This post explores Twitter automated Direct Messages, which some Twitter users insist on building into their Twitter strategy.
We’ve explored Twitter automated Direct Messages before in Twitter Marketing: 4 Bad Habits to Avoid.
96% of Twitter Automated Direct Messages Fail
And many do more harm than good.
Only 4% of responses claimed that they’d either had success with Twitter automation or liked receiving them. The majority of Direct Messages are completely ignored and more than one in three users immediately unfollow the culprit and/or considering the messages as spam. This causes damage to a relationship before it has even begun.
This was a Poll on Twitter automated Direct Messages. The results were correct at the time of posting this blog.
57% of Twitter Users Ignore Twitter Automated Direct Messages
If your strategy is to engage other Twitter users, to gain trust and reputation for you and your business (as it should be), do Twitter automated Direct Messages achieve that goal?
In our Poll, 57% of users said that they just ignored automated Direct Messages completely. We also found that some users were OK, but were annoyed by repeated automated Direct Messages from the same accounts.
17% of Twitter Users Immediately Unfollow After Receiving a Twitter Automated Direct Message
If your goal is to gain more followers (the number of Twitter followers shouldn’t be your primary goal), then losing one out of every six followers through poor judgement or technique can’t be a good thing, right?
“I immediately unfollow. [Lazy, automated messages are] a sign of things to come”, says Dustin Stout.
21% of Twitter Users Consider Automated Twitter Direct Messages as Spam
One in five users detest receiving Twitter automated Direct Messages. We included this as “dirty, filthy spam” in our Poll, just for fun, but also to illustrate the point – poorly executed Twitter automation can seriously damage your brand and reputation.
This 21% is offended by your automated Direct Message. They’ll never engage with you unless it’s a complaint. They’ll never recommend you and they will never buy anything. It’s more likely that they’ll complain about you to others too – is that what you want for your brand?
Just 2% of Twitter Users Said That They Liked Twitter Direct Messages
I suspect this is a troll, rather than a serious claim, but just 2% of users actually enjoying your Direct Messages can’t be achieving whatever your Twitter marketing goals are.
2% of Twitter Users Claimed Success With Automated DMs
Only one Twitter user in fifty claimed to have enjoyed any success with Twitter automated Direct Messages. Maybe automated Direct Messages are a waste of time then?
Can Twitter Automated Direct Messages Be Effective?
Perhaps the main issue here is that abusers of this technique simply jump in too quickly. If you’ve read the awesome Permission Marketing by Seth Godin, you’ll understand that you can’t get married on your first date.
Asking a user you literally just met on Twitter to buy something from your eCommerce store or even like your Facebook page is too big a step for many – you have not invested in the relationship yet, so you can’t withdraw. Using Seth’s metaphor, you can’t ask every girl in a bar to marry you – unless you’re Brad Pitt, most will consider you an annoying pest.
How to Craft An Effective Twitter Automated Direct Message
Marketer and Entrepreneur, @ChrisKubbernus gets between 10-15% engagement rate from his automated DM strategy.
“I’ve developed a cool tactic with my automated Direct Messages that does get good results. You see, people hate automated DMs because they’re not authentic, cheesy and most Twitter automated Direct Messages are either too generic or too pushy.
I avoid those things. First, I come out and say it – “This is an automated Direct Message”. By doing this, people see I’m being honest. I tell them a bit about myself and thank them for following me. I don’t ask them to download something, or follow me on Facebook. I’m not trying to sell people anything.
Too many automated Direct Messages are trying to sell you something from the get go. This is horrible. It’s like meeting someone on the street, saying hello and then asking them to buy your sofa on Craigslist.
Though I do tell them I have a cool Instagram profile. The one thing I do ask, is for them to reply to my automated Direct Message so we can have a real conversation.
This Automated Twitter Direct Message strategy has worked wonders. I estimate that about 10-15% of people reply. Honestly, these replies have been some of the best social interactions I’ve had on Twitter. I get to find out what people are doing and what they are interested in. And isn’t that what social media is really about – creating relationships?
The other thing I do, which I think makes a difference, is use humour. I have some funny lines in my Twitter automated Direct Message which make me stand-out from the crowd.
I think automated Direct Messages are like anything in this world – in the wrong hands they are dangerous – but if done right they can be effective tools for building actual relationships and helping people.”
Should You Automate Twitter Direct Messages?
The overwhelming response from our simple survey is no. However, perhaps that’s because most automated Twitter Direct Messaging strategies aren’t creative or compelling enough – they’re introduced as a quick win and can often appear lazy.
That’s no way to start a relationship.