Local Twitter – Stickier and Less Complicated

03Feb09

First of all Twitter is a weapon. But it looks like a really harmless teddy bear.

In local business. some relationships are not worth the effort, some are. I spent the day working on Eventzi, then had a little ideas about Twitter and local businesses.

Lets just say your local coffee shop had a Twitter account and encouraged you to follow them, maybe even giving away a coffee.

This could keep potential/loyal customers in touch with new ideas or promotions.

Now it might seem like its trivial and i can hear you saying, “do our customers even know about Twitter?”, “whats the point?”, “how different is this really compared to the bucketload of other ways to advertise?”

There is a momentum kicking along with Twitter and the recent celebrity adoption of the service. Businesses who get it are really nailing it and helping their customers to feel great and kick ass.

I think this will become mainstream:

– It’s opt in and easy to unsubscribe should you decide it’s not for you

–  It can be personal but not intrusive.

– Its delivered in formats appropriate to the users – from SMS to Facebook and pretty much everything else in between and around the sides.

– There is very little friction – the benefits for the coffee shop and their customer is way in excess of the effort required to make and accept the offer.

– It’s open to the mainstream on their terms.

How it evolves is facsinating. There are so many different elements that can get in the way of so much open data. For example:

In what context are followers likely to read the offer? When is the optimal time to post a free am coffee special offer? How to measure conversion rates? Will these relationships be exploited somehow.

My favourite evolution is the geolocation. For example can coffee shops target their offers to people who are in the local area or when they enter it.

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