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Match Your Expertise To Questions on Twitter

by Miles Austin

Match Your Expertise To Questions on Twitter

WhoWhatWhenWhereWhy chalkboard

You are an expert in something. Now you can match your expertise with people asking for help on Twitter. A new web tool called InboxQ creates an automated way for you to view all of those questions, comments and requests for help on Twitter, on the topic of your expertise and guide those questions directly to you to answer.

Most LinkedIn sales training teaches you to search LinkedIn’s Question area and answer questions that you have expertise in. The thinking is that by answering the questions of others in a thoughtful way, you are establishing your expertise and building your reputation as a go-to source for that topic. It is also a great way to learn what prospects are thinking about on a particular topic or product. An innovative, free tool is now available that allows you to do the same thing with Twitter in an easy, automated way.

The tool is InboxQ.

I’ve written previously about the power of  Twitter as a listening tool. The challenge up until now was that it was cumbersome to search through and then respond to the questions you were interested in answering. InboxQ automates this activity in their web tool by either a plug-in to your browser (currently available for Chrome and Firefox) or as a plug-in to Seesmic or HootSuite social web tools. They also have an InboxQ for iPhone app available in the Apple Store. I have found that the Chrome extension has been the most handy for my work style.

Here is how it works:

  • Create a campaign to target questions you want to answer
  • Answer questions directly from your own Twitter account
  • Build your reputation with quality answers
  • Earn more followers and new customers

Once you have installed this free web tool, InboxQ delivers a realtime stream of questions related to your business, products, industry or general interests from Twitter directly to your browser.

An example of InboxQ in use by a technology sales person:

You sell PC Hardware, and have an offering in the newest hot category of portable devices called Ultrabooks. You have been extensively trained, have strong market presence and informative collateral available. You create a campaign by entering the word “Ultrabook” into the Campaigns tab.

Here is what then shows up in the Questions tab:

InboxQ screenshot of Ultrabook Campaign

Note that you are shown a series of real-time Tweets with the term “Ultrabook” .

Each tweet, when selected, activates the four additional buttons of Profile, Answer, Todo, and Share, allowing you to respectively view the Twitter profile of the person asking the question, answer the question immediately, add the question to get to later in your Todo list or Share the tweet with someone that you believe might provide more depth or expertise for that specific question. Possibly share a question with a pre-sales engineer, or a product manager. These results above are real. Looks like at least one person is thinking of buying an Ultrabook, and several other opportunities to engage and nurture the opportunity.

The key to strong results with this tool is in the keyword selection within your campaigns. You are able to have multiple campaigns, each with multiple keywords in each. If you really want to maximize the results, invest some time using a web tool such as the Google Keyword Tool to use the keywords that people are searching for the most.

InboxQ is free, easy and fast to install, and it works instantly if you have good keywords to enter into your first campaign. Give it a try and share your results in comments below.

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