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Twittering Up a Storm

It seems like everyone these days is now Twittering – the micro blogging platform in which people “follow” each others’ updates via a live, instant message-like chat stream. You will see my recent Twitter updates on the top of the sidebar on the right-hand side of my blog.

I first started Twittering in November of 2007 when UBD attended the Blog World Expo. I used Twitter to keep my readers up to date of what I was doing while we were in Vegas at the expo.

At that time, not many other people were using Twitter and I had less than 10 followers. Now, in the past week, the number of people following me on Twitter has more than tripled!

What accounts for such a rapid increase in the number of Twitter users and followers?

I have no idea! Twitter is simply becoming more viral by the day. Way too many of my homeboys and homegirls are now using Twitter.

About a week ago I told John Chow to get on Twitter, and within a few minutes he was signed up and following me. In the past week, John now has almost 500 people following him on Twitter.

Many people seem to think Twitter is just useless bantering, but I have started to see its benefits. For example, Twitters allows you to:

  • Keep up to date with what your friends and colleague are doing
  • Be on the cutting edge of breaking news – for example, TechCrunch’s Michael Arrington posts tidbits of upcoming news which have not yet appeared on his site
  • Keep you readers updated of your new blog posts using the Twitter Updater WordPress plugin
  • Share interesting stories or websites you have found with your followers
  • Start conversations with people whom otherwise you may never talk to
  • Network and become more well-known within online communities
  • Ask questions and receive answers from the people who follow you

I asked John, “Is Twitter just useless chat or do you think it allows you to better keep in touch with your readers?” This was his response:

Twitter is like having one big mega chat room. It can be a huge time waster or a good marketing channel depending on how you go about it. I got on twitter as a marketing move and I’m trying very to keep it from being a time waster. It’s VERY HARD!

I have noticed that as more of the people I know have started twittering, I have become more a more active Twitterer myself. In the past week, for example, I have updated Twitter (a.k.a “Tweeted”) over 70x… Compare that to less than 10x in the previous 5 months.

Writing a quality blog post takes significant time and effort, but with Twitter, you only have 140 characters to post, so no one is expecting a novel. A good “Tweet,” as they are called, may simply be a link to a cool blog post, or a question/answer to a problem a fellow Twitterer is having.

I highly recommend Twitter to anyone who is looking to network within a community and potentially increase new readers for their websites or blogs. I know that I will be using Twitter more over the next few months to stay in contact with my readers and also to network with people. I have even started to receive quite a few “follow” requests from many people local to me in Scottsdale, Arizona.

So, what are you waiting for? Follow me on Twitter!


24 thoughts on “Twittering Up a Storm”

  1. I’m not really sure what it is either. Twitter has suddenly exploded in the last couple of weeks. I joined because of Gary Jones from BlueFur and Bob Buskirk from ThinkComputers. From there, it just sort of snowballed, including John Chow.

  2. I’ve only been on twitter a few weeks too, but am loving it… one thing I’ve found is that it is very easy to get into – once you start following people and they follow you back, you’re instantly involved in the conversation. You don’t need to be a ‘power user’ to get benefits from it… sure, you won’t get 500 followers in a few days like John Chow, but you don’t need to either 10-20 followers and you really start to feel involved.

    http://twitter.com/martyj

  3. Is the Twitter bubble going to burst like the one of Entrecard. I put entrecard and not much happy with it. I am in two minds before joining Twitter.

  4. I use twitter tools does the same thing and its great! btw thanks for the help last night! wp-cache really speeds up my blog a lot! hopefully it helps with future db crashes – or no more of getting them …crosses fingers…

  5. No thank you. I have been cutting myself off from one network after the other as I simply am not able to get on with the more important work. Twitter will become an obsession that I can ill afford now.

  6. I can’t get over how much of a turn off it is to find out that some of the entrepreneurs I used to look up to got sucked into such a rediculous and useless network of followers.

    Following what someone else does on a daily/hourly basis ultimately has NO relevance on your life outcome.

    Twitter that ;)

  7. Nate,

    So there you are – too ! I think, even with all those points you mentioned, twiter ends up being a time waster to me. Initially I had the same understanding as you and was equally excited. but not anymore. It’s a time waster yes.

      1. I would definitely read that post. I’ve purposely avoided Twitter so far for this very reason. I just don’t have the time to play with stuff like that unless I really enjoy it or I can see a clear benefit for the time invested.

  8. Hey Nate, it’s been long. You know what, I’m gonna join this Twitter thing, although I’m not fully convinced I’ll find it any fun or useful, but let’s give it a try..you’ll be the first to follow :).

    See you around,
    Allen.H

  9. Wow, this things sure has gone viral. The guys who do my website marketing were telling me I needed to set myself up on Twitter. I figured they were just trying to create more billable hours. I see several people see it as a waste of time. I guess I should at least check it out.

  10. Good post, I believe used in the right way, twitter can be a effective tool to help you with your business, but it can also very easily develop into an expensive toy that really accomplishes nothing. Thanks for a good post.

    Pugsley

  11. I think twitter will now become even more know as I saw a CNN news article on a person using twitter as he was getting fired from Yahoo and was twittering about the experience. I am not convicted yet that is not just another way to IM to a group of people. And that might be great for some, but not for the bigger business population.

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