Interviewer’s Note: Today we’re talking to James Swan. I met himduring my explorations of the Twitterverse, trying to answer the question: How do today’s businesses use social media? Read on to learn more about Mr. Swan’s answers and thoughts.
Good morning, James; welcome to the Pluggio Blog! How do you describe your business?
I run a lifestyle and media business focused on delivering a branded lifestyle message to consumers across the country.
How did you get started?
After 20+years in the design business I decided I was ready for a new challenge. Shifting our emphasis from custom work and becoming a leading voice to a broader market has been my focus for the past 12 months. My newly published book “101 Things I Hate About Your House” is the keystone in the branding of my new venture.
Why do you do what you do?
I believe in the power of good design to enhance and elevate daily life. I want to entertain, educate and empower individuals to live more beautiful lives.
What roles does Twitter play in your business?
Twitter has become our key relationship builder. We’ve used it to initiate and nurture an ever-growing base.
What impact or change have you seen due to Twitter/social marketing? Are there any of your accomplishments with social marketing that you are particularly proud of?
Twitter and Facebook have both delivered large numbers of followers in a relatively short period of time. With approximately 4500 followers on each medium (gathered since May 2010) we view this expanding circle of followers to be of great importance as we continue to grow our brand.
4,500 twitter followers is pretty substantial in under a year. How did you build your following?
I started with using my Facebook page as a resource for new content. Then I began experimenting on Twitter, mainly looking for timely subjects that my target market might find interesting. Over time I’ve tested and re-tested always looking for new or unique content my readers will find useful. For me, it’s always about the best content possible.
What strategies did you use for social marketing?
Two daily Facebook posts (original content) supported by 7 (plus or minus) Twitter posts in a pre-set rotation of content. Based on reTweets and replies I either continued with a content idea on twitter or abandoned it in favor of a more popular alternative.
Very interesting- so you kept what work to use later and discarded what didn’t. What worked for you?
Twitter is no place for milk-toast opinions. Strong opinions strongly presented seems to generate responses. Twitter also seems to favor honest questions and requests for other’s ideas or opinions. I’ve found asking good questions generates good answers.
What didn’t work for you?
Rehashing the same information everyone else is posting has generated very little for us. The more unexpected our position can be the better.
Good rule of thumb. What does Twitter do for you that nothing else can do?
Twitter gives me immediate access to important information sources. If I ask a good question I will always learn from my followers.
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