With this week's announcement of Twitter's declining growth and press speculation around its potential demise, I feel like I'm losing my best social media friend.
Twitter is my favorite platform and the thought of it losing steam as a valuable social media tool makes me very unhappy.
The below infographic outlines the major issues pretty well.
Used with permission from Instavest.)
For many, social media is like a virtual friend, a place to find empathy, support and help when we need it the most.
Even though Facebook is the world's favorite social media platform for personal reasons, Twitter has always been my go-to platform when it comes to business - it's my favorite social media platform for a variety of reasons. I've invested years building Twitter presence that helps me curate content and grow reach of my own blog posts, and have maintained a Twitter chat for over two years now called #PRprochat. I love it.
Watching Twitter seemingly self-destruct is hard on my heart, and some root problems behind its decline point right back to its lack of innovation and PR.
THEIR OWN PLATFORM is one of the strongest content curation and breaking news platforms in social media, and they aren't taking advantage of it.
Instead, they are passively allowing it to die.
Why not try these 4 digital PR tactics to revitalize Twitter?
Digital PR tactics could do amazing things for Twitter growth and awareness.
What would happen if they created targeted, promotional and educational social media campaigns using their own platform, integrated into an overall PR larger strategy? It could COMPLETELY turn around their decline. Here are some of the first tactics I would launch, if I were their Chief Marketing Officer.
A. Create a weekly Twitter chat targeting social media community managers and content marketers. Building an audience of professionals most likely to use and benefit from Twitter would create a rich resource for engagement and education.
I'm immersed in the marketing community online and find it ironic that Twitter doesn't market to marketers. It's their perfect target audience, and marketing on their own platform would be free. Why aren't they doing it?
Twitter is incredibly valuable for journalists and marketing professionals, and its popularity should be blooming right alongside the growth of content marketing. It's the perfect place to grow an audience receptive to content, boosting reach of content for those creating it. It's also a natural fit for breaking news and popular for journalists sourcing their stories. Why doesn't Twitter focus on building an audience with these two groups? It's baffling.
Twitter is very difficult for many people. They don't understand how to use Twitter, measure its success and grow audience, and a Twitter chat is the perfect platform to educate people around these topics.
One of the biggest barriers to Twitter adoption is a general lack of understanding how to use it. Why aren't they helping educate the very community most likely to use the platform? Launching a high-quality Twitter chat ABOUT Twitter would boost use and encourage all of those lovely content marketers to start talking.
It's a giant brand advocacy program waiting to happen.
B. Leverage their own sponsored posts to educate people how to build Twitter streams of value to them. Why doesn't Twitter use sponsored posts to educate targeted audiences? It wouldn't cost them a dime on their own platform.
Twitter blogs, and I didn't even know it! Did you know it?
I consider myself a Twitter power user, and have never seen a single tweet or sponsored post showcasing Twitter's own content. Who else has no idea it exists? We would IF THEY PROMOTED IT, and if it had subscribe conversion mechanisms in place beyond just the Twitter handle.
If one of the biggest growth barriers is that most people don't know how to build an audience that interests them on Twitter, and they don't know what to tweet, why aren't they developing content supported by sponsored posts to TEACH them?
Inexperienced Twitter users still follow back everyone who follows them, resulting in a massive stream of garbage. Who has time to troll through thousands of tweets to find a few useful ones? Nobody.
Many of those who try Twitter quickly leave, once their stream loses value. Why aren't they teaching people how to build their Twitter audience and stream so it's useful?
C. Aggressively use content marketing to promote and educate. Twitter needs to start talking from a PR podium about how tweets boost the reach of content, how social signals amplify popularity, how Twitter is used in creating influence (and influencer scoring), and a host of other topics critical to content marketers and PR professionals.
Why in the hell are they so silent?
They allow journalists to do ALL of the talking for them, without taking control of their own brand journalism and PR. What's with that, Tweeple?? Get with the program, and do a better job of using marketing to build a stronger Twitter. Before it's too late.
They need a marketing team who generates a flurry of guest blog posts, articles and news in major media and trade media. If it's not happening, they need to invest in making it happen.
D. Join social media conversations and communities. This last thought is a no-brainer. Twitter is a social media platform. WHY are they not participating in social media conversations?
That same team that is creating content, launching Twitter chats and generating targeted Twitter sponsored posts should be joining social media conversations ALL OVER the marketing industry, too, so their participation is felt.
If Twitter is already doing these things, then they need to do them on a much larger scale. They are one of the largest social media platforms and should have a correspondingly loud voice in the social media community.
These are just a few basic, low-hanging fruit tactics. What would you do?