Last year call-tracking company Mongoose Metrics launched a Twitter outreach campaign to raise awareness about the value of its services and technology. In the process, it positioned itself ahead of competitors that were less active in social media in educating prospective customers about the little-understood world of call tracking.
“We started looking at Twitter in March 2010,” said Kathleen M. Colan, the company's director-marketing and content. “We didn't know what to expect, but we said, "Let's take a look at this and see what all the buzz is about.' ”
Colan kicked off Mongoose's Twitter effort with educational content focusing on the benefits of the company's call-tracking technology, which analyze how the volume and quality of inbound phone calls can be attributed to performance-based advertising campaigns, such as paid search.
“As one of the first in our industry on Twitter, we did not set any real expectations or goals to start,” Colan said. “However, as our Twitter presence grew and our competitors found their way to the medium, we quickly defined objectives for our Twitter campaign and then committed the necessary resources to achieve them.”
Specific goals included increasing site traffic, conversions, number of followers, retweets, mentions and favorites, as well as an assessment of rising social influence as measured by Klout Inc.
“While some social media gurus debate the use of these metrics, we found that incremental improvement of each of these [key performance indicators] provided an accurate barometer of our success,” Colan said.
Colan uses HootSuite to monitor up to 10 categories of information, including the phrase “call tracking,” to gain insight into what's being said about Mongoose. And now that the competition is catching on to social, she said, the monitoring process shines a light on what competitors are talking about and who they are engaging with.
Colan estimated that she spends about three hours each day monitoring Twitter, interacting with tweeters and participating in conversations using hashtags related to what the company does, such as #measure, #SEO, #CRO (conversion rate optimization) #usguys and #PPC.
And since the value of call tracking itself needs some explaining, Mongoose's Twitter campaign relies heavily on offering white papers and research. Tweets invite followers to link to such titles as “Five things you can do with call tracking to help your conversion rate.”
The viral nature of social quickly became obvious to Mongoose. The influential website Mobile Marketing Watch noticed the company's mobile marketing white paper, retweeted it and asked permission to offer it on its own site.
“We've been getting leads from this since March,” Colan said.
Another tactic Mongoose has used is appending UTM tags to tweeted offers, a process that identifies which links traffic is coming from. “Say we put out that "Five things you can do' white paper,” Colan said. “By connecting this information to our back-end marketing automation software and CRM system, we're able to quantify the results of specific tweets.”
The program has paid off well for Mongoose after just a year. The company now consistently responds to customer inquiries and comments, and currently has almost 12,000 followers.
The power of retweeting has been very instructive. Through the end of December, Mongoose saw its own tweets retweeted 1,248 times, for a total retweet reach of 2.9 million eyeballs.
Last month, Mongoose won first place in BtoB's annual Social Media Marketing Awards for the best marketing use of Twitter.
“Twitter is the public face of our brand,” Colan said. “There already is a conversion there going on about your business and, if you're not taking part in it, you're really missing out.