Using Twitter to Save Money

By Alison Storm (@alisonstorm) Alison writes for Out of Debt Christian, a daily blog about personal finance, frugality and faith. Follow the blog @ChristianDebt.

piggybankTwitter can sometimes be accused of helping us all waste too much time. Use it the right way, though, and Twitter can help you save something too: Money! It’s easy to find a few money saving tips and opportunities each day on Twitter if you know where to look Here are our suggestions for discovering the next 140 character deal-of-the-day:

Follow the Deal Finders

Part of living a frugal lifestyle is finding the best bargains. Rather than shop around by visiting a bunch of different Web sites, you can simply follow a few key deal hunters on Twitter to gain access to a continuously updated supply of great deals, sales and discounts. Follow users like @CheapCheapCheap to get constant updates on sales and deals that you may not find anywhere else.

Coupon fanatics are well represented on Twitter as well, and @BearableDeals is one of the most helpful around.  She tweets about some serious money savers, including many printable coupons valid at your favorite retailers and lots of freebies you’ll rush to take advantage of, such as free diapers or Bath & Body Works shower gel.

Look for Exclusive Savings by Following Your Favorite Companies

Computer-maker Dell drew big headlines for generating over $1 million in sales over the past holiday season via exclusive promotions to its Twitter followers. The campaign went so well that @DellOutlet now regularly Tweets special Twitter-only offers to its followers. It didn’t take long for other marketers to take notice, with @booksamillion and @zappos offering Twitter-only deals of their own.  This is a trend that appears poised to really take off in the months ahead, so keep an eye out for your favorite retailers and brands.

Search Hashtags to Find Great Saving Suggestions

Hashtags mark that a post is about a certain topic. You can create a hashtag about anything by using  # symbol at the start of the word. To find what others are saying about the topic, just search for it at http://search.twitter.com. Some great hashtags in the savings arena are #frugalitp, #bargains and #coupon. Checking into these hashtags recently, I discovered a hotel in Philadelphia offering rooms for just $1 per night and how to tell if an egg has gone bad (place the egg in a glass of water. If it sinks it’s still good. If it floats it’s no longer fresh.)

Don’t like searching for hashtags? Then let Cheap Tweets do the work for you. This site continuously searches for tweets about great deals, and then posts them for users to vote and comment on.

Get Encouragement

Sometimes staying on track with your money-saving goals can be difficult. It can help to surround yourself with a community of like-minded people. Twitter can be a great source of encouragement for those trying to save money and get out of debt. I enjoy following some of my favorite personal finance bloggers, such as @ConsumerQueen and @FreeFromBroke.  They’re tweets about a big savings win always give me a pick-me-up and many bloggers are quick to reply to my questions or doubts with fast answers and encouraging words. Soon, you may find yourself swapping savings secrets and great deals with your own followers, too.

We may all waste a bit of time on Twitter now and then, but hopefully these ideas will at least help you waste less money!

Comments

  • March 15, 2009

    I had no idea about the Dell Twitter deals. This is great. Now I have more frugal people to follow on Twitter! Maybe I’ll follow you while I’m at it. ;) Really though, great post!

    Thanks,
    Nate

  • March 15, 2009

    Seriously I have never thought of this idea that twitter can actually help us save money by finding bargains but after reading this I just got a ton of knowledge from this post. Personally i always look out for great cheap deals so this one is definitely going to be useful for me…

  • March 15, 2009

    Excellent article and a great way to save money. I need to put it in use now!

  • March 15, 2009

    Interesting article, Alison.

    I’ve often thought about Twitter making me more money (job interviews, freelance work etc), but never about using it to save money.

    I’ve been using Twitter in my fitness regime recently, Tweeting about the sets and reps I do in certain exercises (using the #twitterfitness hash tag). It’s helped me to keep accountable, because I know people are watching. Maybe using Twitter to keep accountable for the financial moves you make is a good move.

    Thanks for the interesting article, Alison.

    Jamie

  • March 15, 2009

    I’ve caught a few deals in the Twitterverse, but really need to get more proactive. Discounts on bigger purchases can mean a lot of saved cash.
    Thanks for the tips!

  • March 15, 2009
    Chris

    Great tips… The link to Cheaptweet is broken though.

  • March 15, 2009
    C Fohlin
    @cfohlin

    FYI… the URL for “Cheap Tweets” should be http://www.cheaptweet.com, no “S.” Great article!

  • March 15, 2009

    Thanks for the TwiTip! We had not thought about using Twitter in this way. It helps consolidate information on the web to save money. The search and hashtag ideas are very helpful.

  • March 15, 2009

    This is great as we are facing economic downturn now.

  • March 15, 2009

    I have met so many awesome people that share the same interest in saving money. The networking alone will help you save hundreds of dollars with these awesome tweets! Thanks Alison!

  • March 15, 2009

    FYI, the Cheap Tweets link doesn’t work. When I put in what I think is the right address (www.cheaptweets.com), I get a note the the blog is open to invited readers only…

  • March 15, 2009

    Twitter is never a waste of time like watching tv commercials is. Twitter rules

  • March 15, 2009

    Cheap Tweets seems to should be Cheap Tweet.

  • March 15, 2009

    Do you know of any UK coupons or offers as could with some, on my own and disabled and starving artist to boot lol

  • March 15, 2009

    Yes, the Cheap Tweet url should be http://www.cheaptweet.com It’s a neat site.

  • March 15, 2009

    Rebecca,
    Try this address: http://cheaptweet.com/
    It’s a really great tool!

    Alison

  • March 15, 2009

    Money saving tip and please pardon the shameless plug, but longtime client eBillme recently launched shopdebtfree.com online shopping mall and if you follow @ebillme every Wednesday you’ll see the debt free deal of the day. I’ve found a lot of great money saving tips on twitted. Keep them coming.

  • March 15, 2009

    Thanks problogger for the mention. Keep the great work up!! Keep the tweetin’ going.
    -Albert @cheapcheapcheap

  • March 15, 2009

    Thank you so much for mention @BearableDeals much appreciated!!

  • March 15, 2009

    Thanks so much for including me!

  • March 16, 2009

    Great info! I follow Home Depot. Wonder if they do any specials for their Tweeple. That would be excellent! Will keep an eye out for more Twitter deals now that you’ve brought this to my attention. Thanks.

  • March 16, 2009

    At first I couldn’t see the purpose of Twitter (like a lot of people) but I’ve seen it become such a useful and fun tool in my frugal arsenal. I’ve won a gift card, hear so many great deals, I’ve seen so many truthful reviews of items, and made lots of friends!

    Seriously, want to know the deal on something (or find out if there’s a deal on something) then throw it out there on Twitter. Twitter is great!

  • March 16, 2009

    Thanks for the great suggestions on two new tweeps to follow.

    For the other best bargains to follow on twitter, check out http://www.tweettop.com/topic/coupons-and-bargains

    Thanks! So glad I foudn this site!

    J

  • March 17, 2009

    No discussion about deals is complete without mentioning @slickdeals!

  • March 17, 2009

    think its a good advice, for doze that could take advnatoge from it, and its give good idea about what or which examples coudl be taken for others contries.

    Than you.

  • March 17, 2009

    Lets save some money. Nice thought.

  • March 17, 2009

    It is surprising how Twitter can help us in so many ways.

  • March 18, 2009

    Great information; different from others. You stand out being different and valuable!

  • March 18, 2009

    Thanks for mentioning those cool twitter users. I never knew about Dell’s coupons for twitter users till now. Thank you so much..

  • March 21, 2009

    Another Twitter Account that helps you a lot is @FreeStuffUS. They post A LOT of FREE Stuff. TONS!!!

  • April 12, 2009

    Thanks for this post, Alison! I didn’t know there were so many ways you could save money on products using Twitter.

  • June 29, 2010
    Jason

    http://www.twitsavings.com is a great coupon site as well

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