With something in excess of 300 million active users every month, Twitter is a social media platform that businesses should not ignore. Indeed, Twitter themselves describe their business mission in the following words:
“Make Twitter the best place to talk with and about business.”
With that background, it is easy to see why Twitter are continuing to focus on new ways that help businesses engage with their customers. The latest updates, referred to as Twitter Dashboard, really do focus on helping businesses get involved in the conversations that may previously have taken place without their knowledge!
Twitter as a Customer Support Tool
Twitter is increasingly see by many consumers as a mechanism to engage with customer support teams or business owners. We have come to expect well-run businesses to be responsive via Twitter. With that expectation in mind, Twitter are now helping businesses manage those conversations more effectively. You can now:
- Accept direct messages from any Twitter user if you wish, not just those who you follow and who choose also to follow you.
- Set up an introductory message for those who choose to send you a message – perhaps guiding them what to expect if they message you, or providing them with alternate ways to contact your business if their purpose warrants it. You could give people your customer service number and hours, or publish a link to a specific page on your website.
- Highlight the times you are most responsive to messages on your profile page, so people know when best to contact you.
There are some great examples from Twitter where businesses have really integrated this with their customer service processes. Their developer solutions offer even greater levels of flexibility, but as a small business you can set up simple automated messages. Just go to https://dashboard.twitter.com/i/settings/support to set up your profile.
Finding the conversations About You
One of the biggest challenge as a business is knowing what is being said about you, rather than to you. Twitter now makes that easier too, with a new facility to create a content ‘feed’ of tweets about specific subjects or from specific users. Businesses that are able to identify conversations about them and engage in those conversations will generate much higher levels of engagement with their customers or prospective customers.
Think about a scenario where someone tweets asking for advice on a particular product. If that is a product your business sells, how impressive would it be if that person received a tweet from you directing them to the product specification page on your website? Or perhaps even to an email sign-up process that offered them a small discount on their first purchase?
The key is understanding what type of conversations might be taking place about you, specifically (ie brand) or generically (ie type of product or service). Twitter Dashboard helps facilitate that. All you need to do is find the right way to be part of the conversation then!