Guest Contributor: Dorothy Friedman, Vice President, Marketing, Fidessa
People at work are often shocked to learn that I am on Twitter. They ask, “Why would you do that?” Or say, “Wow, that’s a huge waste of time”. Many of them do not realize how valuable Twitter can be from a business perspective, if used properly.
For me, Twitter is a fun and easy way to stay updated on trends and information in my field (I’m a marketer in the financial technology space). It can be a very effective tool for research and competitive analysis, a great way to network…and it even got me an invitation to write this guest blog!
One of the key trends in my industry right now is increasing regulation. There is a ton of information about Dodd-Frank and other proposed regulations floating around on Twitter. Often, I see the news there before I see it anywhere else; for example, Twitter is where I see the Options Industry Council put out daily options volume statistics.
I can also search and monitor any tweets that may mention my company by setting up a column on TweetDeck, a Twitter dashboard. This can be particularly valuable in many ways, like CRM. For instance, if a client was trying to get in contact with my firm, I would be able to answer them quickly. I can monitor my competitors in the same way and see how they are using Twitter. Are they communicating with influencers and customers? Or just putting out press releases?
From a networking standpoint, I’m reminded of a recent tweet from @johnpneedham. He was commenting on being at @AllanSchoenberg’s Roast put on by @StockTwits. He said: “Observation: Last night I was in a crowded bar, and I knew about 50% of the people. 100% of the people I knew, I met on Twitter! It works.”.
I have also met a ton of people in areas that are important to me (others that work in the financial markets, industry reporters and analysts, other marketers etc.) on Twitter. By sharing personal details like my love for dogs, the Mets, NY Giants and kayaking, I have made connections on a more individual level that actually makes my job easier. The information I share on Twitter helps me find commonalities that can be used to strengthen my professional relationships. For example, I needed to reach out to an industry analyst that I didn’t know, Stephen Bruel from TowerGroup (@StephenB_TG). When we spoke for the first time, the ice was immediately broken when he mentioned the latest Giants game. He was a fan and knew I was based on my tweets.
The bottom line for me is that through social media, Twitter specifically, I’ve made great professional contacts and some really good friends. Check it out, I think you can too.