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Since social media has gone mainstream, we’ve heard the social media gurus preaching about the importance of engagement. We’ve talked about how important it is to build relationships on Twitter and we’ve even highlighted what brands should know before trying to sell on social.

Yet still, organizations of all shapes and sizes are struggling with the idea of engaging with consumers. Brands have no issue talking to people who talk to them first but tend to have difficulty in getting over the hump to reach out and engage their audience proactively. It’s a resistance that is stopping organizations from getting closer to their customers.

It doesn’t matter how much time you spend on Twitter if you’re not using it effectively. It doesn’t matter how many followers or tweets you have if you’re not tying it back to results. The most effective way to drive results from Twitter is through one-on-one interaction between a brand and their audience. It’s through these pro-active interactions that gives brands an opportunity to help the consumers across their different buying stages and build a relationship like no advertisement ever can. One of the biggest untapped opportunities for brands can be found in brand relevant engagement opportunities defined as a social lead.

Social leads are actionable opportunities in which a brand should engage. They could be someone tweeting that they’re thinking about buying a product/service that you sell or it could be someone tweeting that they’re having an issue with your product. The fact that these conversations have actionable intent make them highly relevant to a business and present an opportunity for engagement that creates a strong relationship that could ultimately lead to a sale.

So, what I want to focus on today is to teach you how to effectively engage with consumers on Twitter. I know it’s only one part of the social media puzzle, but it’s an important part. It’s a part of the puzzle that many people are still missing and one that can close the gap and clearly demonstrate the value of social media. Check out the slides below to learn how to effectively engage with social leads on Twitter: