When social media users follow a small or medium-sized business (SMB) on Twitter, there’s a good chance they’re especially disposed to that business, and their likelihood of purchasing a product from that SMB is particularly high, according to a survey conducted by Market Probe International, and commissioned by Twitter, in May 2013. More than seven out of 10 polled SMB followers in the US and UK said they became more disposed to purchasing from an SMB after following the company on Twitter.
So there’s plenty of incentive to give these Twitter followers the content they’re looking for in their feed to keep them engaged with the SMB. The leading reason respondents gave for following an SMB on Twitter was to receive updates on future products, at 73%. These products have a good chance of then being researched and perhaps purchased by loyal Twitter patrons.
A general interest in showing support for the SMB was the second most popular reason for following, and interacting with the SMB was close behind. Both of these responses point to the investment that Twitter SMB followers have in the company.
As for getting Twitter followers to perform the other function that social serves for brands—getting the word out to friends and family—respondents said they were most likely to have retweeted SMB content if they enjoyed it, at 70%. And nearly two-thirds said they mentioned an SMB on Twitter if they had a positive experience, while more than half replied to a tweet to share a positive experience.
Twitter users seem to be fairly invested in the SMBs they follow on the network, so it’s up to these businesses to effectively leverage this enthusiasm, encouraging fans to keep purchasing and spreading the word to others.
A Constant Contact survey from December 2012 found that 13% of US small businesses posted to Twitter daily, while 18% posted weekly. At a total of just 31% posting on Twitter at least once a week, there’s still plenty of opportunity to further engage SMB followers on the network.
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