Will Twitter Bring You Sales?

by G.B. Oliver

This was a tweet sent out this week by @gregorygarrick:

The biggest mistake a marketer can make is… Measuring success in terms of leads & NOT revenue

I couldn’t agree more. Leads, followers, likes, they are all pretty much the same thing. Don’t get mislead that having a lot of these means a ton of sales will be coming your way. I spoke about this a bit in a previous post, Traffic is Not Sales but I wanted to cover it again from a different angle.

As I have said many times, not all social media works for all types of products. While they are free mediums to use, they can be time consuming, so only spend time on the ones that are bringing you SALES.

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Does Twitter Bring Sales?

Twitter is an interesting social media platform. It is a great medium for communicating and getting the word out, but does it bring buyers to your website? (and remember, that was never the original intention behind the creation of Twitter or any of the social medias).

Based on my research, and backed up by other research, Twitter is really more effective for business to business selling. So if you are selling jewelry supplies for example, yes, you should be on Twitter because jewelry sellers are there and it is easy to find them (use the #jewelry hash tag) and easy to make them aware of your services simply by following them. Why are jewelry sellers there? One, because they have been told by the marketing world they have to be on there to be relevant, and two, because they are using it to search for new customers as well. I am sure there are other reasons, but, in all honesty, those are the main two.

Now, if you do not sell to businesses but rather to the end user, research has shown that end users for not using it as much for search (but that may change in the future), except on trending hash tags. So if you include a trending hash tag in your tweet, for example #HappyMonday, you can get seen in front of a large amount of people (I covered this in my post, Clever Ways to Use Twitter Hash Tags). But again, sheer exposure is no guarantee of sales, especially if it is not to your target market. I see a lot of wonderful products every day, but if I have no need for them, I’m not going to buy them.

So, are there ways to use Twitter that might lead result in sales?

  • If a Twitter account that has a large number of followers retweets one of your tweets or sends out a link to your website, that does expose you to a large amount of people, and if they are your target market, even better. So there is a definite potential here for sales.
  • If you have a large following of regular customers and you tweet out a special offer or a new product, that could definitely lead to a sale.
  • If you use it to engage in a conversation with someone who is asking a question that pertains to what you sell, that could also lead to a sale (maybe not right away).
  • If your followers love you enough to retweet your tweets, that exposes you to new people, which could lead to sales.
  • You can also pay and do a sponsored tweet that goes out to a targeted audience (probably your best chance for sales).
  • If you tweet something really witty or funny or inspiring, that could go viral as your followers retweet to their followers and then so on. Again, exposed to more people, but not necessarily your target market, could result in sales.

Now remember the steps that must occur in order to lead to a sale: The person on Twitter must even see your tweet, which can be difficult if they are scrolling through an ocean of tweets. Then, they must be interested enough to click on the link in your tweet. If there is no link that takes them to your website, then they must click on your Twitter name. Then they must read your profile to see what you do. Then they must click over to your website from there. Then they must look at your products. Then they must decide if there is anything they want or need. Then they must decide if they want to buy – that’s a lot of steps and you are losing people at each one.

Don’t get me wrong, Twitter can be great for businesses, just not all businesses. So have a presence, because it is free advertising, but keep your expectations in check.

You’ll find hundreds of innovative, but solid marketing ideas, in my ebooks, Small Business Marketing Ideas That Work! as well as other helpful marketing tools in my Etsy shop.

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© 2013 G.B. Oliver. All rights reserved.

Author: Gail Oliver, Online Small Business Consultant

I'm Gail Oliver, an online marketing consultant. Welcome to my blog, chosen one of the Top 10 Small Business Blogs to Follow in 2014 by American Express Open Forum. If you need help with your e-commerce business, be sure to see MY SERVICES, above.

1 thought on “Will Twitter Bring You Sales?”

  1. Some great advice! I have a business twitter but really need to use it to my advantage and follow all the good tips out there.

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