Twitter + Google Plus = 50% of my new business – wow!

Business networking Twitter success – Where did that come from?

One minute social media marketing is pie in the sky. The next it’s a business essential.

If you blinked you probably missed the transition. But social has grown up and there’s no looking back. The tipping point has been reached and billions of businesses have joined the bandwagon… because when you get it right, it works.

I’ve never been a marketer who leaps gaily aboard bandwagons. I prefer to bide my time, letting other people do the cutting edge discovery bit before I suck it and see, bringing a strong direct marketing slant into play. Eighteen months ago I was ambivalent about social’s business value. But I don’t mind admitting it: the minute I started generating new customers via Twitter, I changed my tune.

Generating 50% new business through Twitter

These days 50% of my new clients discover me through Twitter, the other 50% via natural search / word of mouth. I love Twitter because it’s so simple, easy to drive and joins the marketing dots so beautifully. And I’m falling in love with G+ for the same reasons.

Adding Google + to the list

While the Google + network took off relatively slowly, their ground-up involvement in search means they’re in the perfect position to use social signals effectively to help figure out which sites deserve a page one position. Because it’s an excellent vehicle for sharing quality content – the holy grail of online marketing – it also seems sensible to join G+ from an SEO perspective. So I’m slowly getting to grips with it, exploring whenever I have spare time.

Leaving Facebook and LinkedIn behind

I don’t have the time or energy to interact with more than two networks. I only maintain a presence on LinkedIn because everyone else is on there – the interface is such a pain in the bum. And I detest Facebook as a marketing medium, reserving it exclusively for friends and family.

NO marketing… but plenty of networking

Using  Twitter for a year and dabbling in Google Plus over the past three months, I’ve profoundly changed the way I generate business. But oddly enough I don’t think my social media success has anything to do with marketing. I do networking.

Making the most of Twitter and building up G+

Here’s what I’ve done to leverage Twitter and G+ for business:

  • I post to Twitter six or more times a day, sometimes at regular intervals but usually in clumps between copywriting projects. 
  • I link to my posts from Twitter and G+, usually about twice a week, but I mostly stick to text-based Tweets without links. I rarely use hashtags and don’t usually join in with FollowFriday etc because I’m too busy.
  • I always reply to people’s Twitter questions and comments and I favourite / retweet Tweets I genuinely like. I get involved with conversations on Twitter when they’re fun, funny, inspiring, local or relevant to my work. And I have a giggle as often as I can.
  • On Twitter I follow 270-ish people. Any more and I can’t engage with them properly because there’s too much going on. I’ve generated just over 500 Twitter followers so far, all perfectly naturally, no real effort required. It just happened.
  • I upload interesting images now and again – absolutely nothing to do with my copywriting work, just for fun. And while I drop my top key terms into Twitter and G+ occasionally, I don’t do it so often it looks contrived.

I’m a bit crap at engaging on Google + but I’m getting there, squeezing it into my routine and doing the same stuff I do on Twitter while slowly (very!) beefing up my Circles.

Working both ways

When I needed a hairdresser, I found a salon that sounded nice and friendly on Twitter. When I needed a ring altered I found a jeweller via Twitter. Liked the cut of their jib. Visited their website. Booked online. Job done.

Diving in

In my experience social media ‘marketing’ is quick and easy. Attracting business through Twitter and G+ is simpler than I expected it to be. And it’s uncannily powerful stuff – I don’t mind admitting I’m both surprised and impressed.
If you haven’t tried it yet, come on in… the water’s lovely.