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5 Ways to Find Customers on Twitter

Hootsuite rocks.

Most businesses think of Twitter as a promotional vehicle, a way to gain readers for a blog or increase site traffic, or perhaps announce new events or products. But it can be a useful sales-generating tool as well.

Let’s review some facts and figures as a why-should-you-care refresher:

  • Twitter now has 105,779,710 registered users.
  • 180 million unique visitors come to the site every month.
  • New users are signing up at the rate of 300,000 per day.

Now you might be thinking: Super (sarcastic tone), so a lot of people are on Twitter. I knew that. And my small business is supposed to find my customers in the haystack HOW?

  1. Well, the size of your company doesn’t have much to do with it. If you know  your Twitter objectives (aka boost sales) and target audience – Twitter can be effective regardless of the number of people on your payroll.
  2. Repeat after me: Blindly tweeting won’t get your business much mileage. Do: Avoid promotional tweets not tailored for your target audience. Don’t: Be robotic. Personal messages (ex: your CEO contributes every so often) will make  your Twitter feed a personal face and credibility.
  3. Find the influencers in your industry. Then follow them, figure out what makes them successful, and contribute tidbits to the conversation.
  4. Use Hootsuite to monitor keywords, schedule messages, measure results and manage other accounts (like Facebook and LinkedIn) simultaneously.  Interested in HootSuite?  Sign up here.
  5. A relevant Twitter domain is a great (and easy) way to establish credibility with potential customers. If I tweet “Looking for affordable local antiques any recs?” I’m much more likely to respond to FabNashAntiques than storeTN37215.

Curious how other companies are using Twitter? Check out Mashable’s rundown of the 40 best Twitter brands in 2009 (a bit dated, but still interesting).

Thank you Facebook. Talk to you later X!

Nashville, Facebook is doing its very best not to make you terribly sad. We’ve all been there before and FINALLY, due to the constant pestering of some of us (mainly a young lady named Elizabeth Wright of Knoxville, TN of all places) in the Photo Memories group, the pain has ended!  You see, Facebook used to constantly show you photos of your ex, which might have reminded us of just how great things were before he or she dumped you, but it has stopped that now. Exes no longer show up in the “Photo Memories” box.

Photo Memories appear in the top right corner of some Facebook pages, including the Friends and Photos sections. They show your friends tagged in photos long-forgotten, but the friends shown are picked using Facebook’s algorithm for figuring out whose updates you’re most interested in which is all a pretty dorky way of saying Facebook stalks you and remembers all the pages you view!

The exact nature of the algorithm is unclear, but check it out and you’ll notice one pattern: It tends to show romantic interests a lot. Is it because you’ve clicked through their photos before? Because you exchange wall messages? Who knows, but it happens — and that’s all well and good until you break up. Once it’s over, though, it can be painful to see all those pictures, tear.

Users created a group to protest Photo Memories for that very reason. It caught the attention of not only the media, but of Facebook Photos Project Manager Sam Odio. Yesterday he commented on a post about the issue over at All Facebook, saying, “I’d like to let you know that we’re listening to your feedback. The photo memories product no longer shows tagged photos of your friends if you were previously in a relationship with them.”

It’s a welcome change, but it doesn’t completely solve the problem. What if you never declared a relationship on Facebook? Or what if it’s showing you your current squeeze (and it will — only about 1 in 10 photos the box shows me now are of anyone other than my girlfriend) with one of his or her exes? That’s no fun either.

We’d love to see a way to tweak exactly who can or can’t be seen in this box, but we’ll admit most people wouldn’t use it. Most people just don’t manage their Facebook data that carefully.

We would like to thank Mashable for alerting of of this trend and providing the research.

What I will now be doing on a Friday night

Facebook Places ImageI’m all about some social media geolocation tagging. I think Foursquare is good, just not relevant to me or my city. CarlSays is a great idea too if it ever catches on. But, Facebook places should be disabled. When, now! Here’s a short list of reasons why.

1. Others can check you in. In my case, I could be home alone on a Friday night watching Friday Night Lights with my roommate (this is a joke) and my buddy Bill Bivy could be at a dance club and check me in. Now, that might be cool for some, but not if you are an extremely talented dancer like I am who has a very jealous girlfriend. Not cool.

2. Others don’t even have to be at the location to check you in. Oh, now I have a better suggestion for something to do on a Friday night, stay home and check your friends in at sketchy places or the honky tonks of downtown Nashville.

Brilliant Facebook. Thanks for the entertainment.  My Friday nights are now booked for the next two months.

If you do want to disable your Facebook places and ensure that my Friday nights are a little less entertaining , just follow these directions from our friends at LifeHacker.

What does “I like you” mean anyway

Facebook like button imageI’ve heard it, you’ve heard it, we’ve all heard it, but what does “I like you mean?”  In the “real world” as those people who live outside the online world call it, if you “like” someone it means that you want to spend more time with them.  Of course the “spending more time” with someone is where things get a little cloudier and I’ll leave this up to you to define.

In the online world, “liking” has taken off.  On my personal page the other day, I was told that eight of my friends “liked” Lady GaGa.   Of course, I then decided I needed new friends.  But, what about the other “likes” on Facebook that are tied to businesses around the world?  Some statistics have the count of fan pages  around 500,000.  But, how does one page stand out over another?  We say it’s simple.

Our Philosophy:
Go back to the idea of “liking.” Why or how do you like one person more than an another?  Why did you choose your current husband or wife?  For the relationship right?  It’s the same thing online.  Just like in dating or courting or whatever type of online dating service you may be using this week, there is always something that attracks you to someone, or in the business case “liking something.”  And, just like in dating, if you want to take this relationship offline and discuss our ideas further, contact us and we’ll setup a conversation.

Corporations are Catching On

Image of Guy Walks Across America

Do you see the brand yet? Wait for it!

Kudos yesterday went out to Old Spice and today I’m giving the nunchucks to Levis.  Have you seen “their” new YouTube video “Guy Walks Across America?”  I think it’s been up almost 3 days and has almost 1.5 million hits.  Guy Walks Across America, was created with 2770 still frames and produced in only 14 days. That’s one fast walker!  Also, major shift here, there is no mention of an advertiser in the video, unless you look carefully!  I can’t claim to have noticed the Levis brand, since of the placement of the logo is not somewhere I look, but one of my female coworkers sure did!  “Brilliant!” I shouted.  This is good stuff.

Lastly, check out the google map of his “journey”.

What are your thoughts?  Do you think I’m full of it, or do you think YouTube is a great place to market your brand if you are able to do it in a creative, entertaining way?