Editor’s Note: This post has been updated with fresh information
With 328 million monthly active users on Twitter (Statistica, Q2 ’17), finding leads for your business on Twitter can seem like a daunting task.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with Socedo, it is a platform that collects and analyzes millions of tweets each day. Socedo lets you find your target audience based on conversational and biographical keywords found in people’s Twitter pages (profiles and Tweets) and their LinkedIn profiles. Our system also matches up social profiles with people’s current professional profiles (where they work, job title) and provide you new leads for your email marketing effort. Sign up for a free 7-day trial.
With that said, here is the keyword strategy to help you find new business leads on Twitter.
Use job titles and descriptive keyword phrases found on people’s Twitter and LinkedIn Profiles
Socedo finds your target audience based on keywords found on people’s Twitter and LinkedIn profiles. You want to enter the job titles of the people you want as leads. For example, if you’re selling IT Management software, this could include people such as IT directors, IT managers/administrators, CTOs, and CIOs.
If you’re having trouble coming up with a list, I recommend you add the job titles of your current customer. Remember that b2b purchase decisions normally involve at least two or more decision-makers, so make sure to include the job titles of everyone who would be involved in purchasing your product or service.
As long as your biographical keywords are relevant to your target audience, put in as many variations of these keywords as you can to gather a large and relevant prospect pool. You can use our keyword suggestions tool to automatically find variations of job titles to add to your campaign.
Add Keywords Related to Business Activities in Your Space
With Socedo, you can search for people who recently showed interest in your space – whether it’s people who followed your competitors, mentioned an industry influencer, or people using keywords related to business issues or emerging technologies in tweets.
For example, if you are looking to reach IT decision-makers who are thinking about how to streamline IT operations in the cloud, you can search for people who have taken actions such as:
- Following or engaging with IT industry influencers
- Follow or engage with IT publications (i.e. @CIOMagazine, @CIOOnline, @InformationWeek)
- Following or engaging with a leading technology company in the cloud technology ecosystem (i.e. @AWS, @Azure)
- Mentioning key events in the cloud ecoystem (#ReInvent by AWS)
- Mention a popular IT technology topic (i.e. Active Directory, managed services, mobiledev)
Now, let’s dive into each of these keyword categories.
1. Industry Influencers
When selecting influencer accounts to add to your keyword set, here’s a few tips to keep in mind:
Aim for micro-influencers, or individuals who specialize in your particular vertical or topic niche and frequently share social media content about their interests. Unlike traditional “influencers” (celebrities), micro-influencers have a more modest number of followers – typically in the thousands of tens of thousands – but they boast hyper-engaged audiences.
To identify the right influencers, you can poll your customers and find out who are the industry thought leaders they follow and respect. Take a glance at the account’s “followers” page and see if there’s a pattern of people who are professionals in your target audience. Some quick searches online for “[industry specific] thought leader” will most likely help you uncover a list of viable candidates.
Note: If you put @[Influencer Handle] into Socedo, Socedo will pick up both followers of that individual and the people who mention them in a tweet (or retweet their content). It is possible that some followers are people who haven’t recently logged into Twitter. If you want Socedo to only pick up people who were active on Twitter recently, be sure to enter the influencer’s handle without the “@” symbol.
2. Industry publications
You can also find your prospects by adding the Twitter handles of well-respected publications in your industry. The same rules on selecting industry influencers apply to selecting publications. You want to find publications that cover your specific topic rather than general interest publications. For example, if you are looking for data storage professionals, it’s better to find niche publications like TechTarget SearchStorage (@SearchstorageTT) rather than a Forbes.com
3. Complementary technology companies or alliance partners
Do you have technology partners or channel/alliance partners?
In Socedo, you can find people who are mentioning or following your partner companies. For example, Socedo integrates with the major marketing automation platforms including Marketo, Hubspot, Oracle Eloqua and Salesforce Pardot. So, we can target marketers who are following or mentioning these technology companies and let them know about the value Socedo can bring to their marketing automation platform.
4. Industry conferences, events and tradeshows
According to Twitter, hashtag, or the # symbol, is used to mark keywords or topics in a Tweet. It was a created by Twitter users organically to categorize the messages.
Are you sponsoring a particular industry conference? Or just want to reach people who are attending a particular conference?
These days, every industry conference or tradeshow comes with its own hashtag. You can use the event hashtag to find people who engaged with the event and strike up a conversation with them while the topic of the event is top of mind.
For example, HostingCon Global was an event that occurred July 24-27th aimed at website administrators and cloud professionals. Sound like your target audience? The hashtag #HostingCon was tweeted out over 1,500 hundred times in just the last two days of the conference. That’s potentially 1,000+ warm prospects for your business.
5. Hashtags on key topics related to your business space
Topical hashtags also can help you identify leads for your business. For example, if you are already using certain hashtags to tag your own posts on Twitter to make them more discoverable, you can use those same hashtags to search for your target audience in your lead generation campaign.
How to determine if a keyword is bringing you a relevant audience
Now, you may be wondering, even if I find a lot of people using a keyword, how do I know that these are potential leads for my business?
It’s easy to judge the efficacy of a keyword in Socedo, because we provide our customers with keyword level reporting on each campaign.
Once you have let a campaign run for at least a few days (we recommend 3-5 days to be safe), you should have enough data to tell whether a keyword is working or not.
For each campaign, Socedo will tell you how each keyword is performing in terms of:
- How many people have been discovered by the keyword, in a given timeframe
- How many people followed you back
- How many people responded to your direct message – if your campaign sends direct messages
- How many people clicked on the link in your direct message – if your direct message contains a URL
- How many people converted – if your direct message took people to a landing page and asked them to fill out a form
To evaluate the relevance of a keyword, take a look at keyword volume and follow-back rate.
Volume: Are there enough people using this keyword on Twitter? If you’ve let your campaign run for several days and only a small handful of people have used that keyword, it’s time to delete it from your campaign. On the other hand, if a keyword is bringing you over a hundred people and people are following you back at a decent rate (at least 5%), it’s a good keyword to keep in your campaign.
Follow-back rate: follow-back rate is an indicator of whether a keyword is attracting the right audience. If you’re targeting B2B marketers (as an example) and a particular keyword is only generating a 1%, 2 % or 3% follow-back rate, that means it’s not targeted enough. On the other hand, if a keyword has a 10% follow-back rate or a 15% follow-back rate, it is highly relevant to your target audience.
Based on our experience, when selecting keywords, there is typically a trade-off between volume and follow-back rate. Keywords that are used by a lot of people are inherently broader and tend to have somewhat lower follow-back rates than lower-volume keywords. We recommend you experiment with different keywords to see what works best for you.
If you want more insights on how to craft your keyword strategy, check out our recent study that analyzes how our entire customer base is using keywords on Twitter to reach their target audiences. In here, we reveal the top performing keywords and hashtags based on user engagement and conversion metrics. You can download this study here.
To make keywords work for you, it comes down to being as specific as you can without limiting yourself. This sounds like a paradox, but I assure you, by practicing and by looking at the results (in Socedo), before you know it, you’ll be using keywords to find thousands of relevant leads on Twitter through Socedo.