Filling The Top Of The Funnel Through Twitter
Marketing Ideas & Sales & Marketing for Professional Services

Filling The Top Of The Funnel Through Twitter

December 5, 2016

by Tony Vidler  CFP logo   CLU logo  ChFC logo

twitter-prospecting

Loads of social media channels are great for business, but nothing fills the marketing funnel quickly quite like Twitter in my experience.

 

Everyone understands the “fill the funnel” concept of course, and the number one challenge for most professional services firms is getting the necessary volume of potential clients into the engagement process to begin with.

 

Most professionals are very good at the one-to-one engagement that leads to a highly qualified prospect becoming a client.  Increasingly, the majority of professionals are good enough (if not “very good”) at the middle of the funnel part where we are engaging with a pool of prospects who might become clients one day.

 

It is the “getting them into the engagement cycle” which remains the biggest challenge, and where most professional services firms spend the most money and angst.

 

Take a look at Twitter.  It might just be the panacea you are looking for.

 

In its favour is the strong argument that relatively few other professionals have really got to grips with it and are using it well, so there is an excellent opportunity to stand out in comparison.

 

The big reason for using it is the difference in user behaviour.  On Twitter the audience is actively looking for content and thought leaders.

 

That makes it different to most other social media platforms when it comes to business use.  Instead of having to push into people’s domains such as how we connect on LinkedIn or attract an audience on Facebook, Twitter pulls people in.  Users are actively searching for key words, hastags and content around particular topics of interest.  They are choosing to follow them instantaneously and choosing to become part of someone’s audience.  Generally a fair proportion of these “followers” move along the path to becoming brand advocates relatively quickly if your content and style resonate too: they share your stuff and your brand very quickly.

 

fill-the-funnel-with-twitterTo make that happen and to create an ever expanding pool of potential prospects there are a few things to get right of course.  At the very least:

  • Be clear about your positioning and what you want to become known for (or known as an expert in)
  • Stay on point with your content and be relevant for your target market audience
  • Share other people’s useful and relevant content
  • Try not to use all of your 140 characters per tweet. Allow room for others to make a comment or to Retweet it without them going over their character limit whenever you can.
  • Use hashtags for keywords and themes in order to get found by your target market
  • Use a link shortening app or social media dashboard (e.g. Hootsuite or Buffer) so links to great content are kept as short as possible (which helps with your content being shared further afield)
  • Search your own hastags or keywords to see who is asking questions or having debates about your area of expertise.  Help them.  Answer their questions.  People will follow you for it….
  • Remember basic courtesies.  Say “thank you”.  Be nice….no trolling or nasty rejoinders.  That stuff will turn off more than just the individual it was aimed at.
  • Be constant.  There will be an optimal frequency for posting and sharing that keeps an audience engaged, and that frequency will depend on the type of people and the topics you are talking about.  It doesn’t have to be high volume either, even a couple of tweets a day may be sufficient if you are on point for your audience.
  • Use scheduling, but avoid automation.  Using social media dashboards (as per examples earlier) enables you to schedule all your content in one sitting for a week or a month ahead, so the actual work of “being there” doesn’t have to be a daily interruption.
  • Engage with followers personally.  Rather than just being a broadcasting machine sending out content, take a few minutes to respond to people who comment on your articles or who interact with you.

 

In addition to these pointers, the two elements which will determine how well and quickly you build an audience who begin to engage with you are:
  1. Be personable, and,
  2. Be a personality.

 

Being “personable” is about using the common courtesies of course, but it is also about avoiding inflammatory topics or divisive issues.

 

The exception is when the divisive issue is one where you wish to demonstrate your thought leadership.  So if there was a debate about somehting within your industry or your target market’s world, then it may make sense to take a position publicly.  However it is rarely a great way to win friends or influence people if you start banging on about your political views or wage a vendetta against a corporation who has slighted you.

 

Be a personality too in the sense that you drop the professional shield a little.  Have a bit of fun; show people what you laugh at or what you are passionate about (other than that political thing of course).  Show some humanity.

 

Follow these tips and you will probably be amazed at how potential future clients will gravitate to you, and how quickly one can build an audience of engaged prospects.

 

And besides all that….Twitter is a lot of fun.  Have a look at it.

 

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