An amazing week and a Twitter rush

May 31, 2011 - 2 comments. Posted by in Prat Perch journey.

Last week was fantastic. A definite high for us as a new start-up.

So as promised, and in the spirit of openness, this post shares a little of why it was good and shows how Twitter can really work in giving small companies great exposure.

Power of Twitter

Last week I wrote an article on the technical subject of tyre slip angle.

The reason behind it was Martin Brundle and David Coulthard, the Formula 1 commentators on the BBC and both former F1 drivers, were not so sure what slip angle was, during their commentary for the Spanish GP qualifying.

Therefore, I wrote the article to help people understand a little more about this critical factor in racing performance; a factor that can be quite complex to think about or visualise.

I tweeted the story. People seemed to like the article, they chose to “re-tweeted” it and in a flash my daily website visitors shot up massively (more on this below).

Twitter is fairly new to me; well at least in terms of using it myself.

My career to date has been mainly technical or in developing business-to-business relationships, and quite honestly, I question its value in that situation.

In terms of Prat Perch however I thought differently. Prat Perch is developing consumer products for an enthusiasts market (motor racing); I felt Twitter could be perfect so decided to get involved (via Tweetdeck).

I first published my article on the Tuesday night. It was read a few times and I tweeted about it. I tweeted to a few people I follow and one person, Peter Windsor, with several 000′ followers, kindly Re-tweeted (RT) it.

From that moment on it took off – well in my scale terms at least.

The graphic below shows the Prat Perch Google stats for last week:

Clearly 500 visits in 24 hours is simply noise for some large online websites. For us here at Prat Perch it was like a wave of interest we’d never have hoped to have generate simply through advertising alone.

Furthermore, all the visitors we had were clearly relevant as they took time to read the article. I know this because this is shown, at least in part, by the amazingly low bounce rate % statistic. Note: less that 20% is normally impossible and Prat Perch has less than 1% bounce rate!

Comparing to Google Adwords

We do have a small Google Adwords campaign going at the moment. Each click is costing us just under £0.50p for each visitor. Therefore, if we’d “bought” this much traffic from Google, it would have cost us a conservative £250.00 (500 x £0.50p).

Clearly I owe Peter Windsor a beer (or two …!)

So not only financially are we better off but the Google visitors could potentially have been less relevant visitors; depending on the ad content and what the visitors were actually looking for.

Another thing, in comparison to Google, is that we’d also have no way of knowing who the visitors were; at least following your Twitter RT’s you can contact (and thank) the people interested in your content immediately if you like.

In summary

So by using Twitter, there has been a direct financial benefit (in kind), a fast response and a closer connection to the motor racing community – i.e. potential Prat Perch customers (or evangelists?)

On the flip side, you can see that our visitors have now returned back to our normal visitor rate – about 20 a day.

Twitter is an “in the moment” communication tool. This means your tweets can easily get lost in the noise of others. So clearly there is something to do with timing of tweets that we got just right last week, totally by accident …

Never the less, our twitter follower numbers have doubled and several more people signed up for the newsletter. Although the spike was exciting, the long term interest it has also given is hopefully valuable to all concerned in future; its no use having a good product if no-one knows about it!

Therefore, on balance, I am definitely now a Twitter fan.

Reflective moment

From a business perspective, I hope this story helps show you why I would recommend anyone operating in a consumer focused field to get tweeting; especially if you have something to say on a subject.

Last week was an incredible exciting experience.

Maybe it helps that I am as much an enthusiast of Motorsports as I am a practicianer of it. Either way, by giving something to the community, they have instantly given something back to me.

This week I have been able to connect personally with people and start to build hopefully lasting relationships with them.

It is great (and scary!) to see what people are saying about you live.

Twitter gives you a chance to join peoples conversations, especially if you feel you can add value or clarify thoughts people are having, and right there and then too!

As a final aside

Clearly at Prat Perch we are ‘data people’ so we are following our metrics.

Luckily this is something that my friend Colin Hayhurst has highlight from this recent report on entrepreneurs that says:

“Companies that track metrics effectively, and thus learn, achieved 3 to 4 times better growth rates of users”, than those that don’t.

Hopefully we are on the right track then Colin! …

In any sense, actually watching the visitor stats grow so fast in real-time, was really quite a buzz! … I’d recommend it!

Thanks to all you readers and RT’ers; there will be more articles coming soon.

I hope people found this useful. Please let me know by commenting, likeing or tweeting this article.


Pace Insights is a start-up based in Warwick, UK. We are building a next-generation platform for easier high performance data analysis and management, specifically for the motorsports market. Register your interest at www.paceinsights.com and read more articles like this at blog.paceinsights.com

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