Twitter Chat, A Great Vehicle for Inbound Marketing

Twitter Chat, A Great Vehicle for Inbound Marketing

By John McTigueMar 7 /2010

I hate it when people whine about Twitter. Too hard to track, too much useless garbage, too many wackos and spammers. Yeah, yeah, yeah. If you know what you're doing (and spend a little time learning how to use it), Twitter is a fantastic tool for inbound marketing and business in general. One of the best uses is Twitter chat. Here's the formula. Someone starts a discussion labeled by a hashtag (for example #kunochat), then interested people monitor the chat by searching on the hashtag, and they participate by including the hashtag in their tweets. That's all there is to it. But what's the business use of this tool?

I use Twitter chat to engage with other marketing people, learn from them and express my opinions. Often there are potential clients involved in these conversations, so it's possible to generate qualified leads. Here's an example from last week. Valeria Maltoni, a well known brand strategist and blogger, hosts a weekly Twitter chat called "#kaizenblog" every Thursday at 12 ET. It's about Kaizen, "a Japanese philosophy that focuses on continuous improvements in all aspects of life". In most cases it's how people work and do marketing in today's challenging economy. I found out about the chat just by monitoring my lists of interesting fellow marketers via Tweetdeck. I saw some interesting posts with the hashtag "#kaizenblog", so I pulled up a Tweetdeck column with a search for that hashtag, and away I went. Here's a brief snippet of an hour-long Twitter chat.

twitter chat for business 

So what did I gain from this chat, and why will I come back next week?

  1. I met some great folks interested in topics of interest to me. Because they came into the conversation via hashtags,  I can reach out to interesting people I wasn't following previously. I can now follow them and stay in touch more regularly.
  2. I learned useful things about combining radio and TV with inbound marketing campaigns, some great monitoring tools and other marketing topics.
  3. I probably earned some "street cred", i.e., some authority by being there and offering advice to others. I certainly gained a bunch of new Twitter followers in my industry whom I would not have otherwise found.

I'm looking forward to next week's #kaizenblog chat and I'm actively looking for new ones to join. Without Twitter, how would I accomplish this? I might be able to find forums on different websites, but you don't get the real-time feedback. Twitter makes it easy to find and participate in chats. You can engage with many people on any subject under the sun. You can benefit by learning, meeting people and raising your profile.

What are your Twitter chat experiences? Got any good suggestions?

The Author

John McTigue

With over 30 years of business and marketing experience, John loves to blog about ideas and trends that challenge inbound marketers and sales and marketing executives. John has a unique way of blending truth with sarcasm and passion with wit. You can connect with John via LinkedIn and Twitter.