The New York Times calls Twitter “one of the fastest-growing phenomena on the Internet.”
TIME Magazine says, “Twitter is on its way to becoming the next killer app,” and Newsweek noted that “Suddenly, it seems as though all the world’s a-twitter.”
Lots of people I know have been telling me about Twitter.
After Facebook, Twitter is the in thing right about now.
And up till now, I have been resistant to the idea of signing up for Twitter. I hear mostly stories about how Twitter wastes time because nothing interesting ever happens and people tweet about such everyday behaviour.
Like hell others care what you ate for breakfast. Hmmm.
Or that your cat puked on the carpet last night.
For those not in the know, Twitter is akin to summarising your thoughts into 140 characters and putting those thoughts online. If you’re a celebrity, people would want to follow your tweets.
That’s what I thought initially. Regular folks don’t have much going on, right?
Ah. That’s where I learnt that I was so wrong.
Twitter is just like blogging. You have to bring to the fore all manner of relevant, engaging and valuable content even though it’s at 140 characters.
Precisely at 140 characters, you force yourself to tweet about something worth tweeting. Not “I got to work today but there was a traffic crawl” kind of tweet.
Ugh. Who wants to follow that? (Unless someone tells me: There’s been an accident on the Penang Bridge right now at 7:15am causing a traffic crawl – that’s useful coz then I might detour and use the Penang ferry!)
No, the real charm of Twitter is in revealing exciting bits of your day as it unfolds.
The exciting tweets are about sharing what you’ve learnt, interesting links disguised happily of course with shortened URLs, who you’ve met and retweeting them (like a shout out), where you’ve been, what useful stuff you’ve been doing (opposed to the humdrum stuff). what you’re thinking of right now, what you intend to do later etc. We want to crawl inside your brain. Like literally!
It’s not only individuals who are using Twitter to spread their ideas.
Companies are using Twitter too to gain insight into their customers and get them as fans/followers of their tweets. For example, check out Dell on Twitter: twitter.com/DellOutlet
Anyway, if you would like to find out how you can use Twitter effectively for business and PR and to connect with the famous, Sarah Milstein’s article on “How Twitter Can Help At Work” is a highly recommended read. She covers almost everything you need to know about this Twitter (all except that in the end, to actually put her advice to use, you must sign up for Twitter.)
So go on, try Twitter out.
I always try something out first before I lay my verdict on it like a blanket. I want to see if it’s really a big time-waster as my friends tell me it is.
I call this my Twitter experiment!
Are you on Twitter?
What do YOU think about this new phenomena?
More importantly, how are you using it to increase visibility and thought leadership for your business?
Update: I finally succumbed and am on Twitter. Find me at http://twitter.com/krista_redbox