Saturday, 19 June 2010

Why Brands ABSOLUTELY DO Belong on Twitter

1. Twitter is Opt-In
Drapeau said that Twitter was for people to talk to people and not brands to project their message. Particularly distasteful to Drapeau was a humanless brand dumping useless information or worse, some SEO company marketing in a company’s Twitter account.
Fundamentally, I agree with what Drapeau says about the spammy Twitter accounts that are used just to get one more silly site link out there by an SEO company or brands that totally misunderstand and therefore misuse Twitter. It undermines Twitter’s usefulness in a small part. But since, as the author himself points out, Twitter is an opt-in service (meaning I can follow who I want and not follow advertisers) the impact is minimal.

2. Twitter is the New Phone Company
The debate did not rage on Twitter so much a simmer, mostly with brands themselves coming to their own defense. This is by no means the only debate out there on the usefulness of Twitter either as a form of communication or as a marketing tool. Many purists will probably cringe to hear me mention Twitter as a “marketing tool” and I sympathize with them.
Look, I am a centrist. Sorry to sound so wishy-washy about it but I believe that there is room for both brands and for person-to-person communication on Twitter. In fact, that is what I would argue the thing that makes Twitter so great. I believe it was Chris Brogan who recently Tweeted that he follows so many people because he thinks of Twitter as the new phone company. It is certainly a useful utility that might even grow up to be even too useful and powerful to ever be meaningfully monetized. Not that it can’t happen but Twitter has become such an extremely dynamic form of communication that it may transcend that simplistic, “where is your business model” mentality.

3. Brands Can Have Personalities Too
Like snowflakes, no two Tweeple (as some call Twitter users) are alike. It’s like a geek version of the Breakfast Club: there’s the shy lurker follower that follows everyone but rarely Tweets. The social butterfly who just @ replies to everyone all day. The loudmouthed soapboxer who just likes to talk about what is best for other people. The intellectual sharer who provides useful links and retweets. The big mouth that just goes around starting trouble with random Tweeple. Or the egoist Twitterer who can only talk about themselves or their newest, greatest vidcast.
In the end, we follow who we follow for our own reasons. On the TWIT podcast someone said that we shape our own stream on Twitter. Nothing could be truer. My personal strategy is to keep the people I follow to around 100 people or under. For that, I must be selective. I have people I just like. People who are big time influencers. Others are loudmouths that entertain me with their Tweets. And others whom I respect their intellectualism. In there are some brands. I actually have a lot of respect for people who Tweet under a brand. Brands can have personalities too.


Anonymous said...


Brands Absolutely Do Belong on Twitter!

Thank You For Sharing!

dan said...

Some information I can finally use...never understood about how many people to follow...


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