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Print 13 comment(s) - last by kkwst2.. on Dec 10 at 4:16 PM

Dell has 100 employees Tweeting specials

Social networking is very popular among online users, and many businesses are using these same social networks to interact with customers and potential employees. With the poor global economy, Dell is looking for any and all methods that can be used to increase the sales of its computers.

In June of 2009, Dell announced that it had racked up $3 million in sales that its internal tracking software directly attributed to its Twitter use. Dell sends out special deals over its Twitter channels in many different countries. That may not sound like a lot of money to a company that rakes in billions and is the third largest computer shipper in the world, but it is significant and growing robustly.

Bloomberg reports that Dell has now racked up $6.5 million in sales that are directly related to Twitter. In six months, Dell has more than doubled its sales via Twitter. Dell's Manish Mehta, VP of Dell's online unit, said that the number of Twitter followers for Dell's Tweets numbers 1.5 million. That number represents a growth of 23% in the past three months.

Dell has over 100 workers who send out the tweets over 35 different channels. The big increase in sales attributed to Twitter isn’t in the U.S. alone, Brazilian shoppers alone racked up $800,000 in sales via Twitter.

Mehta said, "It’s a very vibrant channel for us and it’s growing aggressively. It’s not just our reach and growth that has progressed; it’s that it’s happening globally."

Dell is currently using Twitter across 12 different countries counting the U.S. and Brazil as well as Mexico, China, and Japan among others. Twitter is currently the third most popular social networking site around. Dell also uses Facebook, MySpace, and YouTube as marketing avenues. Twitter recently closed a new round of funding that valued the company at $1 billion.



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By Taft12 on 12/9/2009 11:59:30 AM , Rating: 4
I'm not sure how they can know a sale was made "through Twitter". A certain sale may be announced through a tweet, but that can be posted on fatwallet, emailed to my grandma or circulated in many ways.

$6.5M in sales divided among 100+ employees is a very terrible ROI, but bear in mind most of those employees are based in low-cost centres (primarily India).




By tonyXcom on 12/9/2009 12:16:51 PM , Rating: 5
But if those sales codes originated on twitter who really cares how people find out. It started on twitter and that is all that really matters.


By omnicronx on 12/9/2009 1:26:15 PM , Rating: 2
You can't just make the assumption that people 'found out' about Dell via twitter. Its far more likely that it is just a new source for getting discount codes that previously existed. Its very likely that Dell is taking sales away from other methods of advertisements, whether that be newspaper, online add, discount code site etc etc..

I'm not saying Twitter isnt helping, but you cannot merely say that all 6 million in sales would not have occured if not for twitter. The number is overinflated, plain and simple, and thats why it 'really matters' where/how/why people found out.


By tonyXcom on 12/9/2009 2:30:34 PM , Rating: 3
It's a campaign. It doesn't matter if people found out about the codes on Fatwallet or any other viral medium. The campaign was launched on Twitter and any sales made with those coupon codes can and should be directly attributed to Twitter because that is where they originated.

I don't think Dell is saying that they would have made that 6m in sales if it weren't for Twitter. I think they are saying that they launched a fairly successful advertising campaign on Twitter that resulted in 6m in sales.

Dell used Twitter for distribution. It doesn't matter how people found out. It's no different than putting up a billboard in Times Square with coupon codes. You don't have to live in Manhattan to benefit because of the power of word of mouth.

Would you also say that you can't attribute the 6m in sales to that billboard because not everyone that bought something with those codes saw the billboard. That's just plain silly. The power of advertising is that the ad goes beyond the scope of the people who actually read or see it.


By kkwst2 on 12/10/2009 4:16:14 PM , Rating: 2
I think people here understand the principle of viral marketing. The problem is showing that the sales were attributable to the Twitter feeds. Just giving a sales figure says nothing as to whether the sales are directly related to viral marketing and specifically Twitter.

I bought a Dell for my brother-in-law using coupon codes from a deal site that may or may not have originated from Twitter. I have never used Twitter and have no interest in doing so. The code would likely have ended up on that deal site whether it was communicated through e-mail, Facebook, catalog, or word of mouth. You can say it originated from Twitter, but that doesn't mean that Twitter increased Dell's revenue from my sale. I would have likely made the same purchase regardless of whether Twitter even existed.


By Lonyo on 12/9/2009 12:23:53 PM , Rating: 2
You're assuming that all these employees do is post specials to twitter.
I would guess that's not the case.

Also it depends on whether they track the special link, or the referring URL.
If they know it's a referral from Twitter.com they can attribute it to Twitter, if they just have a code that they post on Twitter and it gets reposted elsewhere, then it's not such a good indicator.


By retepallen on 12/9/2009 12:57:48 PM , Rating: 2
I would expect those staff members to dedicate themselves to more than just tweet specials.

Twitter Salesman Vacancies: 100

Job Description: Must spend 8 hours a day tweeting dell specials and discounts

*nb, i think i managed to keep the job description under 140 characters...


By Shadrack2 on 12/10/2009 1:44:23 PM , Rating: 2
I think this guy could put 100 Twitter sales people out of work in about 20 minutes.


twitter
By ChoreBoy on 12/9/2009 1:33:35 PM , Rating: 3
i don't know about you guys, but for some odd reason, i hate twitter.




Does It Matter?
By mindless1 on 12/9/2009 10:44:27 PM , Rating: 2
If someone was going to buy a Dell, does it really matter if they clicked through from Twitter or somewhere else?

The real question is how do you use that crystal ball you would need to see what the sales figures would've been if Twitter hadn't existed.

Certainly many who bought something would have if they had not seen the tweets, after all they bought because they perceived a need or want that does not generally appear magically because of a tweet.




but...
By roostitup on 12/10/2009 3:02:03 AM , Rating: 2
...lost 50% of their sales in all other advertising campaigns. Dell, from a current customer and a future lost customer, you suck!




Overall Sales
By jacktrombones on 12/10/2009 11:03:20 AM , Rating: 2
As Dell has been increasing its Twitter sales, its overall sales have declined. Although competitors like HP, Acer, Lenovo, and Apple are all showing a rise in their sales. Just because one area of sales has risen, does not mean Dell should abandon all other types of marketing.




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