As Twitter continues to move toward monetization with the recent launch of @earlybird and promoted tweets, marketers might be advised that one of the best ways to court consumers on the platform could be conversing with them.

As Twitter continues to move toward monetization with the recent launch of @earlybird and promoted tweets, marketers might be advised that one of the best ways to court consumers on the platform could be conversing with them – and it doesn’t cost anything to talk. A recently released report from 360i, entitled Twitter and the Consumer Market Dynamic, indicates that everyday conversations are the main activity on the platform.

The report shows that 43 percent of all consumer tweets are conversational, going against traditional beliefs that the site is primarily used for status updates, which accounted for less than a quarter (24 percent) of tweets. Additionally, 12 percent of tweets mention brands, suggesting consumers like to chatter about products and services on the platform.

Social networks, entertainment, technology and telecom were the top categories for brand mentions, and retail was not far behind. Marketers in these industries may particularly want to invest in engaging Twitter users, but all businesses on the platform could benefit from boosting their Twitter conversations. While nearly half of consumers converse with @replies to other users, just 12 percent of all marketer tweets represent active dialogue.

By participating in the conversations about their brands through conversational tweets, marketers have the ability to shape the perception of their services on the platform and they may develop some strong brand advocates among engaged users. Plus, this activity could help promote their brands as thought leaders to less active followers reading along.

Earlier this month, Twitter’s search volume hit 800 million queries per day and the 360i report reveals that 92 percent of all tweets are unprotected, so businesses’ @replies to consumers will come up in Twitter brand-related queries.  

Katherine Griwert is Brafton's Marketing Director. She's practiced content marketing, SEO and social marketing for over five years, and her enthusiasm for new media has even deeper roots. Katherine holds a degree in American Studies from Boston College, and her writing is featured in a number of web publications.