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April 23, 2010

Twitter: A Playground for Email Marketers

A recent post from the official Twitter Blog tells of how much the number of tweets has grown in the past years, minus spam. From 5,000 tweets daily in 2007, to a sudden leap to 300,000 the following year, and a huge 2.5 million messages in 2009. The bottom line today: an average of 600 tweets every second!

While there are no conclusive breakdown of figures to explain that immensity, one is left with a feeling that if the law of statistics and probably do not exclude Twitter, then this social media behemoth is indeed a rich goldmine just waiting to be tapped by savvy e-mail marketers.

With all the world using social media, it’s an easy step for e-mail marketers to integrate their campaigns with Twitter. Despite its 140-character limitation, and the low-key “thin” APIs, the elements are already in place that allows e-mail marketers to wage a successful campaign here.

Wearing Two Marketing Hats in Twitter

Unlike traditional email campaigns, many marketers may still be in the dark of how to go about integrating email campaigns in the Twitterdom. They may scratch their heads because of the alien nature of the social media service when compared with traditional email systems.

After all, the messaging system here is a far cry from traditional email. There are short tweets instead of multi-paragraphed messages. There are text-based posts rather than graphic-rich communications. Subscriptions here are of the form of followers and following. And most importantly, messages here are sent and received in “real-time”.

The last characteristic is an important difference when conducting the marketing campaign, because it urges e-mail marketers to evolve in order to tap into Twitter’s immense customer base. The nature of communication in Twitterdom is more suited for customer relationship-building — it is active and two-way. Users participate through questions and feedbacks, contrary to emails which simply park the message on inboxes and wait for what happens. As such, marketers must learn to “listen” to customers to deliver the campaign suited for their specific preferences.

Integrating Twitter with E-mail

E-mail marketers must go the roundabout way in the Twitterdom to conduct their campaigns. It’s all about luring customers with interesting tweets that link to email sign-ups, and emails that link to Twitter. Here are some ways to do this:

  1. Create useful tweets with links to the full article’s landing page. In the landing page, there can be an option to sign up to get the full version of the information. If the information is valuable enough, Twitter followers can be made instant email subscribers in this manner.
  2. Create Twitter pages for every products or services offered, for fine-grained user segmentation that allows delivery of better-targeted campaigns.
  3. Dedicate an account solely for customer support, and man them with qualified personnel to handle customer questions, requests and feedbacks.
  4. Promote the Twitter account on other marketing channels, for example, as a signature in e-mail campaigns, a footer in newsletters, or a website link, or by quoting customer tweets in other social media accounts.

This unique nature of real-time social media services like Twitter urges e-mail marketers to re-think their ways and perspectives in order to come up with cross-channel marketing campaigns. Failure to do so is a big loss and a denial to tap into a huge customer base all ripe for the picking.

Debbie A. Everson is the CEO of, experienced SEO Consultants and Search Engine Optimization Agency to over 2,000 small businesses. Read my SEO Blog for hints and tips. Follow me on Twitter @searchmar. Call 1.866.885.6263 to speak to one of our SEO Consultants and receive your free consultation.