Noel D'souza
Dec 13, 2021

It’s all about creating more talking power: Rishabh Sharma's advice for brands on Twitter

The head of Twitter Next in India speaks with Campaign India about #BestOfTweets 2021, the metrics used to track brand success, and how brands are adopting a humanising tone

It’s all about creating more talking power: Rishabh Sharma's advice for brands on Twitter

Twitter has announced the #BestOfTweets 2021 to acknowledge brand marketers and celebrate compelling campaigns of the year. This year’s list was presented on 11 December. 


Campaign India caught up with Rishabh Sharma, head, Twitter Next, India, to learn how brands are crafting effective campaigns by partaking in culturally relevant conversations, the metrics used for #BestOfTweets, and strategies for Twitter-centric campaigns. 


Edited excerpts:


How have brands cashed in through conversations on Twitter with major sports events and the revived festive season shopping this year? 


Twitter is a way to connect with the world by participating in conversations that everyone is already partaking in. Be it events like cricket, Olympics or festive season shopping.


Cricket-Twitter is a massive conversation. We saw the momentum kept rising for all the stages of the tournament. There were about 75 million conversations on Twitter throughout the World Cup tournament. 


This year, MPL Sports bagged the title of 'Best Brand to Connect' by leveraging the Twitter cricket conversations through its #BillionCheersJersey campaign for the T20 world cup. 


Beyond cricket, the Olympics brought about so much pride to the country, which witnessed 82 billion impressions around the event. 


If we look at cultural moments and themes like Diwali and shopping, brands leveraged the Twitter space by launching campaigns that spoke to multiple audiences.


The first brand that comes to mind is Amazon India, the winner of #BestOfTweets ‘Best Brand Connection to a Cultural Occasion’ this year for the campaign #DeliverTheLove. 


Amazon’s Diwali campaign resonated with the entire Twitterverse showcasing how not just our families but even strangers went above and beyond to help everyone by delivering the love. 


These human-centric conversations have driven 13 million conversations in 2021 and communities have given brands a perfect canvas to launch campaigns. We aim to see this behaviour continue post-pandemic.  


In regards to brand conversations on Twitter, what is the distinctive difference between 2021 and 2020? 


Brand conversations have become significant, we can see the change coming from them. This change is not just in terms of volume but also the diversity of the conversation, with many audiences viewpoints who speak multiple languages. 


Niche conversations are also appearing be it fitness or work from home. 


When it comes to tracking the success of brand campaigns what metrics does Twitter Next look at?


When it comes to measurement we go beyond plain media numbers. 


It is important to see and measure campaigns by unpacking the layers inside, like the core insight, the relevance of the message, audience reaction, the effectiveness of the media planning, and lastly, if was there a conversational impact on the brand. 


Does the Twitter Next team collaborate with brands to help them communicate better to their target audiences?


Twitter Next is our internal dedicated brand strategy team. The purpose and mission are to collaborate with brands, creative and media agencies, to help craft meaningful campaigns on Twitter. 


The foundational approach to our partnership is being core to our audience, and having deep knowledge about our Twitter audience.


We are living at a time where there are so many tweets to scroll within seconds, so it’s all about creating more talking power, and that is where our business team and external partners focus lies. 


Which brand categories has Twitter Next provided creative marketing solutions for and which of them dominated the Twitterverse in 2021?


Starting with the automotive sector, we work with brands like MG Motors, Mahindra, Kia, and they have been consistently launching products on Twitter. This momentum was seen when on-ground events were missing. The automotive sector trusted Twitter’s influential audience, to drive immediate awareness for their products. 


This years ‘Best product launch’ on Twitter went to MG Motor and Mahindra. These two brands used Twitter’s products and showed the audiences a consistent presence by driving incremental impact on their launches. 


In the Tech OEM category, we have brands like Samsung, Oppo, One Plus, and Vivo. These brands have been leveraging Twitter’s live solutions and take-over products. Oppo India is on this year's #BestOfTweets because of their strategy to engage with their audience by inviting their CMO to speak at a live Twitter event. 


Media and Entertainment is one category that consistently launches campaigns with us every week or month. Be it Netflix, Amazon Prime Video or Disney+ Hotstar, they have leaned into Twitter’s audience. 


Then there are BFSI brands like State Bank of India creating financial awareness. They do it by being present in the moment ensuring that they are picking up what matters to their brand as their pillars of conversations and crafting strategies that are progressive on video first content marketing. 


More than a brand category dominating the Twitter space public conversations are taking the lead.  


Through brand conversations on Twitter, what click-through rates have brands leveraged? 


Measuring the success and impact of a campaign on Twitter is a critical component. We do this through Twitter's brand surveys where brands can evaluate the impact of their campaigns through key brand metrics. 


Furthermore, there is campaign reporting that highlights views, impressions and click-throughs to understand in totality how the campaigns have performed. 


Beyond the metrics, we focus on the conversational impact on Twitter. Focusing on the growth of the share of the voice and how the sentiment for that conversation is evolving. 


A recent improvement in Twitter’s mobile application tools has delivered a 24% average increase in installs in impressions. Click-through rates have also increased with Twitter’s quick ID’s having delivered 10x site visits. 


How does a brand curate an effective marketing strategy for a Twitter-centric campaign?


There is a war for distinction. Audiences have so much to choose from which is why we need to create a timeline stopping power and creatives that can engage. 


Brands need to see public service through a larger lens. It is about building brands with an influential and receptive audience over a public conversation on Twitter. If a brand gets the audience to participate in the brand’s journey, they are already creating advocates. 


Broadcasting brand values also have a prominent space in Twitter's marketing strategy. 


The foundational thinking across all these strategies is establishing a tone. Brands need to embrace humanity. While there is a race to be distinct, brands need to own their space by the products they make and the values they exhibit. 


Another strategy is aligning with moments. Brands need to start their year by knowing their guard rails and planning for moments and occasions that could happen. It is about keeping the agility in both the creative and social strategies.

Campaign India

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