Twitter: How 140 Carefully Chosen Characters Can Break Your Bank

Twitter — while used by some as an outlet for comedic one-liners, rants about slow service at a mom and pop shop down the street and 140 carefully chosen characters to describe the best cat video they’ve ever seen — is revolutionizing the way products are showcased on the Internet. Hundreds of tweets appear on timelines all over the world, so how does a company work to get the attention it feels it deserves? Very carefully.

Online ShoppingWhether you’re a big box store or a vintage shop selling homemade goods on Etsy, it’s no longer necessary to spend thousands of dollars on a glossy print ad or a catchy jingle. Twitter is proving to be one of the most effective ways to be seen and utilized for quick revenue.

Over the past few months, friendly UPS, USPS, and FedEx drivers have hand-delivered several company-emblazoned cardboard boxes to my front porch. Thanks to tweets from friends, co-workers, household names and even the ocassional celebrity recommended paid ad, the following tweet-endorsed goods were somehow added to my virtual shopping cart and arrived three to five business days later: Health-conscious snacks from Graze, a buttery leather portfolio from Heirloom Leather on Etsy, genetic testing and ancestry results from 23andMe, a shiny new Electric Tea Kettle using Amazon Prime, and a beautifully cut fluorescent neon necklace from Hook and Matter (at least this one was a gift for a friend!).

With one glance at this random list, you may be thinking there’s no direct correlation between the goods; but you’d be fashionably wrong. Every item delivered to my front door was purchased thanks to a link read on Twitter. Whether directly from the company’s Twitter feed or a link suavely inserted into to a friend’s jazzed up jargon, each item was found, researched and ultimately purchased thanks to Twitter. Some of the items were necessary (hello, tea kettle goodness for a frigid Friday night!), but most were definitely not (although I’m sure they could all be justified!).

EbatesTwitter has changed the way marketing teams promote new products, drum up new business and spread the word about what they believe needs to be seen by users looking for a particular item and/or those simply willing to try something recommend by a stranger-friend. Plus, when you add in the extra benefit of using a service like Ebates, a company that offers cash back for items you purchase online, there’s no longer a reason not to give in to a friend’s tempting tweet about a must-have neon pink vest from J.Crew and/or a limited edition specialty drink from Starbucks.

Recommended for YouWebcast: The Art of Community Development: Turning Brand Awareness Into Sales

So, while there are many non-Twitter users who have yet to find the value in tweeting their feelings, following celebrities and scrolling through their never-ending feeds, I’m more than happy to make up for their shortcomings in the name of supporting businesses both big and small…for the love of marketing, of course!

Interested in marketing through Twitter? Download our Increasing Conversions with Social Media guide.

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