11 Ways To Generate New Customers From Twitter

11 Ways To Generate New Customers From Twitter

Why is Twitter great for social promotion?

Since its launch in 2006, Twitter has managed to build up a base of 255 million users interacting with one another. This audience is constantly conversing about, sharing, and promoting the brands and products they love. Inevitably this leads people to discover new products that fit their interests. This desire is what creates the multi-billion dollar value that Twitter brings to our modern society.

According to AddShoppers’ 2013 social-ecommerce report, Twitter drives more clicks per product share than other social button. This is most likely due to Twitter’s openness. The capability to publicly see what others are saying about a certain product or brand makes positive conversation within the ‘Twitterverse’ so valuable.

The big question, though, is “how can this all benefit your company?”

The answer is simple, get involved! We’ve all heard 1,000 times that you should be using Twitter to help manage customer support, answer questions sent to you, etc. etc. but here are 11 amazing ways to leverage the 255 million user network to generate new customers:

Get others to promote you.

1.  Social unlock promotions/ Group Unlocks -

Develop promotions and deals that don’t get made publicly available unless a certain minimum of social actions occur. Be sure to monitor the promotion heavily though to ensure that users aren’t gaming the system with fake accounts. This method not only helps get the word out about the sale but also drives immediate purchases from many the users who were interested enough to share in the first place.

Here is an example of Bonobos leveraging this type of campaign. This promoted tweet resulted in 1,200% return on investment!

2.  Create a contests that show off your brand and/or products.

Twitter contests and giveaways don’t always have to be “RT this/RT that” or “follow us to be entered to win. Get your current customers to show off the products that they adore to your new potential customers. Develop social campaigns that encourage content and image creation so that prospective customers as well as the contest entrant’s followers and friends can see what your brand and products are all about. Be sure to Retweet and Favorite the best entries to provide a larger/permanent audience to the content.

3.  Leverage/create partnerships

Find non-competing companies and users who have already captured the audience you’re looking for. Share content with them that they’d be interested in promoting to their followings. Example: If you’re about to run a promotion that gives 20% off of a certain product, get the Twitter influencers who love to promote sales/discounts to their followings to share your promotion as well.

Other potential partnership opportunities could stem from:

  • Brands you sell
  • Distributors
  • Relevant & influential endorsers
  • Media/News partnerships

4.  Favorite and RT positive tweets about your company and products

Due to Twitter’s public nature, when people are surfing for information about your products and brand they’re able to see anything posted. Twitter’s natural state in search is to show the “Top” tweets about whatever the search topic turned up. The “Top” posts are a factor of someone’s following, relevance, originality, and the level of interaction that’s occurred with that Tweet. Help boost the positive mentions by favorite-ing, replying to, and retweeting them to your and the greater audience.

Show off your products

5.  Utilize Twitter product cards

When you apply product card meta data to your products it enhances the experience for browsing users when they find tweets about your products. It takes the simple, text only tweet and expands it to include a product images, description, and two details that you find important to include such as the product’s price, availability/stock, size options, location it’s available in, etc.

When applied, Harvey’s Furniture tripled its click throughs as soon as product cards became active for its products (more info here). The increased experience adds a layer of detail that separates posts about your products from the clutter.

This is an example of an expanded tweet where I included a link of a product page from QuikShoppa.com.

In order to include product cards though, they must be approved by the validator tool provided by Twitter: https://dev.twitter.com/docs/cards/validation/validator

6.  ReTweet and Favorite great looking photos that customers take of themselves interacting with your products/brand

Not only should you be broadcasting customer’s enjoyment and love for products during content creation contests but continue it on a regular basis as well. Potential customers can only capture so much information from the descriptions, reviews, and product images that you publish on the product page. Help promote user content so they can see things from current customer’s perspectives as well.

7.  Embed images posted of a product being used onto the product’s page

Allow users browsing through your store to see the positive experiences that people before them had but didn’t talk about in a formal review.

BlackMilkClothing publishes images of their customers wearing their unique apparel that appear on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram directly on the related product page. It allows online window shoppers to directly see what it may look like on them as well as the different looks that can be created with the products, giving them ideas about what they can do with the clothing item themselves. In addition to boosting interest in the product, it pushes people to visit the social media post that they like which could result in additional retweets, pins, likes, etc on the post about their company.

Target your target audience's conversations

8.  Interact with people asking questions about the products you sell… even if they didn’t direct the question at you.

Hopefully by now, it’s common knowledge that if a potential customer tweets a question about a product to you… you answer it! This is the most basic principle of social media based customer service and support. While managing this basic level of support does help customers decide if they want to buy and increases satisfaction, it doesn’t always drive others to buy. Every now and then there may be some overlay of someone looking to have the same question answered but they may not find it if they’re not looking at your company/feed already.

Do searches or add automatic notifications using ifttt (If this then that) for products you sell plus a question mark. Example search: (Product + “?”) This will return all tweets that had a question mark in them, typically meaning someone needs information immediately, as shown in the image.

As you can see from the example posted above, 2 of the 5 tweets are people looking to borrow a portable grill. This opens up the door for a company like Northline Express to send a temporary deal saying: “Why not just buy one instead, here is an exclusive 10% off coupon on our portable grills. (code)”.

You can also include search phrases like ‘anyone recommend’ or ‘any advice’ to filter for more tweets looking for public assistance. Answer any questions you find! If they’ve already been answered add onto to the answer’s information.

9.  Find creative ways to tie your brand into current trending topics and tags to get noticed by like minded/interested individuals.

Admittedly, this is one of the hardest social media tactics to achieve. It takes speed and creativity to come up with clever content before the trending topic dies. While it’s the hardest, it also has one of the largest rewards: Virality!

During Superbowl XLVII the power went out abruptly in the stadium as a large portion of the nation watched.  Within seconds everyone who was near their phone or computer was posting the funniest comments they could come up with about the power outage. Thinking quickly,  the team at Oreo managed to put out a post that caught the attention of everyone talking about the topic. While anyone can make jokes that go viral, tying it to your brand/product though is the key in making it matter for your business.

10.   Develop intrigue around your Tweets. Give them a reason to read on, share, and come to the site.

All too often do we post tweets where they goal is to attract the attention of the reader to the post itself. There’s nothing wrong with this, however try to phrase tweets in a way that inspires intrigue to read on or act. We think of tweets as short messages but when we have a set goal in mind they need to be treated and phrased more like headlines. Ever wonder why many articles blow up on Twitter? It’s because people are sharing the headline, one which was initially created to inspire intrigue to read on and tell a friend.

11.  Pay to Play

Just because Twitter is free to use, that doesn’t mean it’s a free ride towards sales. Thousands of advertisers are utilizing Twitter lead cards, Account promotions, Trend promotions, and Twitter retargeting advertisements to promote their brand and account and many have managed to achieve high returns on their investments. Twitter promotions can be innovative and creative ‘viral campaigns’ but at their core they can be just like any other advertising plan; create advertisements, target your desired audience, and test your advertisements until one starts driving an ROI that makes it worth it.


Twitter is a great utility to help find and lead potential customers to your site and products. Break away from monotonous posts that aren't working and try some of these methods.

Have a suggestion to add or a question? Leave a comment below.

Written by: Mitchell Abdullah