Tuesday, October 07, 2008

50 ideas on using Twitter for organisations

Following from my post this morning on Telstra's use of Twitter, Chris Brogan wrote an excellent piece last month on how organisations can use Twitter to better engage their customers titled, 50 Ideas on Using Twitter for Business.

For me (as it was for Chris) the number one reason or idea for using this type of tool is for listening to your constituency. Hearing what real people are saying about your organisation, services and topic area provides an ongoing temperature of public opinion.

Another key reason in my view is for building an organisation's online reputation.
Most communicators understand that their organisation's public reputation shapes how people engage with them, thereby influencing their capacity to send messages out to their customers as well as their capacity to provide effective customer service.

However in my view few Australian organisations (particularly in the public sector) have as yet grasped how important it is to establish a sound online reputation. Assuming that their past reputation will carry over only goes so far, and it can rapidly be damaged through inept online engagement (or no online engagement at all!)

Laurel Papworth explains this well in her article, Twitter: Reputation Management in Social Networks.

She uses the diagram (illustrated below) to explain the stages in development from creating an online profile (not simply a 'corporate' website!!) to building reputation and trust-based relationships.

Incidentally, the power of Twitter to allow customers to self-organise rapidly is demonstrated in one of the most recent posts in Laurel's blog, Twitter Agency - crowd sourced consultancy.

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