Twitter launched its @earlybird service back in July, but it was recently announced that the company was “setting aside” the discount program for a period of time, reported Leena Rao of TechCrunch.com (Sept. 28). The EarlyBird program, Rao writes, allowed advertisers to distribute offers via the @earlybird account. “They get to determine the terms of the offer, including availability, amount, and pricing. Deals are published via the @earlybird handle several times a week.
Even though Twitter has gone back to the drawing board with the service, it doesn’t mean you can’t still offer deals to customers via the popular application.
Sabrina of the Geekpreneur.com team, offered a few points (July 29) to help you make the most of call-to-action discount tweets. “The format is important,” she says. “In 140 characters, you’re not going to have a lot of space to deal with objects, build desire or even write headlines: the key ingredients of successful copywriting.”
She suggests including the items on offer, the size of the offer, its duration and a link that allows followers to capitalize on it. For example: Great deal from our friends @moxsie- Their best in shoes, headphones, apparel & more, for 30% off. Today only! http://t.co/NGizKAe
Repeat your sales message… in a fun way.Sabrina says repetition is important, since most followers follow multiple timelines. “If you have hundreds of tweets flowing through your Twitter page, many are likely to be missed, so sending the same message multiple times is an essential element of Twitter-based marketing.”
Each appearance should be phrased differently.Avoid reader boredom by subtly altering the message for each iteration.
Ads are not yet targeted, location-based or category-based. “Other sellers are already there,” Sabrina writes. “Amazon has an ‘official Twitter feed’ but also runs several other timelines, including the general @amazondeals, which lists all sorts of quick bargains marked as ‘Lightning Deals!,’ and specific category timelines such as @amazongames. That timeline contains a number of different kinds of tweets. The account’s 20,000-plus followers can read specific game-related ‘lighting deals,’ news about product releases, and of course, cash in on offers for the time-limited, supply-limited, or both.” For example: Limited Time: Assassin’s Creed II for PC is $14.99 while supplies last. http://amzn.to/bH9Ac7
The relationship is as important as the offer.“Creating multiple Twitter accounts to manage different product categories is an important solution for large retailers, but not for smaller firms selling only one type of product,” Sabrina writes. “Twitter is a personal place and businesses do best when they can create real relationships with their followers.”
Show followers you care about giving them a deal.Dell, for example, has enjoyed great success (a reported $6.5 million in sales through Twitter, as of July) by building personal relationships, she writes. “(The company) includes the name of the person who writes the tweets and provides a picture of her. The timeline also (replies) to followers’ questions, and most intriguingly, is sometimes able to direct followers to specific coupons.” For example: @auzzebearThere is a 15% coupon here that would work: http://del.ly/6016E6I
“That kind of personal service helps followers see that the company genuinely wants to assist them,” Sabrina writes.
I know if a company I was following went out of its way to grant me a discount, I’d be happy enough to tell my friends and family about it (i.e. effective viral marketing). So, make sure you repeat your discount messages, keep your timeline personal and build deal-making relationships with your followers. “And of course,” Sabrina concludes, “you’ll need to have products that people want to buy!”