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Driving Traffic with Twitter

Twitter Can Be a Primary Traffic Source

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Reports suggest that social networking is now more popular than email. Twitter in particular grew 33% in only a month according to Compete data. Skittles increased its own traffic by 1332% in one day after a campaign that sent Skittles.com directly to a Tweet-stream (the site has since moved to different strategies of a similar nature like a Facebook page and currently a Wikipedia entry, which is in itself another interesting story).

 Do you have tips on how to use Twitter to drive traffic? Tell us… 

Skittles Twitter Marketing

Many brands large and small are realizing the potential that Twitter provides. "As exciting as it may be to hear about what your friends, or total strangers for that matter, ate for breakfast, some companies are realizing that a more effective use of Twitter is to mine it for clients, recruit employees and answer customer service questions," notes Kim Hart with the Washington Post.

John Battelle Twitter is becoming a primary traffic source for many sites as John Battelle points out (Facebook is driving a lot of traffic as well). This will only continue to become truer as real-time search continues to grow.

"Social search has been predicted (and funded) for years," says Battelle. "It’s finally happening. The conversation is evolving, from short bursts of declared intent inside a query bar, to ongoing, ambient declaration of social actions. Both will continue, but it’s increasingly clear why Google’s obsessed with Facebook (and Facebook with Twitter). And they are not alone."

MarketingPilgrim’s Andy Beal and many others expect Twitter to eventually be acquired by Google. "Twitter is becoming an important communications channel–intrinsic to the web," says Beal. "Aside from the being able to pick up the company for a fraction of the $15 billion Google has in cash, Twitter is a key component of the search engines’ ambitious goal: to organize the world’s information." Beal finds what he perceives to be hints in the following interview with Google CEO Eric Schmidt.

And again, there is of course that whole need for real-time search thing. But Twitter’s finally just getting its own search in the spotlight (you can search within your own friends/followers with Twellow now) . There are even featured users showcased, which may or not be an indication of the widely speculated-upon revenue model for the company (Twitter might even start serving local news too).

"When people ask me when Twitter will make money, I tell them, ‘In due time,’ says Twitter CEO Evan Williams in a quick bio-piece chronicling his professional life up to the present. "They forget that we’re only 30 employees who have just gotten started. Right now, anything we would do to make money would take our time away from acquiring more users. We have patient investors."

The average user doesn’t care about how Twitter is monetizing its business though. And the users are what drive any success that it will ever have. Users are clearly finding plenty to get out of the service. It hasn’t jumped the shark yet.

Evan Williams Goes to the White House

In fact, it plays so big a role on the Internet that it earned Williams a trip to the White House with a number of other tech leaders. We don’t exactly know the product of conversations that came from that, though Data.gov, another site from the Obama administration to be launched, was announced shortly after that meeting. Some wonder if the site and the meeting are related.

Regardless of how much influence Twitter is having or is not having in Washington, there is no denying that it has made a tremendous impact on the web in general and the way people and businesses communicate (it’s even inspired a similar model from social network king Facebook).

What businesses can get out of Twitter:

- Traffic. Social networks have taken over email in terms of popularity. Twitter is a very popular one, and continues to grow rapidly.

- People can "opt in" to follow your Tweets, so your messages will be well targeted. This makes it a great place to make announcements to your most loyal customers.

- Twitter can serve as a great channel for customer service if you keep up with it like these brands are.

- It lets you interact with the public while increasing brand awareness

- Twitter’s search function can help businesses better manage their online reputations in real time.

- Facebook apps can let you update Twitter/Facebook together. This means your Tweets can become your Facebook status and vice versa. Facebook is the most popular network around. Between Facebook and Twitter, you can build quite a following.

There are quite a few benefits for a company without a known revenue model and a service that many people still don’t understand the point of. As Twitter grows, that seems to be changing though.

Update: Listen to what avid Twitterer Michael Gray has to say about making Twitter work for you in this exclusive interview from PubCon:

 >>> Are you seeing traffic from Twitter? Comment here.

 

Give us your tips on driving Twitter Traffic and BUSINESS …

Driving Traffic with Twitter
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  • http://www.techknowl.com techknowl

    Skittles example shows that how Twitter can be used to build web traffic .Twitter is slowly molding themselves to be a site with great advertising potential and community influence .

  • http://ezrealestatemarketing.com real estate internet marketing

    For the most part Twitter is still with early adopters but it is absolutely blowing up. It’s already happening but I can see even more companies using it to build their brands and using it for customer service. Try complaining about customer support with a major company on Twitter and find out how quickly you receive a nice reply back with how someone from the company can help.

    Increased search features from Twitter is going to greatly increase the possibilities.

    http://www.twitter.com/JaredDetroit

  • http://www.ericmaas.com Eric Maas

    Twitter is massive, I was hesitant to join, still am about updates, but it brings in the traffic to my companies site and press releases, so I do not complain.

  • http://www.twitter.com/Aneeb Aneeb Mohammed

    The reach and influence twitter had brought in is enormous. It makes the world as smaller and reachable as possible. Its amazing that twitter got a huge space among the corporates within a span of few months. Let us hope for the best and contribute our part to the web through Twitter. LOL !

  • http://www.tweetmyjobs.com Gary

    Check out www.tweetmyjobs.com. It’s one of the first solid business applications on Twitter for job seekers and employers.

  • http://twitter.com/koyofur Dave

    I’m not sure about this because I don’t see much of an increase in hits when I use it to promote. But, if you don’t have a ‘big’ brand does it really work? That’s what I wan to know. Maybe if everyone here becomes a ‘follower’ of my tweets it might work (hint,hint).

    • Chris Crum

      It can help to grow your brand. You might not have much luck if you use Twitter alone, but if you integrate it into your marketing mix with blogs/articles, other social media and other forms of marketing, there’s a good chance you will gain more followers.

  • http://twitter.com/rhiebert88 R. Hiebert

    The social networking world does not rotate around Twitter and one should be broader based than only using one such as we see talked about here. Mind you, if the group that is the most responsive to the favorite themes and topics and it is productive for entertainment, education and energize, then I guess you are in the right place. I’d hate to educate the wrong people just where to find those others that work for social/networking purposes. I also don’t enjoy inviting the wrong type of traffic.

    • Chris Crum

      I am certainly not saying that Twitter is the only social network you should use. But there are plenty of opportunities that come with it as discussed.

  • http://Ublooper.com Ublooper

    Its like anything else … a little determination and some online friends can have a “massive effect” on your site or company.

    We just recently joined twitter about a week ago and its starting to go viral where traffic has increased and followers are steadily well… following our tweets.

  • http://www.sexyrealty.com/ Sexy

    I also agree it helps some and it also seems to be quickly eroding to the porn level. Of course perhaps we should expect that with a name like SexyRealty.com

  • http://printedproof.com christian

    Been on twitter for about 3 weeks. I have seen a moderate boost in traffic. Mostly traffic from people just browsing for more followers, but traffic none the less. Next step: learning how to build a stronger network and convert these additional eyeballs in to fans and sales. come check me out.

    http://twitter.com/printedproof

  • http://www.preferredseat.com/ GregC

    I have found Twitter does work well for getting your name out, but it does take a lot of time and effort, nothing comes easy.

  • http://www.FlipMyText.com Flip

    From personal experience, I utilize Twitter as my main marketing tool for cross promoting my online application. I truly believe it’s existence helped catapult my website into Top 200K Alexa Rankings. I average at least 1,000 unique visitors a day based on word of mouth alone. Zero advertising expenses! I’m seeing adsense revenue I’ve never had before since I started ‘Tweeting’. If done right, all it takes is one of your followers to ‘re-tweet’ something of value to their followers and it’s one big viral marketing effect.

    - Flip

  • http://www.medlawplus.com Joe

    I already write several blogs related to my commercial web site and maintain a massive user Q&A section related to products sold. So now I have to go twitter too (and pimp for followers)? Online marketing just keeps taking more time. I guess no one ever said this would be easy.

    • Chris Crum

      The online marketing industry evolves. There are always going to be new outlets that bring people in.

  • http://www.FriendConnectDirectory.com FriendConnect

    No doubt about it. Twitter is a great service, powered by brilliant marketing. Early adopters knew it was coming. It’s a great tool indeed to get the word out about your service. Don’t rely solely on it for all of your marketing. It takes time to build a base & business, no matter how great your Tweet is. I have met some great people in the social media world thru Twitter and only see great things in it’s future.

    Brian

  • http://www.phpgamespace.com CENetwork

    I started using twitter last month and I have to say I’m impressed. Thanks to twitter I got 100k more visits to my sites.

    The simplicity of twitter to set it all up is a big + compared to the troublesome signup/setup procedures of other social network sites.

    • http://www.phpgamespace.com CENetwork

      Overlooked the black yellow line asking to provide tips and hints regarding this article.

      Mine is really simple and not state of art, but it helped getting extra traffic.

      What did I do, a 5 minute job

      http://ce-ezine.com/2009/02/16/ce-goes-twitter/

      This tiny article explaining what I did might help others to set their first steps into twitter.

      md

  • http://ConcertPromotions.net Kevin

    There is no doubt that Twitter drives traffic. The key is finding the right mix of promoting your product or service and being a vibrant part of the twitter community with tweets a “regular Joe” can relate to. It’s OK to tweet about stuff unrelated to your product.

  • http://6in1incomestreams.blogspot.com/ Multiple Income Streams

    Twitter is now one of the most visited sites on the internet,
    it has grown so large that every major companies are running
    to it now and using it to offer more values to their customers
    like dell who made over $1 million offering discount cards on twitter to their customers.

  • http://mybuyweb.com Rodger

    I run a very good business that helps people make a lot of
    money online.
    I had a really hard time getting traffic to the site, but after
    I found twitter (4 days ago) My traffic went through the roof.
    So, Yes. Twitter is a great tool.

  • http://philsbiz.blogspot.com Phil Brown

    When I tweet I see a lot of traffic at my site YES it works well.

  • http://www.homebuyerguru.com Ted Williams

    Housing prices are ridiculously low, people should capitalize the great deals.

  • http://tweeter.com/changa74 Mr. CG

    Twitter is every bit as good and useful as being touted. This tool along with many others like it is the technology that is changing the playing field in internet marketing. We all know that things change swiftly in this industry, like how the internet made the world smaller and faster. E-mail sped up communication. Twitter, micro-blogging, is that much faster because it’s basically real time updating.

    So unlike most, don’t just blast your links or programs all day. Take time to build relationships with your (followers), establish and build trust and credibility. You can do this by simply telling them some of the non-internet things you do in your daily life so people can get to know the real you, not just the business you or “salesperson” you. ‘Tweet ya later!!

    CG

  • http://www.kamjah.com BusinessCoach2

    I learned here that facebook and twitter combination. It’s great tip. I own a life/business coaching website and hope that I will get good results at twitter.

  • http://www.myshopkart.net/fashions4flirts Fashions4Flirts

    I just started to use Twitter about a week ago and I have noticed an increase in sales at my online apparel store. I can’t say for sure if Twitter is responsible for the increase, but it seems like it is. So far, I have gotten more followers than I thought I would get. I really like it because I can post my new listings or items and not feel like I’m cramming the advertisement down people’s throats. If people are interested, they can click on my links or email me directly. It’s cool and I wish I would have joined Twitter a long time ago.

    If you want to Twitter with me: http://twitter.com/Fashions4Flirts

  • http://www.tweetlater.com/85174.html http://twitter.com/nita_o

    This is how I use Twitter to drive traffic to my business:

  • First: Set up twitter account mine is http://twitter.com/nita_o
  • Second: Set up My Tweet Later Account at http://twitpwr.com/7ZE . This is a Great free tool to set up a twitter auto responder that sends out a direct message to all those twitter followers. My message also contains a link to the business I am promoting at http://10kMatrix.2ya.com . If you have a long url I also suggest using short urls for twitter tool at http://twitpwr.com/52g There is a link at the top “Create Your TwitPwr Url Now”
  • Third: Lastly I signed up for Tweeter Getter at http://tweetergetter.com/nita_o This is a great tool helps you get 1000′s of legitimate twitter followers on autopilot. I just start using this tool last week and have 270 followers and growing! They also get my personal message I set up in step 2 above :)
  • I hope this helps you all in using twitter to drive traffic to your site or business.

    ~Juanita

  • http://travelsitecritic.com/ Best Travel Sites

    Thanks for this info. This should save me some research!

  • http://www.classiccarpartsclub.com Tony Lee

    There are many articles and blogs that cover the explosion of twitter in the recent past. I’m not a heavy twitter poster, but I must admit, it’s something that should not be taken lightly.

    One indication of its popularity might be the number of twitter plugins that are being created for WordPress.

    Ya gotta wonder…who else is climbing twitters ladder?

  • http://www.detector-pro.com Ukion

    Hi, I like to find and follow twitters which are interested of IT, software and tech (Windows, Linux MacOS) with one porpoise: exchange of last IT news in the modern computer world.
    Follow me at: http://www.twitter.com/ukion

  • http://www.theinternetglassescompany.co.uk AccuraX

    Im about to delve into the world of twitter to help my online glasses company that is due to be launched this month. I will make sure I post back and let you all know how I get on.

    Luv Accy

    • http://www.digitalid.co.uk Marco

      We’ve been using Twitter to promote our business for only a week or so, but allready we’re seeing small results… hope it just keeps growing

      Digital ID

  • http://ewas.attractionmarketingmanifesto.com EwaGusta

    I belive this is the best free twitter training at the moment, not only help you get started. Its give you the whole picture how to get something out from twitter with traffic and in a business sense thats make it much more easy for anyone who looking for this kind of information. http://twittertraining.pinurl.com

    If you find my tip useful, please reply a comment at www.twitter.com/ewagusta

  • http://uk-tv-guide.com/ Guest

    It’s all a lie.

    The idea that you might drive traffic to your site by “twittering” about your business is just a lie.

    Twitter is there only for people that don’t know how to add a blog to their site and write coherent sentences.

    No-one cares what YOU are doing now, no-one cares what YOU are thinking now. Unless you’re Stephen Fry or Leo Laporte of course…but you’re already a “celeb” so why try harder.

    Truth is that twitter makes ego combing easier because now you don’t have to actually have anything to say in order to say *something*.

    Wittering about twitter – just about sums up the whole embarrassing bebacle about twitter.

    Twittering is blogsterbation for those that cannot write a fricking sentence. There, I said it. Now let’s move on to something else.

    Oh and the only reason this craps gets bigged up is so the founders can get it bought by google. If it wasn’t for the “get invested” business model then twitter wouldn’t exist.

    • JohnnyB

      Wow. Your comment reveals the same sense of reality that made certain media analytics claim that “this whole internet thing will blow over” in 1995.

      Twitter has changed the way I work and how I gather information, and I’m pretty sure at least SOME of the 50 million+ active Twitterers will agree with me.

      -If your post was ironic, I fell for it.

      • http://www.fanhistory.com/ Laura

        Twitter isn’t getting 50 million unique visitors a month. How can they have that many active folks tweeting? If your comment was ironic, I feel for it.

    • John

      Yes, most tweets are just useless blabber, lots of nothing about nothing.

      However, it fits perfectly with our society and the the public sphere is heading — lots of nothing about nothing.

      So, Twitter will succeed, at least in the near term, and can be used to drive traffic, but if you like real information about real things (which most people don’t), look elsewhere.

      • http://www.fanhistory.com/ Laura

        I think that people are subjected to so many spam followers these days, and so much twitter noise in terms of people marketing at them (tweet about SEO and you’ll get at LEAST one person trying to sell you SEO services and five people following you) that they link advantage is minimal. Brand awareness, developing customer loyalty, getting bodies in a store, making them aware of deals you have, Twitter might be able to do that and be a better tool than say a traditional website… but Twitter itself is not going to drive traffic for most people. Heck, just look at TechCrunch to get a real feel for that. They have a huge follow list, actively tweet and their value is still one visit per month per follow on average in terms of the number of visits. They are in a space where their audience is likely to be Twitter savvy and interested in their content and they still can’t use it to help drive traffic.

        I think the spam ratio will just increase and will ultimately help FaceBook if FaceBook isn’t set on becoming Twitter… and FaceBook plays down the importance of established relationships.

        • http://www.thewritestuff.be/ Michael

          My own experience with two accounts (different purposes) is that Twitter traffic is minimal. However, it does enable you to “meet” people and this has been the only real benefit. The only links that I follow come from people with real, hard info to pass on – not sales pitches or funny photos. It’s worth thinking about before starting to twitter. You have to be ready to give more than receive. It’s a question of earning trust.

    • http://www.learnforexprofits.com LearnForexProfits

      I think you are very wrong. I’ve been on Twitter one week and the amount of visits from targeted twitters has been substantial. I think the key is having the right approach to drawing them to your offering.

  • http://www.susuh.de @susuh

    Just tweeted a link to the post; thanks for taking the time.

  • http://keyknowhow.com know how

    We’re starting with using of twitter. We’ll see what will be happening.

  • http://www.all4info.page.tl RaZikhanpk

    I have made site for you,student,Music lover,Sports Lover,who loves to read newspapers,Want to get loan,& Web Hostings…
    everything is for all of u ppl

  • http://chris-fallingtears.blogspot.com/ chris

    There is a lot of twittering going on, I hope it will drive traffic my way.

  • http://www.mdtcs.com Festus

    I just started using twiter, I have not see much yet, I think twiter is a good tool to support customers and it will help in the long run.

  • http://officialsafetyandsecurity.com Debbie Morgan

    for socially marketing my safety and security web site but am fairly new so I’m not reaping any benefits just yet. I’m hoping to be able to learn a bit more and utilize it to it’s fullest soon. Thanks, Chris, for this great information.

  • http://www.rentnewyorkonline.com Rent New York

    Looks like I need to start using twitter… any suggestions on how to get started?

  • http://www.straightalk.biz STRAIGHTALK

    Once you have learned this you do great on twitter..

    Norman Flecha
    http://www.151years.com

    • http://www.rentbrandon.com Apartments for Rent in Brandon, Fl

      but really, I think SPAM is better for breakfast then lunch… spam and eggs anyone?

  • http://www.virtuallyready.com Lisa Duhamel

    I also use Twitter (and have it plugged into Facebook and other social platforms). When utilized correctly, Twitter can (and will) drive traffic to your website. A few Twitter Tips for biz: Your Name, URL and BIO should be filled out, you should have a photo up to represent you and/or your brand and you should have a Public profile. Share your links (but only occasionally) as well as those from your friends / biz partners – a combination of industry-relevant information is sure to do well for your biz! A nice, balanced combo of “what are you doing + info sharing / re-tweets” seems to be a nice way to go for biz folk.

  • http://travelsitecritic.com/ best travel sites

    Its good to hear that I am not the last one to jump on the twitter bandwagon. Apparently, there are many other readers here that have yet to tweedt. After reading this and hearing about twitter constantly in the media, I suppose its time to get on it!

  • http://www.korect.com/iam/tim25 tim

    well i have been getting traffic but i believe not from twitter…i have been doing some other methods marketing. I need help.

  • http://dailycomputertips.blogspot.com jai

    im yet to explore the power of twitter

  • http://www.ammgospel.com N.C JACKSON

    That’s quite true Twitter is becoming an effective tool in getting services and products known.

  • http://www.webandrank.com Alessandro Filippi

    I see in the next future socila web like twitter become source of work for many people in all type of business.

  • http://world-mall.org Tony

    its very true we have high trafiic to our site www.world-mall.org which comes via Twitter

  • http://www.metrodetroit-homes.com Cathy Tishhouse

    I create/manage several websites and track visits and today I received traffic from Twitter. It took me a while to jump on Twitter as I didn’t “get” it or it’s importance. I am now a big fan and seeing the traffic is a big plus.

    • http://www.fanhistory.com/ Laura

      How much traffic are you getting? How does it compare to your other traffic attaining activities? Is Twitter worth it in terms of ROI?

    • http://www.earringsforever.com EarRings

      I’m interested on how you did this, can you expound some more on your tactics, etc… I’m sure we all could learn from your experience.

  • http://africanweightloss.blogspot.com african weight loss diva

    A lot of people are ignorant about twitter!

  • http://www.fanhistory.com/ Laura

    “Twitter Can Be a Primary Traffic Source”

    TechCrunch reported that they got about one visit per user that followed them a month. Brand awareness maybe but primary traffic source? I doubt it. If the average company or brand was having a better result, I’m sure we’d be getting real metric information about it. We aren’t really. (Outside of Dell.) I use Twitter and we got 157 visits from Twitter so far this month with a total number of followed of about 2,500. What other sort of metrics do you have to support this? What case studies have been done?

  • http://www.fanhistory.com/ Laura

    “Regardless of how you feel about it, if it can drive traffic to you website its worth investing time in”

    Incorrect. If you need to spend 20 hours on Twitter to realize 10 visits… and you can spend the same 20 hours on FanPop, get 20 visits from FanPop and increase your search engine traffic by 5 visits, then it isn’t worth investing your time in Twitter if your goal is to increase traffic because the ROI is not that good.

  • http://www.thingswomanwant.com Guest

    Well, I’ve only recently started to try and market my website as this is a completely new venture for me. I’m not sure I still really understand the meaning of twitter to be honest, but from the feedback I have read on it so far it seems to be a substantial means to improve your web traffic if used correctly. I’m going to give it a shot anyway and shall let you know how I get on!

  • http://www.crearecommunications.co.uk Nick Rinylo

    That crazy increase in traffic must have helped their organic listings, One thing i have wondered about is the fact that twitter converts URL’s into Tiny URL’s? Why does it do this and not just make the links ‘no follow’

    • http://www.all4data.com All4Data

      tiny urls is to do with the amount of characters allowed in a post I suppose?