Twitter: If brands and organizations don't take the lead on social, people will

Brands urged to overcome their fears and learn to collaborate with agencies and platforms to boost their presence.

Twitter users are no longer waiting for established institutions to take the lead on social media – meaning brands and organizations have to learn to operate in real time.

Speaking at Spikes in Singapore, Twitter’s regional brand strategy chief Steven Kalifowitz said there were some great examples of "agencies and brands coming together to use our platform to connect in the here and now."

Crucially, he said this work was not only raising brand awareness, but was also driving tangible business outcomes and best-in-class business service.

He praised Dove for its Oscars social media campaign that aimed to combat negative tweets about beauty and body image on awards night.

The brand created a Twitter tool that identified cruel keywords, with Dove’s Twitter account then tweeting non-automated, positive responses and advice.

The #SpeakBeautiful campaign was based on a study that found four out of every five negative tweets posted on Twitter about beauty and body image are from women putting themselves down.

He  also warned that people were no longer content to wait for established organizations to take the lead on social media, highlighting recent campaigns set up by individuals to help refugees fleeing Syria.

"People are no longer willing to wait to be told what to do," he said. "This is all about the power of now."

"This is why we need to connect with people in real time."

He urged brands to overcome their fears and learn to collaborate with agencies and platforms to boost their presence.

"We have the tools to help target your audience," he said, adding this wasn’t about randomly tweeting, but having a coherent plan in place to implement in real time, when required.

Early in the day Kalifowitz gave four tips for brands to follow on Twitter when speaking to Campaign Asia.

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