Despite the lowering costs and accessibility of email marketing, many businesses are now looking at Twitter as an economical substitute, according to Deborah Collier, chief strategist at e-business consultancy, Echo E-Business.
From restaurant bookings to product launches, Twitter has now become a de facto tool, not only for relationship building, but also sales, said Collier. However, she added that it is not just the small companies that are cashing in to the potential of Twitter. According to June reports from Dell Computers, Dell generated $3 million in sales from Twitter.
Collier explained: “Email marketing offers a channel to directly target subscribers, however the return on investment, particularly for smaller businesses is still fairly low in comparison to other media channels. The biggest email marketing value for many businesses, particularly in the B2B markets, is in relationship and brand building over a period of time, supporting the overall sales process. Now we have Twitter to do that, and its free.”
Collier advocates Twitter as an essential element of any internet marketing strategy. “Its important to remember, however, that it’s not what tool you use, but also why, how and when to use it. With any strategy it’s important to ensure that you are in the right place at the right time, and that your message if communicated effectively.”