In April of 2008, Steve Keating, Manager of Selling Skills at the Toro Company, heard me speak about using social media to build one’s sales. Already involved with Twitter, Steve had at the time a few hundred followers. After hearing the presentation, he decided to make it a key strategy in building both his personal brand and enhancing the value proposition of Toro.
Today, Steve enjoys a following of over 65,000 people! His twitter ID is @LeadToday. In building his list of followers, Steve employed 3 simple tactics:
1. Provide valuable ideas on how to be an effective leader
2. Re-tweet valuable ideas from others thereby expanding his network and leveraging other people’s wise thoughts
3. Show appreciation by thanking those who have re-tweeted his ideas and thoughts
This was a process that Steve has nurtured on a consistent and disciplined basis.
So how did Steve and Toro benefit from getting 65,000 followers? For one, it strengthened the relationships with dealers and distributors by providing ideas on how to grow their businesses. This resulted in Toro enhancing its overall value proposition and keeping its competitors at bay.
In addition, the brand of Toro was also enhanced. Imagine having 65,000 people interested in leadership reading Steve’s daily tweets on a consistent basis. How much would it cost Toro to get this kind of exposure on a daily basis using other media outlets? With Twitter the total cost can be rounded to the grand sum total of zero dollars. Add to this the flexibility of customizing messages to events happening real time. This by itself makes Toro and Steve more relevant to the market place.
Finally, the connections Steve has made around the world with other leadership experts exposes him to additional ideas and concepts he can easily import into his organization thereby making him more valuable to Toro’s success and enhancing his own personal brand.
This is the power of Twitter. Notice how Steve does not sell his products in his tweets. He simply builds value which in turn creates buzz that generates business.
Congratulations Steve. And thank you for recommending Lead, Sell or Get Out of the Way to your list.