Bet on engaging with Twitter not selling

Screen-shot-2011-01-10-at-10.01.42The best way to engage with consumers is actually to be non-corporate and not to sell your services. An oxymoron? No just engage by being engaging not selling. A great example of this is Betfair Poker.

Their entire Twitter feed is non-corporate and as a result has a massive following who regularly reTweet their posts. An example of Betfair’s off the wall humour is there everyday to enjoy and worth following just to make you smile.

Current posts include:

“I’ll always have fond memories of HMV. I had my first ever kiss there. I’d gone in looking for Avengers on blu-ray, but found love betfairinstead.”

And “Is there anyone worse than the couples on Location, Location, Location? ‘Look at us; we’ve found true love AND we can afford to buy a house’

Although I did like the reTweet from Arena Flowers (clearly the same PR people operate both sites….) which said “Never say “I love you” too early in a relationship. Always wait until the person comes into focus.”

And another corker from Arena “On a first date, always show an interest in your partner: What’s her job? Why is she making a loud hooting sound? Why does she have a beak?”

betfair-500x173Nothing about betting, nothing about flowers just engaging, humorous content that will be shared and the brand will benefit as a result. Genius, no, just simple rules of engagement. No one’s going to re-Tweet a factual company message from Betfair Poker or about flowers but they might a humorous, nothing to do with the brand post. Brave but it works.

The brand benefits from a halo effect of association with the dry humour of the Tweets and they use this to softy sell their services but BetfairRGBAsiaso softly that you could miss it. Ultimately there is no reason for anyone to follow Betfair’s Twitter feeds or a florists so this gives people reasons and makes them smile which in turn reflects positively on the brand.

When it comes to searching for a flower brand or a poker brand who would a follower or someone who has been engaged or seen the post going to pick?

The value of Twitter is to communicate in 140 characters effectively to build relationship with consumers. If all brands do is communicate serious corporate stuff they won’t get any followers but if they utilise the medium in the right context and brighten people’s day the positive association with the brand will come through in helping them achieve their commercial objectives too. Win-win.