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Twitter a Must for Small Businesses, Statistics Suggest

13 Jun, 2012 By: Jackie Jones

SAN FRANCISCO – Now more than ever before, small businesses can benefit by having a presence on Twitter, according to recent statistics showcasing the social media site’s significant growth.

In just two years, Twitter has seen a 663-percent growth in people using the site to ask for business recommendations, according to research by Orange Business.

“Today, Twitter represents a compelling word-of-mouth engine that can deliver significant business opportunities to small businesses across a wide variety of sectors,” said Mike Tomlinson, small business marketing director at Orange Business. “The current economic conditions being what they are, it is critical for small businesses to utilize whatever technology they can to win new business. With 10 million people in the U.K. on Twitter, what business can afford to ignore that many potential customers?”

Of particular note to small businesses, the Orange Business research recommended the following for success on the social-networking site: mobilize your Twitter account, be prepared to offer advice, be quick, reach out to communities of other Tweeters and demonstrate real-world credentials. Being able to access Twitter at various places makes it easier for small businesses to respond to requests in a timely manner and showcase any expertise and accessibility. The more networks a small business is engaged in, the fewer degrees of separation there will be between brands and potential business leads, Orange Business added.

“By accessing Twitter whenever and wherever they can, professionals can keep a closer eye on any requests for services and respond before the competition does, keeping them an important step ahead in rough economic times,” Tomlinson said.

Twitter has long been keen to partnership opportunities with small businesses, rolling out a self-serve ad platform back in November 2011 to select brands and then to all small businesses in March (Response This Week, Feb. 22). “Successful small-business owners intuitively know how to build meaningful relationships with their customers. They were the first to use Twitter to talk with consumers in real time, and their creativity demonstrated Twitter’s potential as a marketing platform,” Twitter said on its blog. “Soon, small businesses based in the United States will have the chance to take their Twitter marketing efforts to a new level.”

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