Like most things, the concept of a “salesman” has changed greatly over the past couple of decades. In the past, the word “salesman” conjured up images of a sharply dressed middle aged man showing up at your door with a briefcase and a sparkling smile, ready to push his wares and services.

Many experts believe that with the proliferation of technology and the Internet, traditional salesmanship has lost that personal touch. We have seen the steady decline of institutions such as the weekly milk man, and even the occasional visit from an adorable Girl Scout selling cookies seems to hearken back nostalgically to a lost age of door-to-door salesmanship.

However, one new development appears to be bringing back the idea of one-on-one micromarketing: Twitter.

While Twitter certainly lacks the face to face interaction, it does provide a way for companies to reach out to individual consumers, garner their feedback, and engage them in a dialogue (limited to 140 characters, but a dialogue, nonetheless.) Twitter allows salesmen to hear what customers are saying directly and offers them a chance to respond in real time.

As outdated as the old image of a cheesy door-to-door salesman may be, it may help marketers to borrow some of the same concepts when using Twitter for their businesses, namely:

1) Every customer counts and has a voice.

2) The best new ideas for a company often come straight from the consumer.

3) Customers enjoy that extra personal touch.

For those of you old fogeys who have yet to hop on the Twitter bandwagon, it may help to just think of yourselves as a new and improved (and less invasive) version of the traditional door-to-door salesmen of the past….