*This is an old article back from my young marketer days. The lessons contained within may still be useful, but the statistics and facts are aged*
The real time feel
“Real-time”. It is a phrase that many social media companies are trying to work into their interfaces. Facebook recently introduced a “live” version where people can live-stream videos. Social media companies are constantly updated algorithms to show what you want to see, but they still do not come close to the real-time feel like Twitter does.
Well, Justin, what about Instagram?
Instagram is definitely real-time! (Not Anymore As of 28March16) But it is also clunky. Whenever you exit the app or quickly answer a text message in automatically reloads your feed! Sometimes I get three images down, someone sends me a message, and when I reopen Instagram I have to shoot past the same three images to get where I left off.
You’re being nit-picky.
Correct. But I still believe no-one has mastered the “real-time” feel of Twitter. This also happens to be a BLESSING AND A CURSE. Twitter is blessed in that, it has something to hold onto its market share. People and companies that use Twitter are cursed with a huge learning curve.
If your not using lists your working too hard!
This learning curve involves lists; how to organize them, who to put in them, and most importantly why. I will go into details later but let us look at the big picture here. You simply cannot see everything on Twitter. Every second 6,000 tweets are sent out! (My source for this statistic also counts them in real time! Check it out here) So in an effort to break this huge feed down into smaller chunks we create lists. Lists give you a news feed with only “listed” people in them. So instead of seeing everyone, now you will only see tweets from members of the list you are looking at.
Now for the Nitty Gritty…
You should evaluate your business goals to determine what lists to create. ( No I cannot tell you here, every business is different – hire a marketing company like everyone else) As a general rule of thumb, you create lists of content creators and potential customers. These content creators can be segmented (put into their own list) based on what vertical or industry they are in. If you are a fitness company you don’t want to tweet instructions on how to do a push-up all day right? Sometimes we should do sit-ups as well. (Seriously, I need to, you probably need too. Tweet me at @jlincoln1174 and we can do them together). Next, you should split your potential customers up as well. The main reason you have potential customer lists is to LISTEN TO THEM. Yup, you heard right. Listen to them. Understand them. This provides a great tool for learning about your target demographic. There are other ways but, this is my preferred. Maybe another time we will go into “How to learn about your customer base”. In the meantime, if you get charged for stalking please do not reference this article.
So to sum it all up! You;
1 Evaluate your business goals/objectives
2 Evaluate what you want to get out of using Twitter
3 Create segmented lists of your potential customers, based on interests, regions, age, income etc.
4 Listen to your customers! Learn what they like
5 Create another set of lists with content creators. People that create content that your customers like.
What you do from there depends on many variables. Your goals, conversion actions, branding reach, whether or not you have an advertising budget, how big that budget is, etc. all determine your next actions. But, if you followed along, your Twitter lists are effectively leveraged and now waiting for you to push the boulder down the hill.
*This article represents one way to leverage Lists on Twitter. If you would like others or more detailed information follow me on Twitter @jlincoln1174*