Twitter: Corporate Communications Chameleon [Chart]

Twitter: Podium or Network

Twitter is a communications chameleon when used as a form of social media content marketing to achieve corporate goals. It allows marketers to create content in 140 characters, to distribute their message in a variety of formats including advertising, and to engage in conversation through Twitter exchanges. As with any social media platform, the context in which the content is viewed has an impact on the message. When using social media to enhance corporate communications, understand that information exchanges can occur in three different directions: one-to-many, one-to-one and many-to-many.

Twitter: Podium or Network

For a corporate executive or marketer deciding to use Twitter as a platform to enhance a communications strategy, the question often arises whether Twitter is a podium for product or executive positioning or a network to build relationships with prospects, customers and fans. Here’s a chart to help visualize these options.

©2011 Heidi Cohen – All rights reserved

Twitter can be both a podium for building your firm’s thought leadership and a network for enhancing your customer relationships. One area where these two approaches differ is in your corporation’s approach to those participants you follow. Using Twitter as a one-to-many broadcast and advertising platform, like traditional media, can be a turnoff for many Twitter followers who will unfollow you. (Bear in mind the unspoken rule of one promotional message for every ten messages about other people. Remember: with social media, it’s about your audience.)

Whether you use Twitter as a podium or a network, how you position and brand your organization is important. To this end, understand Twitter’s language and rules of engagement. Further, like any marketing strategy, set goals that are in line with your corporate objectives and related metrics to assess your success.

Are there any other elements that you’d add to this assessment? If so, what are they? Do you think that Twitter is a corporate podium or network? If so, why do you think so?

Happy marketing,
Heidi Cohen

P.S. Here are the related charts in case you missed them:

Here are related articles on Twitter that can give you a better context for understanding the platform.

A tip of my hat to #UsGuys Blog Up. This week’s topic was Twitter: Podium versus Network. To follow the conversation on Twitter use either #UsGuys or #UsBlogs. To see how my #UsGuys colleagues approached the topic, here’s a list of their posts. Please sample them.

Photo credit: Walknboston via Flickr

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