Twitter for Business: Pointers from a Social Media Professional


On Wednesday Morning, 451 Marketing’s Chief Social Media Strategist, Joselin Mane, lead a workshop at the Westin Copley Place.  The subject: Twitter 101 for Business.  In case you missed it, here are a few pointers that attendees took away from Joselin’s presentation.

Why is Twitter important for businesses?

There are a lot of ways that brands can benefit from a presence on Twitter, but Joselin mentions that Twitter serves to “expedite the relationship-building process.”  It’s a chance for customers to have conversations and learn from the company – and vice versa.

What should companies (or brands or personalities) include in their Twitter page bio?

“Keywords.  The same keywords that you would use to optimize your website and content for search can optimize your brand for search on Twitter.”  Also, make sure to include a link to your company’s website.  Sounds obvious, but it’s a little thing that can extend the user’s experience and get more traffic on your site.

How can you get specific people or companies to follow your brand?

“Acknowledge content or brands.”  It has been proven that people who only talk about themselves on have less followers.  On the flipside, if you talk about others or share their work (while crediting them) on Twitter, it can have a positive effect.  “It’s a game of reciprocity – I scratch you’re back, hopefully you scratch mine.”

How can a company ensure that people identify with their brand on Twitter?

Identify the individuals within the company who are sending out tweets.  “An individual within a brand can have much more influence” than the company on its own.  If people see the face of the people they are communicating with, they are more likely to make a connection with that brand.

AJ Gerritson, 451 Founding Partner, also offered a helpful tip:

You can actually use the Favorites feature on Twitter to showcase client feedback.  “By favoriting positive mentions of your company or brand, you essentially have your favorites serve as a testimonials page.”


Do you have any more pointers for businesses using Twitter or social media in general?  Let us know in the comments section below, we love to hear from you!


What would Facebook’s location-based feature mean for Fan Pages?

In keeping with the social networking theme of 2010, Facebook hinted the site soon will allow people to post locations in addition to status messages. In a blog post on Friday, Facebook’s deputy general counsel, provided only a couple details about how the places feature would work, but did confirm that the social networking site is developing features that use people’s locations.

If the location feature integrates Facebook Fan Pages it could have very interesting results for businesses on the social networking site. The feature could make Fan Pages for businesses (i.e. restaurants, salons, bars, etc.) more valuable in terms of generating awareness, driving more engagement and appearing more frequently in Google’s Place Pages or Yelp’s listings.

Tagging an update or post with a venue that has a Fan Page, may also allow a user to attach comments/reviews and photos to the venue’s Fan Page. Location-based posts will drive more traffic to Fan Pages and create more engagement between businesses and clients. If the feature is designed to include Fan Pages, I think we’ll see a huge increase in the amount of Fan Pages on the site.

It’s rumored that Facebook will make the official announcement regarding the location feature at the annual f8 conference on April 21st.

How do you think Facebook plans to integrate locations into status updates? How is Facebook going to make its location-based feature different? Tell us what you think Facebook should do!

Using Ustream for Business

Tomorrow morning I’m going to film our “Building a PR Campaign for the Digital World Workshop,” and I plan to post the video on Ustream when I get back to the office.  I know people generally use Ustream to live stream discussions, events, meetings, and etc., and, eventually, I plan to do that as well. I haven’t used the service yet, but I’m excited to learn!

In the mean time, I’m wondering what you think about using Ustream for business purposes. How are you using Ustream for your business? In any unique ways? What are some of the advantages and disadvantages of the service? Do you prefer a different service? I’d appreciate your feedback!



Crap. We’re Screwed.

Recently I’ve seen bloggers/writers focus on both “grown up” social media that is based on sound strategy and companies that are better staffed for tackling different social media initiatives. (See Mack Collier’s recent post “Is social media growing up”)

Over the last 6-12 months, many organizations added a social media strategist or social media director to existing marketing departments. They actively executed social media activities with customers, fans and prospects. They tied actions directly to real business objectives, and many of their campaigns were very fruitful.


As many companies are now involved in social media, and with the economy showing signs of improvement, what happens when these social media directors decide they would like to explore other opportunities at other organizations? What happens when the organization’s activities are focused mainly around one individual who decides to leave? If the company does not have internal personnel (besides the person leaving) experienced in planning or executing specialized activities, is the company not putting itself at great risk?

I think as companies become more involved with social media they need to think about putting contingency plans in to place surrounding the loss of key personnel. At the very least they should have multiple people working on initiatives (internal and external) and they should answer clearly all “what ifs.”

I would be really interested to hear how you might have addressed or how you plan to address this topic at your companies. What planning have you already done?

-AJ Gerritson @ajgerritson

It’s now a bird-eat-bird world

I am hopeful that 2010 is going to bring much prosperity to all of us in business. This past year has been one in which many of us (including myself) have learned a great deal. Personally, I have seen competitors rise and fall, our own agency evolve, and many great advances in social media marketing, public relations, and mobile marketing.

With the launch of our new website, and the current marketing initiatives we have in place, I know Q1 is going to be a busy one. One of the lessons learned from 2009 is that creating partnerships between non-direct competitors can be very fruitful. We are entering the time of “co-ompetition,” where agencies are joining forces to strengthen combined service offerings to win larger accounts.

Now, I am not saying that competition between firms isn’t still fierce. However, maybe now it’s more of a “bird-eat-bird” world instead of a dog-eat-dog one.


(In case you are wondering, yes, this is a picture that I took of a bird eating another bird with my iPhone. Yes, it is gross, but I can imagine a picture of a dog eating another dog to be 1000 times more disgusting).

What do you guys think? What are your plans for 2010?

-AJ Gerritson @ajgerritson