Saturday, June 20, 2009

Twitter Infiltrates Business-to-Business Marketing


Twitter Trends Spotted for Business-to-Business. Sysomos issues June 2009 Report on Twitter Users and Habits across the world.

I looked at Twitter in the past as a purely social media gadget used by teenagers and young adults... not a serious marketing and promotional tool for grown-up B2B businesses. I opened a Twitter account in 2008 to research this new web product and measure any potential it had for B2B... slim pickings back then, and I stopped looking at my Twitter account.

But now, Twitter B2B users are starting to Tweet to real business and potential customers. Things are changing for Tweeter and B2B as marketers and others realize the growing Tweeter user population brings great potential value in spreading short, easy to digest messages, often linked to a key webpage. This very young trend should grow into the next decade.

This year I observed hundreds of attendees, for the first time, use Twitter at a large, major industry conference. They were being kept up-to-date on conference news and activities before, during and after the event with real-time 'Tweets'. That was my Eureka moment on Twitter... time to take it seriously and grow with the B2B trend now happening.

Look at some major businesses using Twitter to update customers, employees, potential customers and others: Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, three General Electric B2B divisions, Apple Computer, Google. The WSJ and FT Tweets actually serve as Headline News Feed Services.

And did I mention that Twitter (so far) is free to senders and receivers? For small business owners, this communication tool can be a great way to get your message out... the only cost is your short amount of time needed to send out a Tweet.

The young may an overwhelming majority of Tweeters now, but they will grow older, mature and become tax paying citizens with real jobs making real business decisions... time is on Twitters side.

Marcus Aurelius, one of the 'good' Roman Emperors, said "Observe constantly that all things take place by change." When it comes to web marketing and technologies, this wisdom is timeless.

Here is an excellent and detailed global Twitter-user demographics and habits report prepared by Sysomos Inc researchers Alex Cheng, Mark Evans and Harshdeep Singh, called "An In-Depth Look Inside the Twitter World" . If you are remotely interested in learning more about Twitter, take a look!

You can follow my periodic blogs on Twitter, where I have a small but growing group of 'followers': https://twitter.com/ErikHolladay . I only started to seriously use Twitter in the last few months, it was that one B2B conference (attendance 50,000) which was the catalyst for me to see change was coming!

Twitter is only going to be as good as a company makes it. I attended another massive industry conference recently... they too set-up a twitter account but never used it during the conference... missing an audience of over 70,000 attendees. They even announced that they're focused on 'reaching out to the public' with a Social Media campaign... but someone forgot to "Tweet". Twitter will be a hit and miss learning curve scenario for everyone in B2B.