The capacity to direct message someone, or DM for short, is present on almost every social media platform. Communicating marketing messages privately may strike you as a more genuine way to go, but if the message is generic and very ‘ad like’ it will strike the receiver as the complete opposite.
If you run a Twitter account for any type of business, you may feel that direct messages are very annoying. Communicating with a prospect, client, or fellow business via social media should be an important part of your digital marketing plan, and you don’t want the results to be ‘counter-productive’.
As a marketer, you know that the process of successful marketing depends on a positive public perception of your company. A generic and annoying direct message can put a surprisingly heavy blow to this positive perception.
Here are tips from us here at freshMerge on how to create a productive DM:
1. Study your target before making contact. Social listening is very important in the process of creating a successful DM because a direct message is more likely to be positively received if the sender took the time to learn something about its target in order to make a genuine connection with them.
For example, say your target is from Australia and you visited Australia back in your twenties. Lead with that connection at the beginning of your message. This not only provides a common bridge between you and your target but it makes them more likely to thoughtfully listen to you.
2. Provide value! The direct messages that we at freshMerge read and respond to provided value to either us individually, or to our own business. If you record a podcast weekly, offer your connection the permission to provide your podcast to their audience. If you are willing to feature their business/work on your site, hint toward the potential for that opportunity. Many people will be very interested in a way to gain additional exposure for whatever it is that they are marketing.
3. Make sure the conversation is a ‘two-way street’. This coincides with the basic idea that everyone likes to talk about themselves. Lead with a question on what the person is working on, what they have been particularly interested in lately, or what they hope to specifically get out of their time (and money) spent marketing on Twitter, for example. Typically, this not only makes your receiver more willing to create a connection with you, but it provides insight as to whether you are a good match business wise.
Think of people who are actively consuming your social media content as trained professionals in the art of spotting inauthenticity. Today, the people who are buying products can spot nonexclusive advertising from miles away. This means your marketing plan should revolve around creating strong and genuine relationships with your audience prior to attempting to sell to this audience.
The public is getting smarter so we as marketers, need to get smarter too. Never put up a front or underestimate the ability for your audience to see through a generic DM. If done correctly, direct messaging can be a fabulous way of creating contact with a potential client.