I’m often asked, “how do you use Twitter for your selling activities?”
Twitter is a primary resource for me to listen, learn and conduct research. I find great ideas, articles and people through Twitter. I curate important and long-life content as an essential, almost daily practice.
My rule is, if it’s a good article and worth sharing, it’s worth sharing many times over time. I curate to Microsoft OneNote to support this practice.
“It’s not information overload. It’s filter failure.”— Clay Shirky
Using Twitter to listen to topic specific conversations is a skill we really need to develop. I don’t have time to listen to everything. By selecting and cultivating people who share my interests, I leverage their research, insights, ideas and conversations.
I pick up themes, topics and keywords that help me further my listening, but in an efficient way. I acquire articles, quotations, research and facts I can use in my content.
The people I follow regularly tweet and post links to articles, reference sources and tools that provide an efficient way to learn new ideas. I’ve developed the habit of replacing my morning newspaper with Twitter. Using Hootsuite, I’m able to categorize the primary topics I’m interested in learning about. Using #hastags and Twittersearch I’m able to quickly retrieve conversations and their related links.
Articles I curate are shared with everyone in our organization through links into our wiki.
We’ve recently adopted the practice of immediately creating email and social media posts for important articles. These are shared through the wiki. This means others can instantly deliver articles without having to stop and write an email or social post. “Write once, deliver many times!”
Before working on a specific target sales account, I search Twitter to find conversations about the company. I look for news and events, topics and issues they are sharing. I try to learn about existing service provides that might complement or compete with my services.
Often this has uncovered new people I need to contact who I was not aware of. Contacting these people through Twiter has proven to be a much more effective technique than phone or email.
If I find people at the company who work in functions that are relevant to me, and they are on Twitter, I follow them. It’s a great first step, and the next best thing, to being in direct relationship. How else can you “listen in” to learn what they are thinking and saying.
My Daily Process
At breakfast, I open Hootsuite on my smartphone or tablet and start to review my tweets. As I find tweets that interest me or people in my organization, especially those with links to great resources, I simply email the tweet to myself or my colleagues.
I’ve set up Microsoft OneNote with folders for primary topic categories. Using their excellent Chrome plugin, I can highlight entire articles, or just sections of articles. The clip selector allows me to select the folder into which the selection will automatically be placed.
I can also email content directly into OneNote. I “tag” the content with keywords to make it fast and easy to find articles later. Having done this now for many years, I’ve developed a rich taxonomy. This informs new article selection, especially using Google Alerts.
I found this to be a fast, easy and interesting way to expand my listening, learning and research. I’m addicted.
Successful Sales People are Content Curators — curated article and example
Curation and the 30 60 10 Content Strategy