Twitter Direct Messages: Your Next Direct-Marketing Breakthrough
If I could show you how to send hypertargeted 1:1 direct messages to an audience almost as large as the population of the United States, would you be interested? Below I explain this new opportunity for breakthrough direct marketing using Twitter direct messaging.
At 316 million users, Twitter has fewer than half the users of WhatsApp’ 800 million or Facebook Messenger’s 700 million, but it’s almost as many as the US population of about 322 million, which is no small thing, especially since Twitter users are known to include lots of great influencers such as celebrities and journalists. Twitter seems to be positioning itself as the latest entrant in the world of messaging, and if you use the following methods, you can get in on the ground floor of this new direct-marketing opportunity.
Twitter Changes Rules, Makes Direct Messaging Brand-Friendlier
Twitter’s direct messaging had two main roadblocks to using it as a direct-marketing channel. Specifically, each message was limited to 140 characters, and you could only send 250 direct messages per day. Those are some harsh limits, but the operative word here is “had.”
Last month, Twitter removed the 140-character limit from direct messages, so now you can really get some information across. Then, they also updated their daily limits, so now you can send up to 1,000 direct messages daily. This is great news, especially if you use Adobe Campaign, which can manage 1:1 personalized direct messages. With the new rules, you can really start getting some marketing mileage using Twitter Direct Messaging.
Still, 1,000 messages per day is not a lot, so you shouldn’t waste those sending an annoying and impersonal hello or welcome message to every new follower. You don’t know enough about them to move them toward a purchase. Instead, use the following list of ideas on how to get great results from this new channel.
Using Twitter Direct Messaging Efficiently
With only 1,000 messages daily, you need to be hypertargeted and completely personalized in what you send, and selective in choosing your recipients.
- Get approval from the customer first: Only send direct messages to customers who give you formal approval to do so through a preference center. Ignore this at your peril. Twitter users hate to receive spam from unknown brands, and if Twitter thinks you’re spamming their users, they may reduce your 1,000 per day limit severely, say to 0. Depending on your audience, willingness to receive messages through Twitter may vary widely. Moreover, as Twitter’s move to messaging is recent, few brands are using it to communicate with customers. This makes it an opportunity to be a pioneer and differentiate, but you’ll also have to educate Twitter users on this new usage, and the learning curve might be steep for some.
- Be selective about your recipients: Since 1,000 messages daily is not a lot in the world of business to consumer (B2C) marketing, you have to concentrate on consumers who have opted in, but beyond that, those who show a high propensity to respond and/or have a high lifetime value (LTV).
- Send trigger-based messages: For example, if someone is spending time in your men’s shoes department (which you’d know because you’re savvy enough to use beacons), send them a promo code for men’s shoes. If they’re still in the store, make it expire that day.
- Send recurring messages to top-value clients: For example, send your VIP clients special offers a week before their spouse’s birthday and on their anniversary. You know how helpful it can be if someone gives you a great gift idea when you forgot to go shopping until it’s almost too late. Of course, as a reminder, never send these messages before you get a green light from the Twitter follower.
- Personalize, personalize, personalize: If you know the client is big into golf, sending them an offer for a tennis racket is less likely to provide high ROI than sending them an offer for tickets to the 2016 PGA championship in Springfield, NJ. If you don’t know enough about a prospective customer, you should probably not use this channel to communicate with them, at least not until you learn more based on their purchases or their journey on your website.
Working through Adobe Campaign
Campaign allows you to set up a workflow that sends Twitter Direct Messages where the recipient fits a set of criteria, and where there’s a targeted opportunity. These messages can be personalized one-to-one like an SMS message or an email. Moreover, as Campaign is all about automating your processes, once you set up the different triggered campaigns you want, everything will work on its own. You’ll just have to learn by doing, analyzing reports and testing new communications. As a bonus, Twitter didn’t put a price on Direct Messaging so you can explore free of charge.
Twitter seems to be trying to come into an already-crowded field of messaging apps, competing with the likes of WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. This may explain why the company has relaxed its strict limits on direct message length and daily quotas. Take advantage of these new rules and follow the above guidelines, and your direct-marketing efforts can score a breakthrough against your competitors.