(part 4.1 of 7)
Twitter ROI Definition
In speaking about how to improve our Twitter marketing ROI, first we must decide what we mean when we say investment and return when we discuss Twitter.
Investment, as Twitter is a free online service, should be defined as the time we spend using Twitter. When possible, a monetary value should be placed on this amount of time, reflecting how much value could be made in spending the time doing other activities.
Return should always be defined as how much bottom line revenue you get from the investment. In the case of Twitter, these bottom line returns will have to be extrapolated from such metrics as increased traffic to site, increased follower base, increased influence base, etc. We must calculate how much revenue is generated by these metrics increasing, and use this in our ROI calculation.
Improving Twitter ROI
Having now defined what we mean by ROI, there are two ways that it can be increased – reducing investment or increasing return. It common terms, what we want to do is increase our Twitter proficiency (using it faster) and quality (getting the most out of our tweets). This post will focus on increasing proficiency.
Increasing proficiency in Twitter can be broken down into two categories: Learning and using the best tools to make Tweeting quick and easy, and finding out how much time is optimal to spend on Twitter.
Learning and Using the Best Tools
First, learning and using the best tools. Although there are many tools and services that exist to help you use Twitter, I have included four here to keep things simple. When used together, these tools are fairly comprehensive in scope and can give you the abilities and information you need to effectively use Twitter. Become acquainted a proficient with these tools to make Twitter quick and easy. We will discuss further how to use the information from these tools for analytics in the next post.
Hootsuite – A browser client that allows you to track all of your Twitter activity. I’ll let you see their site for all the features, but basically this tool is used to actually do your tweeting and track others tweets.
Twitoaster – Use this to see complete conversation threads and get the context of tweets. This tool also has a nice search function so you can look for relevant topics and conversations you might want to participate in.
Optimal Time to Spend on Twitter
Secondly, you must find out how much time is optimal for you to spend on Twitter. If you are spending 10 minutes a week, you’re probably not doing enough to generate any kind of revenue. On the flip side, spending hours a day and filling twitter with a surplus of your tweets can also be harmful (not only because you lose time, but because you lose followers).
The best way I have found to do this is to try out different systems. For one month, you can give yourself 10-15 minutes daily to use Twitter, and track your success. Next month, try upping the time to about 30 minutes a day, and compare that to the previous month. Do as many iterations of this as you need to find your optimal time.
Because different business profit in different ways by using Twitter, the only way to get an optimal time is to try it and test it. However, when you look at each month and compare, just remember to keep in mind that there are other factors as well determining your success or failure (such as Tweet quality). The next post will discuss the analytics of discovering tweet quality and comparing month to month success levels.
Anyone have further suggestions on how to optimize your time spent on Twitter?