Social networks are marvels of the Internet age because they serve as a powerful medium not only for people looking to network and communicate but also for brands. Facebook and Twitter have given brands, both online and offline, the ability to reach their target market and potential customers. Twitter, in particular, is a spectacular medium to build your brand’s online presence and increase brand visibility. And the Twitter Lists feature is a brilliant way to do the same.
A Twitter list is essentially a curated group of Twitter users. Anyone with a Twitter account can curate their own list, add people to lists, or subscribe to lists that interest them. For individuals this is a great way to follow people or topics of interest, but when it comes to brands there is a lot more that brands can do with Twitter lists than simply being part of some interesting ones.
While the concept of Twitter lists is no more alien to brands most of them still fail to utilize this feature to its full effect. Twitter lists can either be Private or Public. Let’s delve into how brands can utilize each of these types to increase visibility and engage the right people.
As the name suggests private lists are visible only to you. Private lists can be used to monitor your competitors and carry out market research specific to a particular competitor. Essentially private lists can be used as a social listening utility. These lists are a great way to gather intelligence and may give you a competitive edge if you listen and understand the competition closely.
These lists can act as a brand’s secret weapon of choice on Twitter to narrow down your competition’s plans by effective social listening and then go on to better those strategies.
Another effective use of a private list on Twitter is tracking an important hashtag relevant to your business. It could be a hashtag that your competitor uses for one of its campaigns and if their campaign creates a world of engagement and ends up being successful by tracking that campaign’s official hashtags you may acquire enough intelligence to run a similar campaign of your own in future and execute it better than you may have without that campaign-intelligence at your disposal.
A lot of folks tend to complain about the phenomenon of social noise on twitter. As a brand you would not want to be caught in this noise and this is where Twitter Lists prove extremely useful. Using a public list brands and individuals can filter out the noise and focus on what is most relevant to them. Brands can use public lists to establish synergies with other brands by adding them to relevant public lists and interacting with them on a regular basis.
Brands can also use public lists to understand what their customer are saying about them on Twitter. In this day and age Twitter has become an extremely powerful medium for customer feedback. The modern consumer does not hesitate in giving honest feedback to a brand based on his or her experience with that brand’s product or service. Before the advent of social media, especially Twitter, there was no instant public feedback mechanism for consumers. Today if a brand does not respond to consumer grievances in a given amount of time consumers may resort to what is known as public shaming of a brand online.
If you listen to your customers and understand what they are saying about your product or service there is a good chance you will be able to fix or better still avert issues before they become issues.
An important thing to consider while creating public lists is the name of the list itself. A public list on Twitter is indexed by default on search engines and if you choose your list’s name strategically you stand to win some SEO benefits.
Another benefit of naming your Twitter lists appropriately is that when you add social influencers to a list and they get a notification about their inclusion in the list they see the name of the list and a name that catches attention by way of its relevance or appeal is likely to be make them want to visit that list.
Once they visit your list and find it relevant or interesting and decide to subscribe to it you have hit an intangible social jackpot. This gives your brand the opportunity to then engage with these influencers and helps you take leverage upon their reach to increase your own reach and engagement.
An online endeavor in establishing an effective brand visibility is all about reaching the maximum number of people and getting those people to positively talk about your brand. And that is nowhere near an easy task, but effectively using Twitter lists is a great step forward in that direction.