If you think you’ve run out of ideas on how to improve lead generation and attract new followers, it’s time to learn about Twitter bots as an innovative online marketing tool. The bots are an automated way you can send a message to followers who have just connected with you on Twitter, perhaps as a thank you for the follow. The best part is that you can include a link to your site along with the message, thereby generating more leads and giving you an additional tool to interact with prospects. If you have questions about this technology and how Twitter bots work, here are the answers you seek. What are Twitter Bots? The best non-techie description of a Twitter bot is found on WikiPedia, which defines them as “[A] program used to produce automated posts on the Twitter microblogging service, or to automatically follow Twitter users.” Wiki goes on to describe some bots as promotional in nature, generating replies and “retweets” in response to other content that includes a certain word or phrase. The bots can be helpful in certain situations, such as the “@EarthquakesSF” which tweets about these natural disasters as they’re unfolding based on seismic information gathered in real-time. Other Twitter bots tweet a joke message or entertaining quote when a certain keyword is tweeted by a user. Can Twitter Bots help with lead generation? Once you understand how they function, you can see how Twitter bots can be useful in online marketing. Keep in mind that it’s important to avoid being recognized as spam when implementing them. However, you shouldn’t run afoul of spamming by using the above example regarding a “Thank you” to a user who has just started following your profile. When you include a link to your site, to a landing page or some other content, you take advantage of lead generation opportunity. How can I implement Twitter Bots to boost my lead generation? The truth is that creating Twitter bots is quite complicated in nature if you don’t have a programming background. However, that’s not to say it’s impossible. There are two applications that can help you implement one with a few clicks. 1. Twittbot: This program enables you to set up as many as 700 tweets to post according to criteria you select, or at random, allowing for certain time intervals in between. You’re also able to implement responses to mentions or trigger tweets based on a follower interaction or a keyword. 2. RoundTeam: By identifying criteria such as user or Twitter search, RoundTeam allows you to set a number and frequency of retweets based on the listed conditions. As a warning, you should know that this platform has been associated with spam under certain circumstances. Hopefully, the answers to these questions will help you get started using Twitter bots for lead generation and other online marketing goals. If anything, they’re something for you to learn more about and potentially master as you connect with more of your social media followers.