Tapping the Groundswell with Twitter

“But when it comes to twitter, you need to know that once your company starts to connect, people will expect the company to listen and respond, not just broadcast” (Li & Bernoff, 2011). 


image retrieved from: https://www.quora.com/Is-the-Twitter-bird-logo-trademarked

What makes Twitter so different from the rest? Well:

  • Followers : Quickly allows connections to be established, either from a pre established status, such as a celebrity, or simply posting interesting content.
  • Hashtages & Searches:  Using the pound/hash sign, companies and individuals can unitize this tool to search for trending topics.
  • Mentions & Retweets: allows the spreading of ideas or a communication to develop using the “@” sign.
  • Links: Using links to websites and attaching a short blurb attached to it, companies can use this to tweet new offers and contents.
  • Lists: You are able to see the list others have made of influential people to follow.
  • Apps & Tools: Ex:  TweekDeck, an application used to collect mentions and searches


Looking at the Social Technographics profile of tweeters, we can see statistics given to these highly socially connected group of individuals.


image retrieved from: 5788456879_1bb5f0fbcf_z.jpg 

Objectives of Twitter:

Twitter is quite versatile as opposed to its competitors. McDonalds used Twitter for both for talking and supporting. It can be used for each of the 5 groundswell objectives by (1) listening, because you are able to look at trends and identify if any influential individuals are talking about the brand. Next, (2) talking, has been utilized by Dell (@DellOutlet) which gives out sales on PC’s. Energizing (3) on twitter is focused on responding and retweeting by finding people who like your service or products. Dunkin’ Donuts does this often by responding to their fans and utilizes active marketing managing. Many companies and individuals who are influential are (4) supporting twitter by answering and responding to those who have questions or complaints, such as AT&T (@ATT). In the previous chapter, the concept of (5) embracing was examined. This can be done on Twitter, and has been done, by several companies. Starbucks using the account @mystarbucksideas to promote and drive individuals to use the ideas of their community.

Utilizing Twitter is a great strategy for almost any business as it is so simple to use and once an objective and strategy has been set, it is a powerful tool. Some advice to use even beyond Twitter strategies include:

  1. Locking up your handle (become verified)
  2. Listening first
  3. Be ready to support people
  4. Follow others
  5. Be ready for a crisis
  6. Respond, retweet, and link
  7. Staff it – twitter needs to be somebody’s job and IN their job description
  8. Check with legal and regulatory staff
  9. Don’t waste your following

With my profession, it would be useful to be able to work for a company that utilizes a tool that I have been familiar with since 2009. When it first came out, I did not realize the potential for it, but now that it has been growing, it is a great tool for businesses and individuals to utilize to reach out to a large number of people. The simplicity in its design makes it easy for any organization to adapt. For the HR realm, it could even serve useful to find retain and attract a potential talent pool by posting ads and job hiring links followed by a link to submit your resume and check out the companies website. Many organizations already due this, such as the one here posted for a social restaurant in the states. 



Li, C., & Bernoff, J. (2011). Groundswell: Winning in a world transformed by social technologies. Boston: Harvard Business Press.


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