#HastingsBizChat: Facebook vs. Twitter

Online marketing is becoming ever more popular than traditional means for business, as technology continues to change the ways in which we can drive sales, attract new customers and engage with our loyal ones.  Knowing this, we [the Economic Development staff] thought it would be interesting to find out from businesses directly which online marketing tools they find to be most effective – in particular, Facebook and Twitter. 

HastingsBizChat promotional image for April

For this month’s #HastingsBizChat topic, we pinned Facebook up against Twitter for a showdown.  And the final results of the match were as follows:

Q1: Which platform (Facebook or Twitter) do you prefer for business marketing, and why?

  • Twitter and Facebook cater to two different audiences and require different content strategies.
  • We use both Twitter and Facebook.  Facebook = a very personal collection of fans, so the content has to fit this audience.
  • I read an article that said Twitter was like an elevator pitch and Facebook was for deeper engagement.
  • Being able to follow users gives Twitter an edge in building a following.
  • We find many of our followers as a result of us engaging with their content first.

Q2: Which platform reaches your target market best?

  • Facebook reaches our locals and visitors alike. On Twitter, we find lots of operator engagement and visitors looking for quick information.
  • We find that a lot of businesses are using Twitter for customer service.
  • Twitter is also a great platform to reach influencers.
  • A simple tag can result in a retweet, which can result in exposure! Make your content visible to the right people by tagging.
  • Twitter forces you to be succinct and creative with your messaging.

Q3: Do you have a strategy for using Twitter and/or Facebook as part of your overall marketing?

  • 100% we have a strategy for sharing content and key messaging for each social media platform.  Planning ahead is crucial!
  • Not every business needs both. Key is who is their audience and what content does that audience crave, and where.

Q4: Which do you do more of, post “live” or do you schedule your posts?

  • Scheduling is the foundation, but you need to follow up and engage in real time to seem less robotic.
  • We use a combination of both by scheduling key messaging content in advance and adding complementary posts in “real time”.

Q5: Do you use either platform (Facebook or Twitter) for direct sales?

  • Lists are a great way to see the content you want, without filtering through your busy home feed.
  • Yes, but in moderation.  Good content – less about you, more about your users’ needs.
  • Our messaging acts a conduit between the audience and our tourism operators/offerings.  We track metrics and ROI with bit.ly links.
  • We have used both platforms through targeted ads.  So far Facebook wins in driving web traffic.

Q6: Is there a business/organization that you think uses Twitter / Facebook effectively for marketing?

And now, the final results from the match can be summarized as…

Join us on Wednesday, May 25th for the next #HastingsBizChat on Twitter and Facebook from noon to 1pm EST.  Learn more how to participate in the chats here.