I get this question a lot, so in an effort to answer the question once and for all, I thought I would write a blog post about it. To start out, I have to admit, I had the same question. I made fun of Twitter for a year before I started using it. Like I always say, I don’t even find myself mildly interesting let alone believe anyone else will. I am going to echo something that you often hear when people refer to Twitter – “you don’t understand it until you try it.”
First of all, I don’t like the way Twitter explains itself. They say it is a network of people answering the question, “What are you doing right now?” However, the people who only do that have few followers since nobody wants to read “I am eating a sandwich” 10 times a day.
The best description for Twitter is that it is THE aggregation tool. It is one of the best tools available for short snippets of content along with links to rest of the content. It is a phenomenal tool for blog promotion. It is a great tool for finding and sharing great content with others. I read all of my news and blogs on Twitter. It is the portal to all great content.
From a marketing perspective, Twitter is like having your own TV or radio station. You have a group of people raising their hand saying they want to receive your content. It is the ultimate in permission marketing. People can choose to follow or unfollow based on much they like your content.
Norris Kreuger said: “3 reasons: #1: Missed too much that’s not posted elsewhere, #2: Another way to connect with out of town folks, #3 Need a new addiction”
Brandy said: “I’ve got to have SOME outlet for these random thoughts! It iniates conversations between friends that may not normally happen.”
Richard Paul said: “To expand my circle of influence, connect with people interested in my subject matter, and create new friendships.”
Sharon Fisher said, “1. To get and give pointers to information. 2. To keep up with my friends, news, and people in Idaho.”
Tobin Rogers said: “It’s so quick to connect with people within your industry for networking. You can see what other local professionals are working on. It’s just another great tool.”
Jen Harris said: “Because those are the people I REALLY want to be around.”
Tony Courtwright said: “Simple and real-time communication with industry experts.”
Mark Brummett said: “I follow celebs. (none of my friends have it) But I like knowing what people are up to in real time.”
Dave Bourff said: “‘Cause I can.”
Edward Dunn said: “Socializing, networking, sharing business ideas, learning new ideas, letting everyone know what I had for lunch. Cuz who wouldn’t want to know that?!:-)”
Christopher Barger said: “Because audiences are there.”
No matter what your reason for using it, there is value in Twitter for many different purposes. The only thing I can say is try it. I’ll be your first follower.
How do you use Twitter?
Update: I just saw a great presentation on Twitter by one of its founders, Evan Williams, at the TED Conference. Twitter evolved from what they had initially thought it was going to be and this 8 minute talk does a great job of giving you the history of the evolution. Watch the video here.