Twitter-as-a-Business-Credibility-Indicator by ancih


									Twitter as a Business Credibility Indicator
Author: Anthony Adams
One of the biggest hurdles any small business faces is proving itself as a legitimate competitor to larger, more established brands and
products with much deeper advertising pockets. From my personal experience, this fact of business was compounded by the nature of
my product, a hangover cure drink mix, which already came under scrutiny almost by default when pitching to potential buyers. I knew
upon starting my business that my product desperately needed credibility if anyone was going to put down their hard earned money for it,
especially online. Most competing products (most online products in general, actually) use basic text for customer testimonials and the
first name of an allegedly satisfied customer. Obviously, the flaw here is that these quotes are unverifiable. How do I know if Sally in Ohio
really said she loved a certain product? Is it equally as possible the quote was simply made up by someone in the marketing
department? It is almost offensive to think that in 2009, customer testimonials online are just as stagnant as they were a decade ago.
Text. Just text. Enter Twitter as a credibility indicator, which I highly recommend everyone reading this incorporate to their sales sites.

Obviously your product has to work and have some kind of following for this to be possible. So if you are peddling crap, you might as well
stop reading now. If, on the other hand, you have a small but loyal and growing fan base, they will seek you out on Twitter. Y brand
does have a Twitter account, right? Once you develop a rapport with customers on Twitter, either by sending out free samples, following
up with paying customers via Twitter after a purchase, etc. you will start receiving Tweets raving about your product. Real people. Word
of mouth is the best way to generate buzz for your business and Twitter is word of mouth on steroids. I noticed this incredibly valuable,
free content my customers were generating and began adding it to my Testimonials page by taking screenshots. Gone were the stale,
boring quotes that could have been written by anyone, replaced by verifiable, credible customer quotes. I then took it a step further and
actually linked those Tweet screenshots to their respective customer Twitter pages. That way, if a potential customer was still not sold
after seeing a Tweet on our testimonial page, they could actually engage an already satisfied customer for an honest opinion of The
Hangover Cure. Twitter testimonials also often sound so much more organic than static text, more real. Trust me, the competition isn't
doing it, yet. But it will catch on.

This understanding of how to use Twitter creatively helped accelerate my brand faster than anything else that comes to mind in terms of
free promotion of your business. If you are putting out great content, or a great product or service, you will receive love letters from your
fans on Twitter. The value of this user-generated content is off the charts and it's free. Remember that word of mouth crushes traditional
advertising every time. Get it on your website as soon as humanly possible. Even if this means giving away free samples, the value of an
authentic tweet from a real person is game changing and a great equalizer as larger competitors will be slow to adapt and take
advantage of it due to all the red tape associated with making any changes to their website. I believe using Twitter as a testimonial
soapbox for your customers is one of the best and most innovative ways to use the platform.
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About the Author
Anthony Adams is the author of Online Business Greatness, an eBook dealing with online business success and the creator of The
Hangover Cure, an all natural hangover prevention supplement.

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