Photo by Slava Bowman

How Playing The Matchmaker is the Best New Twitter Strategy for You in 2018

If you’re creating a new company, you need to get in on this.

Steve Campbell
Jun 22, 2018 · 7 min read

I’ve always been a big fan of Twitter. In fact, it’s probably my favorite social network of all-time…

Why? Because Twitter makes it really easy to be yourself. It has very little constraints (other than the 280-character limit, of course), it’s a great place to openly speak your mind, and it represents “social” media at its core.

When I’m on Twitter, more often than not, I find myself having fun. It serves as a primary source of news for me these days, it’s where I meet new people most frequently, and whenever I have a question, that is where I go first.

Also, as a platform, Twitter has never really been about “playing the algorithm,” which is interesting to me. Whenever I’m there promoting something I’m doing, I find myself talking about it candidly, rather than stressing over every little detail.

Because of all this, it’s no wonder to me that as a business, Twitter has pulled a complete 180, especially knowing how pissed off the world is at Facebook right now:

And so, that is what brings me here today.

If you’re starting a new business like I am (I’m bootstrapping a marketplace platform for creators, in case you hadn’t heard), building an active presence and community on Twitter sooner rather than later can really help.

When you think waiting makes sense, think again.

Photo by Nathan Dumlao

When I first set out to create my new business, I did what ever other self-respecting entrepreneur with a firm background in digital marketing would do: I secured all of my new brand’s social handles.

I parked them, knowing that as I built this business myself, from the ground up, that there would come a time when they would need to be put to use. A time in the not-so-distant future, sure, but in the future nonetheless.

I sense you get a feel for where this is going…

Then, it hit me. Why not now? What am I waiting for, exactly?

So, I just went ahead and started it.

But before I get too far into that, let me back things up a bit and layer in a little necessary context:

JRNY (my new company) is a marketplace platform for content creators and personal brands. We connect people with photo & video professionals in their area, or wherever they happen to be traveling.

As I said, the company I’m creating is a marketplace platform. That means I have a real need to build out the supply (service providers) before I can go about procuring any demand (customers).

Since deciding on NYC and LA as our first two test markets, I’ve been performing daily outreach in those areas, connecting with whoever I can.

Long story short, I’m grinding — starting out small, but trying to move fast. As such, I didn’t really see a need to jump into Twitter before, at least until our platform had officially launched.

But that was before I started seeing tweets like this:

That’s when the marketing strategy around JRNY completely changed.

Listening is a tactical skill very few brands deploy.

Photo by Steven Spassov

Coming from the digital marketing and ad agency world, I can honestly tell you that today, in 2018, brands on social media still care way more about talking than they do listening.

They want to create killer content and campaigns. They want the creative ads they produce to be what really moves the needle. They want people to feel compelled to buy their products because of the sheer essence of their brand.

I get it. Better than most people, I bet…

But here’s the thing: There are potential customers out there, not just waiting to be contacted by them, but openly talking about how the products and services these brands provide are exactly what they need.

All you have to do is listen.

It’s a lot less sexy as far as a social strategy goes, but it is effective.

And when it comes to finding people who are in need of specific help, resources, and information, searching Twitter is about as easy as it gets.

Here’s the inspiration you might just be looking for.

Photo by Bence ▲ Boros

Upon viewing the aforementioned tweet, suddenly, the Twitter strategy around the business I was building became crystal clear:

Provide value to photo/video professionals and the people most in need of their services by playing the matchmaker.

What I did was really simple, and yet, it’s already working:

1.Set up the brand on Tweetdeck. Tweetdeck makes it really easy for you to casually monitor hundreds of tweets while doing other things.

2.Add in multiple search columns. For JRNY, I have columns that search “need a videographer,” “need a photographer,” & “need a video editor.”

3.Retweet, follow, or otherwise engage. I’ve begun retweeting everyone looking for photo/video help and following anyone looking for work.

We’re only three days into this strategy so far and, like I said, it works:

All we’re doing is simply retweeting folks on Twitter whose tweets are publicly accessible and super easy to find, and yet, we’re fast becoming the destination for photo & video pros to find work & make these types of connections.

That is the ultimate goal for our brand, and while the platform we’re actively building will serve to facilitate that exchange on a much greater scale, we’re already proving that we can do it in the simplest way possible… on Twitter.

Now, due to this new strategy, more people will follow us, more will routinely visit our page, and once we do launch our platform in a specific area, we’ll already have people there who are excited, in the know, and ready to join.

Because sometimes, the answer is right in front of you. You just need to listen…

And then play the role of the matchmaker…

Because building relationships and giving value before going in for the ask is truly where all the magic happens in business.

Here are a few next steps for you to consider.

Photo by Redd Angelo

If you’re building a brand new business in 2018, I obviously would recommend that you don’t sleep on a site like Twitter.

Regardless of what you’re building, though, or which platform you care most about, the first question you need to ask yourself is this: How can I provide our audience the most value here in the simplest, most basic way?

Oftentimes, the actual answer won’t require a pitch deck, or hiring a new designer, or any of those things we typically do before launching a social presence on a new or existing platform.

Then, once you ask yourself that question, start thinking about what you could do to execute on that vision. Today.

There are plenty of tools out there just waiting at your disposal. We could’ve easily taken the above Twitter strategy and turned it into an email-driven tool or an Airtable database, for starters.

The idea is to get out there early, start building a community or social presence around your brand, and then activate them once the time is right.

Because while making money might be your business’s end goal, helping people along the way never hurt anybody, either.

This story is published in The Startup, Medium’s largest entrepreneurship publication followed by 337,320+ people.

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Steve Campbell

Written by

Future bestselling author. Operator of The Ascent. Out to help you share your voice, document your journey, and discover the path to a better you.

The Startup

Medium's largest active publication, followed by +581K people. Follow to join our community.

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