Last week, we offered up a little refresher regarding how to research Twitter and StockTwits to judge their impact on your shareholder communications. This review may have seemed basic for many of you.
OK…so, you followed the quick cashtag search steps in “Part One” and you found that there is some meaningful banter about your company. The next step is to monitor it. BTW: we do sell wicked awesome social media monitoring tools, but for now… for IR… let’s skip that path. Your PR group should already have them. (Email me if they don’t – I can get your company the “BHS” discount.)
Go to www.TweetDeck.com and open up an account. It’s a free tool from Twitter however… you need a Twittter account.
If you do not have a Twitter account you could make one – even if you need to make up a faux name. Just never Tweet from it and no one will bother you. This is your listening account. You can also use the Twitter account your marketing or PR group currently uses. Just don’t tweet out from it. The TweetDeck interface is laid out in a manner where it would VERY VERY VERY difficult to send a Tweet by accident. (Unlike our cell phones, you cannot butt dial or have Twitter accidents: celebrities and Senators take note.)
The beauty of TweetDeck is you can set up columns that will follow a particular, filtered name or topic. Obviously you would set up a column with your cashtag ($TICK) as well as separate columns with just your ticker (TICK) and your company’s full name. I would also suggest you set up columns with a couple of your peers’ and competitors’ cashtags. This listening step alone is a great start. Just check it once a day.
Click this image to enlarge it to actual size.
After a couple weeks… you’ll become a TweetDeck dilettante and you’ll have identified some people whom you want to follow – perhaps there is an analyst that tweets meaningful info on your sector. Rather than “following” them via the traditional Twitter style, you can assign her/him their own TweetDeck column. The beauty of the column is you remain anonymous.
You can also give hashtags a column. I follow discussions about investor relations (#irchat), corporate governance (#corpgov) and #XBRL.
Tactically, you are only reading tweets at this point. Will you see a lot of junk and noise? ABSOLUTELY… but you cannot decide if Twitter is right for your shareholder communications without knowing the landscape. At the very least, when your Board asks “what are we doing regarding IR and social media?” you can tell them “we’re monitoring any and all chatter about us and our sector but we’re not comfortable about sending out anything yet…
…but we do have the smartest investor relations website toolset.”
Have a great day.