In the early days of the Internet, there was an outcry that it would remove personal connection from our daily interactions. However, the current landscape (built on information sharing, discussions, and social media-based collaboration) is not creating a disconnect, but rather allowing each of us to connect in a new way. In addition, these connections are one on one. A healthcare sale is a one on one relationship-building exercise and Twitter is a great tool for building these relationships.
I know, I know, stop before you even say it! Most non-Twitter users are about to start screaming. Just give me two more minutes to convince you. Think of Twitter as the largest trade show you have ever attended (by the way, trade shows are a dying format, but that is for another post). Back to my analogy – Twitter is a trade show and there are booths all over the convention center, each booth talking about a different topic. You walk the aisle and stop by booths that interest you. You start by listening to the conversations and when you find the one that interests you, you join in the conversation. Over time, the conversation turns into a relationship.
Now, in real life Twitter, start by following topics (Twitter Feeds) that interest you. Get involved. You will be amazed by the number of clients and potential clients that have their own feeds. Learn what challenges your clients are facing, what news gets them excited, and what information they find important. Start to connect and build the relationship; but you must get involved first.
One last thing, responding to a tweet in the form of a sales pitch is the fastest way to turn someone off and is generally viewed by Twitter users as inappropriate. This is not a sales forum. This is an environment in which to exchange information. You should not need to pitch your product. If you are genuine in your responses and contribute good information, people will connect with you. They will be interested enough to check your profile, where you can tell them a little about yourself and also list your website. Which brings up another discussion, your website better be well organized and informative, because this is where they will come to find you.
Gone are the days when you can rely on only your website to drive business. Today’s rapidly changing social media landscape demands new forms of communication and Twitter, as a platform, is becoming the easiest way to connect with new people and start new relationships.