Why Are You Tweeting…?

Focusing on the ‘why’ behind the ‘how’

Stop me if you’ve heard this before: Your company’s marketing plan includes a launch event, press release, explainer video, media tour, ambassador program, print materials, celebrity partnerships, media buys, and demo sessions.

Your company’s comprehensive digital strategy: tweet PR coverage.

For a surprising number of organizations, digital communications is positioned as little more than the tag-along younger brother of public relations. The result is a sad, self-fulfilling prophecy; a catch-22 in which digital communications provides nothing of value, so no investment is made to grow it. In reality, a million dollar Ferrari will max out at 25 miles per hour if you never shift to second gear. Likewise, if all you do is tweet, then that’s all digital communications will ever be for you.

So let’s set expectations up front: your digital campaign will not go viral. (And that’s okay.)

Similarly, your brand will likely never appear on the Today Show, but that doesn’t mean you should abandon your public relations strategy, right? Online engagement is not a lottery ticket — it’s a process. It’s about clarifying objectives, developing an integrated, long-term strategy, and measuring the results.

And it starts with a question: Why are you tweeting?

If you’ve never asked yourself, then how do you know that you should be? If your answer is ‘visibility’ or ‘engagement’, that’s a start — but why does that matter? Digital communications is not about ‘Likes’, impressions, or retweets. It’s about revenue, partnerships, audience research, brand loyalty, and impact (i.e., all of the things you actually care about). If you’re not mapping your digital strategy to these fundamental outcomes and working backwards you’re missing the point.

The digital universe offers unparalleled opportunity to reach, engage, and grow your audience. With nearly half of humanity now online, there is no such thing as ‘digital communications’ anymore. It’s simply communications. And as with anything, you get out what you put in.

You’d never rely on a college student to manage your accounting. So why use one to lead your digital strategy?