When I saw a couple days ago that the new version (albeit, still in beta) of Tweetdeck came out the other day, I madly rushed to download and install it. And for the past day and a half, my team and I have been sharing this new version with current and prospective clients as a way for them to better organize, monitor and incorporate the use of both Twitter and Facebook into their overall marketing and sales strategies. And finally, clients are staring to get it. There really is a way to use social media to do more than just catch up with your old high school friends.
The challenge for businesses in our conservative regional market is seeing how such tools as Facebook and Twitter (and the like) can drive sales and awareness for their businesses. After a targeted discussion of social media, they typically come back with one of three comments: 1) “How do you measure it?,” 2) “How much time is this going to take me?,” or “How will this stuff make me money?” All are fair questions. But it has been difficult to answer them beyond, “Well, social media is still evolving, so it’s difficult to answer those questions. But other companies are finding ways to make it work.” And then we would share some of those success stories. The progressive-minded businesses see the light, and begin walking toward it. The others go back to cold calling.
But now that we’re able to bring up Tweetdeck on our screens and show them how it enables users to segment out their Twitter feeds and replies and to monitor and track their Facebook conversations, they begin to see the potential. It’s too soon to tell whether the value is truly clicking for them, or if it’s simply the fact that Tweetdeck appeals to the more linear, left-brained manner of thinking that tends to drive business decision making. The important point in my mind is that tools like Tweetdeck, HootSuite and others are helping to bridge the divide between social media and business,…or, perhaps more directly, the divide between social media and sales/marketing. Because, finally, metrics have a place in social media. And that speaks volumes to businesses trying to create demand in a recession.
This is one more baby step in the right direction for marketing and selling in the new economy. Personally, I can’t wait for the next evolution.