Yesterday, I was reading a thought-provoking piece by C.G. Lynch on ‘How and Why to Launch a Business Presence on Twitter’. The article highlights the companies that have enjoyed successful use of twitter. It instigates several questions in your mind. Which businesses are using twitter? What are they doing on twitter? Has twitter been successful for them? Have they added to twitter’s success?
If you dig a little deeper, I’m sure you will come across many industry verticals where businesses have been using twitter for a variety of purposes. The glitch is the news is coming in from the ‘outside world’ at the moment.
Out here in India, we are still compiling/questioning the names of businesses & business representatives who are using twitter. Not that we do not have successful case studies of organizations using twitter, but the bottom-line is that such instances are very few. Majority of the CEOs and the companies you will come across on twitter are:
- Very small businesses – One man shows or small start-ups
- The key purpose is networking/pr opportunities
- The real mantra of ‘feedback’ and ‘messaging’ takes a back seat
My due respect to small time entrepreneurs as I am not trying to criticize them for what they’re trying to achieve out of this tool.
My question – Are there any Indians brands/businesses/organizations engaging in real conversation apart from shameless self promotion on twitter?
Some quotes from the CIO story which describes the use of twitter by Jetblue:
You also might set up a personal Twitter account to see what makes this community tick. That’s how Morgan Johnston, Jetblue’s manager of corporate communications, built his own Twitter presence (@MHJohnston) before setting up Jetblue’s popular Twitter page (@jetblue), which has more than 155,000 followers to date.
The Indian story
If you search for the twitter accounts for major airlines in India you would either get a page that does not exist message or the twitter account is being already used by someone.
Take the example of ‘jetairways’. While the account is there it is protected and there aren’t any updates !
Basic expectations from airline companies using twitter:
- Provide real-time flight status info.
- Updates on weather conditions
- Provide urgent updates like gate changes etc.
- Most importantly gather feedback from customers about their flight clearance
- Inform passengers about promotional fares.
- On occasions, push the promotional material/press-releases 🙂
What more do you expect from an airline that uses twitter to talk to its customers? CIO’s story explains how Jetblue uses twitter for instance.
“It was probably no small coincidence that we didn’t gain a lot in the way of a following at first because of that,” Johnston says. “Twitter users said, ‘we want a conversation with you, not faceless marketing.'”
For example, Jetblue followers want to receive some promotions, but they also want to know about flight delays, cancellations, general information and what to expect from their in-flight experience, he says.
Just imagine how easy it will be for you as a traveler if you get all this information via twitter. Agreed it isn’t any rocket science but like always, we Indians have been very slow to react.
Will we ever stop over-analyzing things ?