Can You Run A Business On Twitter? [Chi Case Study]

A Twitter Case study for Chi Kitchen and Bar, the oriental restaurant.

If Twitter is not Greek for you, then indeed you can run a business on Twitter. In fact, Twitter is the best medium to connect and converse with just about anybody. And that’s what Chi Kitchen and Bar set about to do. The challenge facing Chi was twofold – Being a new service and being in an already crowded market. So they got down together with Brandlogist, a brand-marketing consultancy, who with the help of Twitter embarked upon an ambitious journey to create Chi awareness or let’s say spreading Chi (happiness). And here’s exactly how Twitter was used at each possibility. You can follow Chi on Twitter here.

Creating potential new customers

Twitter is a wonderful tool that enables eavesdropping or just listening to an individual’s thoughts. When a lady on a long drive home, tweeted about her craving for Chinese food, Chi invited her to drop by their restaurant. Two days later, the lady enquired Chi about home delivery in her city. You can see a screenshot of this Twitter conversation here:

Potential new customers

But you need to be mindful of the fact that Twitter is also a private space, before barging in with your marketing! The key thing in this conversation is - ‘Hope you reached safely’, following which the brand invited her to try their Chinese. If one takes away this part of the conversation, the Chi tweet  would resemble a typical marketing gimmick. Incidentally, the tweet has been retweeted to her followers too.

Here, the brand not only built a rapport with a Chinese food lover, it also created new business and potentially new customers who happened to see this tweet.

Targeting potential customers in the same location

If you just listen on to Twitter, you would see many twitteraties sharing  about their current location or just setting up to meet friends at a particular place. It is a basic human tendency since technology allows for it. When someone tweeted about visiting Select Citywalk, the same location as Chi, the brand invited him over for dinner. And how could one possibly ignore an invitation to dinner! Given below is the screenshot for this conversation:

Location based targeting

Here again, Chi has added the human touch to the conversation without which their tweet would have been ignored and they would have lost out on an opportunity.

Targeting the competitors customers

Going by the heading, this might sound slightly unethical, but if done tastefully, there is no harm in it. Here, Shreya tweets about her desire for good Oriental food as she has developed a recent aversion to it.  Chi barges in offering Shreya a promise of good Oriental cuisine at their restaurant. Given below is the screenshot of this conversation:

Competitor based marketing

Chi has not only advertised itself but with the touch of wit and humor, it has created a ‘fun’ brand image for itself.

Building a relationship with old customers

Sometimes, we eat at a restaurant and forget about it. But we don’t forget the taste, do we? Good or bad, we remember it all! So when a certain customer who had eaten a couple of times at Chi, tweeted about it, Chi began a conversation with him asking him about his favorites. The brand then took the conversation on to a stronger platform and offered him a free lunch! Given below is the conversation for the same:

Getting the old customers back

The offer has been made to the customer through DM, and you can very well see the customer’s delight!

Taking feedback from customers

When you are in the service industry, you ought to take feedback, be it good or bad, but the sad part is that people are not open to bad feedback. Actually, bad feedback if handled sensitively, can work wonders. When Angkita had tweeted about disliking a particular dish, she had had at Chi, the brand listened to her feedback and ensured her that they will look into it. Given below is a screenshot of the same:

Taking feedback

If you follow the Chi Twitter handle, you can see Angkita as the happy and regular customer at Chi.

Getting online influencers to talk about you

If you are in the food business and you can get the popular tweeting chef, famously known as Madhu ‘MadMan’ Menon (@madmanweb), who commands a Twitter clout of nearly 7000 fans, to tweet about you, then you are doing something right on Twitter. In the below conversation, Madhu had tweeted the lyrics of ‘Kiss Me’ to which Chi added the next lines. This pleased Madhu who promised to visit the restaurant soon and indirectly spread the good word to his strong follower base. Given below is the Twitter conversation between Madhu and Chi:

Talking to right people

Supposing if the brand had barged in selling their dishes to him, and this when he is in the mood to sing, would the conversation end up like this?

By the very nature of Twitter, we can see how it allows for free conversations and instant connections. At the same time, it is also a private space for each and every individual. A brand can neither be pushy nor can it interfere into private conversations or just somebody tweeting her thoughts. If you observe the conversations closely, you will see a common pattern of human behavior - People are open to making friends with someone like their own as well as instantly liking a cheerful, friendly and helpful person. A brand that can be such on Twitter usually wins the case!

Did you like the strategy adopted by Chi on Twitter? Do let us know in the comments.