OK, so we all know that we can find out what the hottest movie start had for breakfast this morning on Twitter. Personally, I find this type of information on the nauseating side. A lot of the stuff that I see on Twitter is an absolute waste of time to me. Also, I think that Twitter has run its course in a lot of ways as a marketing avenue. I mean, sure, it is an option and can be an effective tool, but trust me, it takes a long time to build up a list of followers and the “return on investment”is quite low.
However, recently, through a good bit of personal experience, I have been able to uncover a few much more viable and relevant uses for Twitter. So, the next time you’re ready to tell the whole world that you’re about to go get a pizza and then watch a movie, you might consider these 5 uses for Twitter instead, which are great complements to our social media strategy tips that help you avoid letting social media ruin your career.
1. Customer Support
Whenever I have to call up a big company or corporation for customer support, I cringe. I cringe because, normally, I know that I’ll be losing a big chunk of time out of my day. I simply cannot stand waiting on hold on the telephone. But, did you know that a lot of companies monitor Twitter for complaints and requests for help?
Now, I would not expect instant responses via Twitter, but to me, if I have an issue with my cable, for example, that isn’t pressing, what better way to save time and stress than to send out a Tweet and check back an hour later to see if I’ve received a response? But even for more immediate-type issues, Twitter can now be considered a viable option. You’d be surprised at the number of companies who actively monitor Twitter for this type of thing. For example, Southwest Airlines, Dell Computers, and Comcast all have representatives devoted to monitoring Twitter.
I’ve even heard of people getting set up with new services (cable, internet, TV, etc.) via Twitter.
2. Customer Service
Better yet, if you have a legitimate complaint about a company, one great way to get their attention is to Tweet your complaint. I would be fair and courteous if going this route, but these companies know that if they’re reading your complaint, so are potentially millions of other people. So, not only do they want to solve your issue, but they want all the people that are “watching” or “listening” to also know that they take care of complaints from their customers.
I recently tweeted a bad experience I had with a rep from a big company, and within fifteen minutes, I received a response back. This person apologized for the incident and offered some compensation as an apology.
3. Get Feedback
Another effective use for Twitter (and I guess a backdoor marketing technique) is to use Twitter to get feedback. If you have anything online that you’re needing comments or suggestions about, try sending out a Tweet. It could be a web design page you’ve just put together, a new blog, a new logo, a new video, or anything online. Just Tweet it out and see what people have to say about it.
4. To-Do List
I also have been using Twitter lately as a kind of mobile, on-the-go to do list. I’m not good at writing stuff down and I don’t use voice recorders, so when I think of something that needs to get done or a new idea that I have for something, I usually Tweet it, then mark it as a favorite to be categorized later.
5. Hire People
Although I’ve never tried it myself, Twitter can also be used to hire people. Rather than taking out an expensive advertisement or trying any of the other traditional ways for finding a potential hire, try tweeting your hiring needs. This can be especially effective when looking for freelancers and other online “workers” who are more likely to be actively involved in Twitter.
I was not trying to bash Twitter in the beginning of my article. The only thing that I’m saying is that it seems now that, for as many frivolous use that there are for Twitter, there are also a lot of viable, effective uses it for it too. Twitter should now be considered a viable option for some of the many things we never dreamed we could accomplish by simply sending out a Tweet.
Have you had any customer service success by using Twitter? Do you have any other great ideas for using Twitter effectively? Let us know!
(photo credit: 7son75)