We’re all big fans of using Twitter here in the Retail Week office, even the technophobes like me and George
We’re all big fans of using Twitter here in the Retail Week office, even the technophobes like me and George, but the case of the Labour candidate who’s been expelled after posting some really offensive stuff is a reminder to all of us who don’t really know if we’re tweeting personally or professionally of the need to be a bit careful.
Retailers are getting in on the act too but a lot of their attempts are really tiresome, to the point that I’ve had to unfollow some of them. If I see another retailer who posts a tweet which just says “Happy Friday” or “What a lovely day” I might just scream.
To be fair, Twitter is full of people uttering such banalities - in some ways that’s what it’s about - but that really wastes its value as a marketing tool to retailers.
Among my favourite retail tweeters are the Asda press team - flagging interesting stuff up for journalists, giving their critical view on what their rivals are up to, and generally just having a conversation on Twitter with people who are interested in what they do. Pretty much everyone at Asos seems to use it to and that helps them communicate on one level with customers, but also with press and people who are interested in what they do, or their use of technology, for example.
The most interesting customer-facing application I’ve seen is the Sainsbury’s cookalong, where Sainsbury’s tells you what ingredients to buy earlier in the day, then at 6 they kick off with step by step cooking instructions for that day’s recipe. I’ve no idea how many people do it, but it seems to me a good way to make the whole cooking with Jamie Oliver thing come alive using Twitter.
I’m sure we’re going to see a lot more imaginative applications, as to my mind this is the social network which is likely to stick around. In the meantime, though, follow all the retail news as it breaks by following @retailweek and if you want our more personal thoughts, @timdanaher and @georgemacd too.
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