Last week Twitter made headlines when its stock value plummeted 20%. While Twitter doesn’t disclose all of the information in regards to users and financials, the less than expected earnings for the last quarter were enough to spook investors as well as several business owners that engage with us here at Alter Endeavors.
We’re here to tell you. Twitter isn’t going anywhere. They’re just embracing who they are.
My mother is in her late 60s and fascinated by the growth of social media. The easiest way to explain the various platforms to her was to explain the roles of each platform. My explanation went as follows:
- Facebook: Keeping up to with day to day social interactions between friends
- Instagram: A visual-based platform to share with friends what you’re doing
- Twitter: A source for up to the minute news, updates, and support ranging from friends to brands and businesses
- Snapchat: I’ll explain to you when you’re older
All of the recent updates to Twitter, such as a more user-friendly desktop interface, live and on-demand video coverage (such as the 2020 Olympic Games), and even their new policy towards political advertising doesn’t represent “panic mode”- they represent a brand truly understanding who they are.
Twitter is still a valuable social media platform because of the instantaneous availability of information, especially from brands that have some market authority. Scroll through Reddit. Even many Reddit posts are references to tweets. Twitter allows users to quickly gain and digest information. There’s always going to be a need/role for that in the way we consume media in the modern digital age.
So before you consider jumping off of Twitter for your business or your brand, here are three examples of instances where Twitter can provide immense value.
1) Event Marketing
To use an Austin based example, ACL has long utilized Twitter to promote the event both before the festival as well as during the festival. Twitter allows for content to be aggregated on social media in “one place” through the usage of hashtags. If you’re a business and you have an event, Twitter can create an instant sense of community between your attendees. They can discover new content by using hashtags as well as engage in similar content. Event Marketing also relies on instant updates or support (which I’ll get into later) making Twitter an ideal platform. While Facebook or Instagram are still valuable because they allow for brands to demonstrate how users/clients/etc. engage with the brand- Twitter is all about creating an instant sense of community.
2) Brand Authority
One of the biggest hurdles for Twitter is that the majority of their engagement, content creation, and usage is from a very small population. That’s because in regards to establishing Brand Authority- Twitter works.
Sidestepping for a second, I’m not going to get into the frequency of posts (which I think does turn some users off to certain accounts), what I am going to dive into is how the underlying role of Twitter in our social media landscape is that of supplying information- which is vital to Brand Authority and Authority Marketing.
A great example of this would be the recent disputes between Kevin Durant and everyone. Within hours of a simple tweet from Donovan McNabb to KD, the posts went viral and gathered immense media attention. That’s not to say that their “twitter beef” was even relevant, but more so that Twitter provides an avenue for immediate conversation. Your brand (whether your business or person) doesn’t need major press coverage to insert itself into a nationwide conversation, it just needs Twitter. Twitter also allows for high level content to be shared in a way that still engages users and establishes credibility. Founder of Zilker Media, Rusty Shelton, wrote a book called The Twitter Handbook which goes way more into detail on this point and is a read I would highly recommend if you’d like to learn more about Twitter and Authority Marketing.
3) Customer Support
This concept is a little more abstract, but here’s a story from my own life that pretty clearly demonstrates the point:
Two years ago, I was taking a flight on a major airline. The airline was having issues that day with several flights being delayed due to inclement weather in a location halfway across the country for me. I checked Twitter and saw they posted about the delays and to message them if I need my flight rescheduled. I did just that and was on a new flight within half an hour (a live support agent did reach out to me).
We use Twitter even here at Alter Endeavors for support. Several tools our teams utilize have an amazing Twitter presence and keep us constantly updated if there is routine maintenance being performed, so on and so forth.
If you are a brand or business that could benefit from offering immediate support to your clients/customers, Twitter is a great platform to be on.
A question that we ask any business owner before they consider joining or abandoning a particular social media platform is whether the channel allows them to create real value for their audience. Often times, they are unaware of who their audience really is, unsure of how to measure value and lack the time necessary to build a genuine online community. Twitter is a fast-paced platform that we highly recommend for authors, speakers, and thought leaders who have things to say and resources to share, both with frequency and in a digestible manner. As an agency, we help our clients organize these thoughts, fact-check resources and engage with their community so that if they were to disappear from the conversation surrounding their industry, their presence would be sorely missed.
All in all, change isn’t easy. Twitter will experience some bumps along the road. In the end, the recent updates and changes aren’t a company trying to soothe investment concerns but rather a social media platform embracing its identity and positioning itself for future success. Twitter isn’t going anywhere and is still a valuable tool – it just takes a strategy that understands Twitter’s identity like Twitter does.