The material handling conversation on social media is still in development, as evidenced by the absence of lift trucks when scrolling through trending Twitter topics. When Yale Materials Handling Corporation, one of the oldest lift truck manufacturers in the world, wanted to amplify its voice and help build the material handling conversation on Twitter, we knew strategy and creativity were key.

Industry familiarity enables a targeted campaign.

To develop our social media strategy, we started with identifying Yale’s audiences, then targeting those individuals, companies, partners, associations and key influencers. We then capitalized on our familiarity with the material handling industry to create and curate relevant content to capture attention and spur engagement. 

Give them something to talk about — and keep it fresh.

Rather than simply tweeting pictures of forklifts or links to press releases, we partnered with Yale to develop campaigns based on conferences, trade shows, holidays and trending topics. Weekly #TransformationTuesday updates highlighting Yale customer stories and regular #ForkliftFriday fact tweets became staples of the social media content calendar. For National Forklift Safety Day, safety tips and trivia questions reached the material handling audience and established Yale as a thought leader. 

Trade shows and other national conferences provide opportunities for Yale representatives to contribute with live tweets and allow the brand to stay on top of relevant conversation to drive booth traffic and position as a thought leader. Ongoing reporting and analysis helps refine the program and keep things fresh. Comparing weekly and monthly metrics of impressions, engagements and new followers reveals what type of content is most effective and fosters a cycle of continuous improvement.

Consistent growth outperforms expectations.

Yale set out to increase followers by 50 percent and engagement by 25 percent over the course of a year. In less than eight months, followers doubled (from 442 to 1,093), impressions tripled (from 9,798 to 35,500) and engagement quadrupled (from 137 to 564). In addition to positive numerical gains, Yale’s Twitter success boosts employee morale and helps raise the bar for social media use in the material handling industry, with trade associations and keynote speakers regularly sharing and engaging with posts from Yale publicizing industry events. 

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