Team tweeting with AMA
The AMA team started using Twitter last year to help promote their events management company. I spoke to Sarah Potter, Project Manager at AMA, to find out more about what they´ve been up to.
To set the scene, Sarah explained that everyone was keen to start using social media – Twitter in particular – to get the AMA name out to its target market and develop a strong online brand. But no one in the team was quite sure where to start. As Sarah explained, “Social media is the buzz word at the moment, but we knew very little about it or how we could make it work for us.”
After doing some online research, AMA found Inventive Workshops, run by Ben Kinnaird and Helen Coldicott. One of AMA´s directors had also seen a presentation by Ben and Helen, so were able to endorse what they offered. Ben and Helen came into AMA for a day and gave a Twitter workshop. Sarah says of the day, “It was fun and interactive. We were able to ask lots of questions about what to tweet, when to tweet, how to get to our target market and so on. At the end of the day we had a step by step plan to get started.”
A few months on, Sarah is proud to report that nearly every member of the team tweets on a regular basis. She´s also very clear about what Twitter has given to AMA.
First, a way to solve problems – after experiencing problems at an event run by another company, one of AMA´s directors tweeted her dissatisfaction. The problem was very quickly resolved.
Second, a way to get help. Sarah needed to write an article on bribery in relation to the hospitality industry, but needed to get her legal facts straight. She tweeted for help and was contacted by a lawyer who helped her put the article together.
Thirdly, a way to raise AMA´s profile. Before a recent event, AMA tweeted that there would be “event survival packs” available on the AMA stand. On the day of the event, there were people queuing up to get their pack before they´d even been unpacked!
Despite the success of the Twitter experiment, Sarah says they still worry about a few things. “We sometimes wonder where the line between `fun´ tweets and `corporate´ tweets should be. We think it´s important to get a good mix, but it´s a fine balance. But at the end of the day, you just need to think about what you like to read on Twitter and use that as your benchmark.”
As for the future, Sarah is clear that Twitter is an important part of their marketing strategy. “Direct mail and other traditional forms of marketing are expensive and take time to organise. Twitter is quick and it´s free.” The next step is to be able to say that every member of the team tweets, not nearly every member. Incentives such as a £25 voucher for the first person to get 50 real, new followers each month are certainly helping in this aim.
Asked if she has any advice for anyone worried about how to start using Twitter, Sarah says, “Do some research or go on a course like we did. That way you can answer your concerns about what to tweet and when to tweet as well as get practical advice on how to make it work for you.”
AMA is an International Events Management Company based in Alcester, UK. The company organises events in the UK and overseas and has a reputation for working alongside its clients to create successful, brand endorsing and profitable events.