My universe has been all a-Twitter lately. Literally.
My company is finally putting up a website, something that's been talked about for several years but never completed. This summer, we hired a professional web design company and they've put together a site for us that will "go live" by mid-September.
I haven't been involved in the process until very recently, when I was asked to give my opinion on the prototype. I noticed the designer had built in space for a live Twitter feed, and included a cute little "Follow Us" button on the toolbar. My initial reaction was negative. What in the world would be Tweet about? Ordered Panera for lunch three days running? Just got a new supply of bond paper from Costco? Copy machine's down again - repair needed Stat! Those were about the most exciting things that happen around our little office. The really good stuff happens to our clients, but their adventures are completely protected by HIPAA laws (mores the pity).
But after conversing with some Social Media Experts at that infamous fund raising event a few weeks ago, I was persuaded to think differently. Apparently Twitter has become quite the efficient (and free!) marketing tool, giving you the ability to publicize (for free!) your business' activities and keep in contact (for free!) with other people in your field. It's sort of like a big cocktail party in cyber space, with all sorts of name dropping and reciprocal Tweeting and Re-Tweeting going on.
Like Mad Men, 21st century style (minus the cocktails, cigarettes, and rampant sex, which makes it the perfect kind of marketing activity for little old me).
I've been practicing with my own Twitter account (@RavenousReader if you'd like to follow along) which has been lying nearly dormant for quite some time. I'm beginning to see how Twitter can be quite effective for people in the arts and entertainment fields, or for those with services and products to offer. Could there be any benefit for us, a private medical case management company?
Amazingly, quite a few of the medical service providers we work with have Twitter accounts. Simply by "following" them, our company name gets a pinprick on their radar. Also, updating Twitter regularly somehow gives our website a bit more "street cred" in the SEO (that's search engine optimization) department. Plus, having that cute little Twitter symbol on the website makes us appear more friendly to those individual consumers who might find us in their search for geriatric care, which is a new service we're promoting.
The powers that be at my office are eager to try this (Free!) marketing tool, hoping it will give us an extra (Free!) marketing boost, and be an easy (and Free!) way to direct some extra traffic to our web site. Who am I to argue? At any rate, it seems like a nice break from the mundane medical records and paper shuffling I'm used to doing.
So if you're looking for me, I'm likely Twittering away. Fly by and give me a tweet.