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Why You Should Make Twitter Spaces Part of Your Business Strategy

5, 2021

8 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Audio content is all the rage these days.From podcasting to Clubhouse, many businesses are making it part of their content strategy. However, they aren’t the only options for those looking to become part of the audio space.What is Twitter Spaces?Twitter Spaces is a place for users to host rooms where speakers can hold audio conversations. Listeners are able to tune in and can also request to speak, allowing them to step onto the virtual stage to share their thoughts and ask questions. And because there’s no video aspect to Twitter Spaces, you don’t have to worry about being camera-ready.Beta testing for this feature began in November 2020. During this testing phase, all users had access to listen and speak within a Space, however only a small group was given access to hosting capabilities. It wasn’t until May 2021 that hosting Spaces became an option for all Twitter users that had at least 600 followers. Since then, many business owners are giving Spaces a go and figuring out how it fits into their overall content strategy.Since Spaces has become available, Twitter has announced they are taking it up a notch by also offering a way to monetize the audio conversations you host on the platform. Ticketed Spaces are currently in the beta testing phase, allowing users the ability to charge anywhere from $1 to $999 for a ticket to attend a Space.Why is Twitter Spaces beneficial for entrepreneurs?As an entrepreneur, it’s important to put yourself out there online. These days, there are many different ways to do that. You can start a blog, a podcast, or a YouTube channel. You can also build your presence on various social media platforms. It’s all about knowing where your audience is and playing to your strengths. So, if you’re someone who loves to talk and you know your audience is active on Twitter, Spaces is worth considering.Here are a few reasons why:You stand a better chance at getting noticed. Our tweets have such a short lifespan, but when you’re live on Spaces, you’ll show up at the very top of a user’s mobile app. They’ll be more likely to see you and join the conversation this way.You’ll have a built-in audience. With Clubhouse, users are really starting from scratch with building their audience on the platform. If you’re already on Twitter, then you have people who are there and ready to join your conversations.Nothing is needed to get started. Having fancy equipment isn’t necessary. You don’t even need to put on your business attire. Instead, you simply need to open the Twitter app, start a brand new Space, and begin delivering valuable content.It has accessibility in mind. While many platforms are stepping up to the plate in terms of accessibility, some are still lagging behind. Twitter Spaces has made their audio conversations accessible to those who are hearing impaired by offering live captions. This means you won’t be excluding members of your audience when you host a Space.And with Ticketed Spaces on the way, many entrepreneurs will want to jump on board with Spaces now so they can establish their presence and prepare for monetization when it becomes more widely available. Everyone loves having multiple revenue streams, right?Now, the question is, how can you best use Twitter Spaces as a way to grow your business? After all, implementing features like this into your content strategy won’t do much if you don’t have a strong foundation in place, outlining why and how you’re using it.Here are a few tips for making Twitter Spaces work for you:1. Know what you want to achieve with spacesYour time is precious, which is why you want to ensure you’re reaping the rewards when you put time and energy into something. When it comes to Twitter Spaces, it’s smart to set goals for yourself so you know what you’re working toward. This way, you’ll be able to see if hosting Spaces regularly is working for you or not.For example, you may want to use Twitter Spaces to grow your audience on the platform. In this case, you’ll want to monitor your follower count before and after your Spaces to see if you notice any growth. If you want Spaces to be a tool for promoting your offerings, you’ll need to see if people are taking action and purchasing after the conversation ends. Or maybe you just want to use it to establish yourself as a thought leader in your field. In which case, you’ll watch for engagement and take note of what people are saying about you and your content.The point is, you want to use Spaces as a tool to drive specific results. If that doesn’t seem to be happening, then you’ll know that something needs to change about your strategy.2. Host conversations that will appeal to your target audienceIn order to entice people to tune into your Spaces (and keep them listening to the very end), you need to hold their attention. That means it’s up to you to figure out what they want and deliver it so they see the value in joining the Spaces you host.Here are a few ideas you can try out:Teach people how to do something. What’s something that your target audience would love to learn how to do that you can teach via an audio conversation? You could offer simple tips and tricks so they can leave your Space and immediately put your advice into action.Discuss the topics in your industry. This is a sure-fire way to grab attention and get a lively conversation going with others in your field. Share your thoughts and opinions, then open up the floor for listeners to join in as well.Host value-packed Q&A sessions. This could be an opportunity to answer burning questions your audience has for you or you could invite an expert onto the virtual stage for an interview, podcast style. Either way, focus on the questions your audience wants answers to.If you’re not sure what kind of format will work best, try out a few different options and see what interests people the most. Sometimes it’s just a matter of testing to see what works.Related: 10 Ways to Learn About Your Target Audience3. Go live regularly on Twitter SpacesAs an entrepreneur, consistency is key to your success. You have to show up regularly if you want to boost your return on investment (ROI). If you aren’t showing up often, you run the risk of your audience forgetting about you entirely. And that’s the last thing you want!To stay top of mind, it would be smart to create a Twitter Spaces show that you host at a set time. It gives people something to look forward to and the more you put yourself out there, the better chance you have at connecting with new people.Consider creating a show that you host every week, every other week, or monthly. Go with what works for your schedule. Just make sure you’re showing up and giving it your all if you want to see results.Related: Live Streaming Video: What It Is, Why It Matters and How It’ll Quickly Grow Your Brand4. Be willing to experiment with new thingsYou never know what will work for you until you give it a try. That’s why it’s worth experimenting with how you use Spaces. Try a few of the ideas listed above, but be open to testing out other ideas as well. If you want, you can even ask your audience what they’d like to see from you, which could generate a few new ideas as well. After all, there’s no better source to learn from!Ultimately, you have to be willing to test and tweak your strategy. If something is working well for you, keep it up. If something isn’t working, figure out why and see if there are any tweaks you can make to improve the idea. If not, scrap it and move onto something else. It’s not time wasted if you learn something valuable about what your audience enjoys.Related: How to Create a Social Media Marketing Strategy From Scratch5. Use Twitter Spaces as a tool to better understand your audienceDone right, Twitter Spaces can be used as a tool to help you connect with your target audience and develop a deeper relationship with them. They’ll get to know you better, and in turn you’ll get to know them better. From there, you can take what you’ve learned about their interests and pain points and use it to create future content within your brand.And as we all know, providing valuable content is key if you want to boost your followers, engagement, and conversions. Plus, it’ll establish you as an expert in your field over time. Before you know it, your brand just might become a household name.Related: 10 Laws of Social Media Marketing

The Holidays Are Approaching. Here’s How Retailers Can Prepare.

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has upended supply chains around the globe, forcing companies to rethink the way they manage production, inventories, and virtually every other aspect of operations. And with the holiday season just around the corner, entrepreneurs and leaders at retail companies of all sizes will need to maximize visibility of personnel, assets, raw materials, and cash flow dependencies to ensure they’re able to meet an uptick in demand—which will happen sooner than we think.In recent years, seasonal shopping has started earlier and earlier, with around 40% of consumers beginning to cross items off their holiday lists before Halloween. As the pandemic persists, retailers should be stocking seasonal inventories well in advance so that customers can shop safely and avoid the stresses associated with long lines and shipping delays.

With summer coming to an end, now is the time to be planning for a holiday season that could very well be busier than ever before. In order to ensure a winter season (relatively) free of customer complaints and overwhelmed support staff, consider taking the following four steps today:
1. Plan your marketing and promotion strategy.
When it comes to marketing, digital is likely going to be your most important channel for the holiday shopping season. But don’t create your messaging in a vacuum. Marketing across all media should be consistent and reflective of your target customer’s typical buyer journey. Jeff Bradbury, senior marketing director in enterprise for Hughes Network Systems, advocates for an omnichannel approach that integrates all of the digital and in-store technologies you might be using to engage prospective buyers, with an emphasis on driving in-store traffic.

“Customers want cross-channel shopping experiences that are seamless across online, offline, and partner interactions—which rely on the essential integration of associated network systems among all three environments,” says Bradbury. “Successful omnichannel system collaboration enables retailers to use their online capabilities to encourage people to visit stores, where the overall customer experience continues and customer loyalty deepens based on the more immersive and positive in-store brand experience.”

This year, proper scheduling will be especially critical to effective marketing and promotion. With that in mind, you might want to create all outreach campaigns—including email and social media communications—well before you plan to share them with target customers. Use major dates and events (think Thanksgiving, Small Business Saturday, etc.) to anchor your content strategy, and plan your promotions for these dates around your existing inventory first. If you currently have a surplus of certain products, consider marketing them as “gifts” that customers can purchase now but ship to recipients later, or as add-ons that can be bundled with holiday purchases at a discount.

2. Develop your approach for hiring seasonal employees.
It’s going to take time to onboard any additional customer service staff, warehouse workers, delivery drivers, and other personnel you might need when holiday shopping kicks into high gear. No matter what kind of store you’re running, you’ll have to consider legal parameters and tax implications associated with hiring contractors or part-time employees, which means you might have to set aside time to get professional advice as well. As the labor market bounces back from its pandemic slump, job seekers of all kinds are already in high demand. Don’t wait until the last minute to start hiring.

There are also major differences to be aware of between contractors and full-time seasonal employees, so carefully assess your needs when deciding how you’ll bolster your workforce. If you simply require one-off support for a particular initiative or someone available to help in case of an unexpected surge in buying activity, contractors could be the way to go. And if you’re hoping to bring on new team members once the holiday season is over, the coming months could be a great time to put prospective full-time hires to the test. Seasonal work will allow you to assess how these individuals mesh with the rest of your team. Remember, if they can perform under the pressures that come with the holidays, they might be excellent additions to your company in the long term.
3. Use AI to optimize decisions around inventory flow.
This year’s holiday season will likely differ from previous years in a number of key ways, making it tougher to project demand. Forecasting will be even harder if you’re launching new products or targeting new customer segments, yet it will also be vital to setting accurate sales targets, implementing effective pricing, properly managing your inventory, and ensuring your overall success. Luckily, there are new AI-based technologies available to retailers that can help ensure they get it right.
Ali Hasan R., co-founder and CEO of ThroughPut Inc., which makes AI-powered supply chain tools, says software can take the guesswork out of forecasting: “Historic data can’t tell you everything you need to know about future demand fluctuations. Instead, accurate forecasts will come from AI-driven demand sensing algorithms that can learn from other items and stores,” he says. “Use these tools to exact detailed information from parallel marketing events, and you’ll have a wealth of information about how a new product or service will react to a variation in price, demand trends, and more.”
There is an abundance of data you can use to calibrate your operations during the holiday season. With the help of AI, you can draw useful, actionable insights from that data much quicker than you’d be able to with traditional business intelligence techniques. Use that to your advantage.
4. Create a strategy for addressing COVID-19 safety concerns.
The pandemic has resulted in a massive shift in consumer preferences for contactless payments and curbside pickups. In fact, more than half of consumers will do business with a retailer that offers contactless payment over a competitor that doesn’t. As such, investing in high-quality, no-touch payment solutions will give you a significant advantage over retail companies that haven’t yet made that transition.
Contactless payment systems do more than just protect customers. They also allow you to provide a faster, more seamless checkout experience, which can ultimately lead to more sales. Because no-touch payments are still relatively new, you might consider installing in-store signage displaying easy-to-understand directions on how to take advantage of contactless options. You could even hire support staff to assist customers during checkout.
Again, remember that you’ll want to make decisions about hiring and in-store communications before the holiday shopping season begins in earnest. Assess your needs now, and don’t wait to start executing your plan to meet demand. The busy shopping season will be here before you know it.