No matter how much we want to think otherwise, some companies should not be on Twitter and we’ve seen more than our share of people that burn out because they are just working against a system that doesn’t support social media for marketing. A lot of times these issues have nothing to do with social media per se but has to do with the overall company culture
Well, taking a cue from Letterman here is our take at considering whether you should be paddling at all…
Reason 5: Your CEO asks once a month what Twitter is.
If your executive team doesn’t understand Twitter then they will never understand expending resources to use it.
If you think it’s valuable and it is helping build your brand, business or customer base, then prove it. Do the math and build a compelling argument for Twitter. If you can’t demonstrate its effectiveness, then maybe you should be asking yourself why you’re on it.
Reason 4: You don’t remember why you’re on Twitter in the first place.
This isn’t meant to be funny. A lot of companies are on Twitter because they just are. If someone in management said, “We should be on Twitter!” and you just started tweeting doesn’t mean you should be doing it now.
Why are you on Twitter? Why do you care how many people follow you? What do you plan to gain from building a presence there? These are questions you should ask — and be able to answer — at least once a quarter.
And, once you know why you care how many followers you have, then measure and report their data relentlessly.
Not knowing why you are on Twitter or what you want from your efforts is like working without North on your compass.
Reason 3: You have no time/intention to actually be social.
You just want to spout out your 140 characters throw in a hashtag or two and get back to work. You don’t really see how conversations begin and/or evolve on Twitter. To you, it’s just a group of people all standing around in a room shouting at each other.
But if you care, take the time to listen. Find some people that you would like to follow and listen to them. If one of them says something that sparks a reaction from you…tell them. Listen for their reply then begin a conversation. Just like in the real world, conversations in the virtual world may be short or long, but they involve two parties who have something to say to each other.
Live conversations take listening, speaking and timing skills; Twitter is no different.
Reason 2: You have nothing to say that isn’t about you and what you want.
If all you have to Tweet about is why people should buy your product then shut up!
- “We’re open drop by for a visit,” means come spend money with us.
- “Hey, it’s hot outside today; time for a (fill in the blank),” means come spend money with us.
- “Did you know that 68% of everyone needs (fill in the blank)?” means come spend money with us.
- “Our product was voted number 1,” means come spend money with us.
We refer to these Tweets as sales grenades. No one wants to hear them, especially via social media.
You might get lucky though and gain some followers, but, after about three sales grenades they’ll un-follow you in a heartbeat.
…and the #1 Reason Companies Should not be on Twitter is:
Your legal team has to review every communication before it can be sent.
You can be frustrated. You can get mad. But if this is your reality, it’s a deal killer in the world of real-time communication. Chances are that policy was not set with you and Twitter in mind, nor is it going to change for those reasons.
In companies where this is the case, all of the messages have to be scrubbed, sanitized and reviewed ad nauseam. The results are sterile Tweets that have no appeal and no impact in a world where conversations take place in real-time and communication has to be genuine to matter.
Look for other opportunities don’t waste your time
Seriously, if your corporate culture keeps you from using Twitter effectively, then don’t. It’s really that simple; some companies should not be on Twitter.
Channel your time and effort into other content marketing strategy that fits with the corporate culture and will stand a chance of meeting with some success.
More to follow in the weeks ahead…
photo credit: Gary Knight
modified by Shout Out Studio