Posts Tagged 'micro-blogging'

10 lessons Twitter should have taught you in 2009

You know we’re all amazed at the power of Twitter and the numbers don’t lie. I know I am. But if Twitter went away tomorrow what would you do? How would you adapt? As we have all seen when Twitter does goes down for any prolonged amount of time, the silence is deafening. Some migrate over to Facebook and still others bounce over to friendfeed. But at those times, if you just stop for a moment you notice some things, actually a few things.

This morning I was thinking about those things and then some, and in those times you have to gather your thoughts quickly. Here’s my take on Twitter and real time conversations. Did you notice these things?

1) Our need for real time communication is insatiable

2) Our desire for a platform or a “place” that supports real time communication is what has fueled growth on the internet over the last 12 years.

3) The more focused these type of platforms are, the more successful they are and possibly you!

4) Simple wins

5) Plurk wasn’t simple.

6) LiveFyre will have potential

7) Friendfeed is not the alternative you think and neither is Facebook.

8. A premium level can exist but value has to trump the bells and whistles; And you won’t use it unless everyone else is.

9) The premium level has to have 99.9% uptime in order for you to trust it.

10) Yes, real time instantaneous communication is a great thing for businesses, and an awesome networking tool, but the real power will lie in its ability to bridge the gap with the customer. And the customer needs to know that they have this channel to access where they can get real answers from real people and get real results in….real time.

In the end,  I think Google still might win. If you look at this past year, Sidewiki and Google Wave were and are diamonds in the rough for real time communications, they’re just waiting for you to figure them out and…  given that those 2 came out in 2009, know that Google is not done, never forget that.

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10 quick ways for brands to change their monologue on Twitter

huck

As more and more companies continue to swarm to Twitter, all trying to see what the buzz is about, there are plenty that are using it now that are just not utilizing it correctly.  So here’s a quick primer. These are 10 sure-fire ways to change the monologue to dialogue real quick.

Instead of telling us how great your company is, Respond/Reply to someone else’s tweet to keep the conversation going.

Rather than push your standard one-way message, Retweet something that could have value for others.

Retell some information that perhaps someone missed that can save them time or possibly money-they’ll appreciate it!

If someone shared some information for your benefit, maybe others could benefit from it too. Why no Reshare it?

You see a person asking a question, you know the answer, Reach out to them and answer it!

Don’t always take, try being a Resource to your network or your existing customers sometime.

You get more out of Twitter if you realize that it’s as much about Reciprocity as it is anything else.

You could stay behind your walled garden but why not Rebuild the relationship with your customers?

Revitalize and Reinvigorate brand perception by being accessible and approachable.

But most of all…Be Real

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Why people are leaving Twitter

According to Nielsen last month, a full 60% of users who sign up to use Twitter fail to return the following month. And in the 12 months  before the “Oprah effect,”  retention rates were even lower: only 30% returned the next month.

I have a theory as to why that might be and it’s pretty simple.

Example #1

twit

It’s probably a given that most new users have heard about Twitter and want to try it out. But this homepage doesn’t do much to explain it. Does it? By the way, the home page? That’s pretty much the same one they have used from the get-go. Of course you may click on the watch a video link for a how-to, but me thinks most will just go ahead and sign up and jump right in. In which case you  get the following screen after you have registered.

twit2

Is this intuitive?  Don’t you think it’s time to at least re-do the UI/Homepage?

Twitter Angst

It’s tough to avoid writing about Twitter, it’s everywhere, but you know what? That’s ok. We did the same for Facebook too. As more and more N00bs flock to Twitter, I thought it was important that right out of the blocks, some things are done right. Here is a vlog promoting some of the things that you might want to think about. In short, I talk about tweeting as yourself, using your pic as an avatar,understand why you are following and why you follow and lastly-it’s all about value.

The Long Tail of Twitter

tweet

Ok Much has been written or much was written yesterday about Twitter. I’m not sure why yesterday, but for whatever reason, yesterday was that day, my post included. So I found myself embroiled both via blog responses and via Twitter, defending in some cases what I see as the best way for me to use Twitter.

Here’s a quick recap of what was written.

Guy Kawasaki’s post just flew totally in the face of my post, but he did mention some things that you should do regardless of your ultimate goal on how you’re going to use Twitter. But his post is more about being the Uber-Twitter user, and I just can’t do #4 Which is follow everyone who follows me- I’m sorry but I would like to get to know “some” of the people I’m following. I think Guy and I have a different perception of definition of what Twitter is or should be used for., Though I do admit, that I follow some of the social media whores-not sure why, but I do.

Alan Wolk has totally nailed his post which speaks to why he thinks Twitter is going to be cluttered with N00bs, more experts, and gaggles of clueless wannabe’s and everything in between. Which means my Twitter post makes even more sense!

Business week has written about how ubiquitous micro-blogging and Twitter have become, which means a vertical version only makes sense right? And then we have Information weeks article on Twitter tools to turbocharge your microblogging Wow, didn’t know I needed to turbo charge it! Here’s Computer World’s 5 ways to tap the power of the tweet which actually are pretty close to what you should do and not as self serving and indulgent as Guy Kawasaki’s directives. And then we have the Top 10 ways to attract followers on Twitter which is a total link bait link juice article.

If you really want to know all things Twitter, and don’t feel like waiting for the next piece of hyperbole then go to Laura Fitton’s site, she blogs about all things micro-blogging and she actually brings some sanity to it all- Though I can’t stop thinking about what a tweet is worth, knowing full well that that is where this is all heading. Transactional conversations are coming, trust me.

Ok so I’m going to sum up one of the best ways to get the most out of Twitter, do you know how search marketing experts and Chris Anderson talk about the Long Tail? Well why would you want to follow 5000 people who all tweet at once about 5000 different subjects and 5000 different links? When you could follow 1000, or 750 or 500 people, get to know who they are and what they’re all about, and develop a vertical relationship?

I’m going to quote Chris here and splice/blend his words and my thoughts to make my point about Twitter:

The long tail aspect of Twitter does exist, but the data tells us that there may really be no head or body when it comes to following thousands upon thousands of people without any focus or reason. When it comes to Twitter, everyone is hell bent on following as many people as possible, but the fact of the matter is, Twitter traffic has the potential to be long tail and the word “long” doesn’t do the length of the tail justice. The long tail of Twitter is vertical.

Thanks Chris.

Twitter chokes…again

So I was just remarking on how well Twitter performed during the last Twebinar and was also telling someone how I received 25 new followers, and then the next thing you know, I start seeing tweets of people who lost hundreds, thats right hundreds of followers. I lost 40.  If you’re curious as to what your numbers WERE go here Twittercounter 

I would also suggest reading TwitterCounter, Inflation and Moby Dick The excuses as usual, are vague if not nonexistent from Twitter who has basically said, they’re cleaning out “spammers”. Can’t we take care of that? As it is, a quick scan can show you who’s a spammer, it’s not like they’re hiding, with names like amanda492 or tracy312 and what not, they’re easy as hell  to find.  They’re following 2,345 people and have 12 followers, I mean WTF?

We’ve been talking a lot lately about protecting the brand and I have to be honest, I know that there are certain market segments that utilize Twitter more than others but, and I’ve said this before, someone is going to come along and blow Twitter out of the water. They will build something faster, more reliable and failsafe. Find a need and fill it. Well guess what,  Can you say?

Opportunity

Want to see lots of pissed off Twitter people? Go to Summize and type in #suckit. Wonder if Twitter is following that? Can you say Brand Failure? Can you say No Brand Loyalty? Can you say revolt? How many times do we have to put up with this?

 

 

 

 

Twitter is not a traditional media outlet.

With that being said we should not expect what is tweeted to be completely accurate all the time., or rather we should expect what we read coming off of twitter with a grain of salt.  Someone got ahold of this parody website about Jared of Subway fame and tweeted it across the Twitterverse.

To get the full story, go over to LouisGray. At the least, instead of tweeting what you hear, do some research on your on. If you or they had at least visited the site in question, a quick read would have told you that it was all bullshit. Here’s a blurb:

Jared was more than the public man we all came to know and love, he was veritably the private man with whom we all wished we could have split a bag of baked Lay’s. Like any onion, you start peeling the skin and you find another layer, another and another, each one as eye-wateringly sad as the one before it.

Buddy, we miss you and we always will.

Jared played him some mean table tennis (ping pong, if you prefer) and could beat even the best players in a best 3 out of 5 more often than not.

He had a retro Asteroids machine in his garage he used to challenge us to, but he had the high scores on it, and it seemed like, no matter how grand any of could aspire to become, once we returned, all the scores were once again reset to his own, as if by divine intervention.

Come on people…Between Twitter being down, or not showing replies, or just plain not working right, and now the spreading of erroneous information. I’m surprised Twitter isn’t melting before our eyes! With that being said, they are far from being a reliable and credible media source.

16 random negative Twitter-pinions

Ok so Twitter has been up as of late, so maybe the above cartoon is not as applicable. But something that is, are people’s opinions or their  general “take” on Twitter. Want to see some of the more creative answers to the question, do you Twitter? Interesting insight to say the least.

-”Personally, I don’t see the need to follow anyone that closely nor for anyone to follow me that closely. Nor do I want it either way”

-”Marc, call me a troglodyte, but I see no allure to this.”

-”, I don’t give a twitter if someone is looking at olives on isle four third shelf up. ;)

-”Big Brother, anyone?? “

-”No, I am not interested in what you had for lunch, nor do I share such information with those following me.”

-”I’ve tried it. It could become a black hole that you never get out of. It can suck up your time.”

-”Maybe it will become the new texting once devices catch up with the tech.”

- It’s a question of establishing followers that I find the least attractive aspect of Twitter — if you don’t have followers, you can become sort of psychotic, always talking to yourself in a tiny room with no one to listen to your persistent updates. “

-” It seems pointless and just another time waster and login you have to try and remember”

-”The internets biggest waste of time ever!”

-”If Twitter is as I understand it, I’m not clear on how it is that any user types anything other than “I’m typing on Twitter”.

-”Either I need enlightenment or Twitter users need lives. Maybe second lives?”

-”Seems voyeuristic or reminiscent of horror and stalker flicks!”

-”It’s a time suck”

-”God bless. to each his/her own, and other sundry platitudes to that effect. But for me, nope. “

-”I don’t know if it will ever become mainstream. But it does remind me of the way my teenagers use text messaging now. “

To each his own I guess. I find it interesting that there is such a strong negative opinion, but even more interesting is that some of them may have not ever used it, either. What is your opinion of Twitter? Obviously, even if you have not used it before, you seem to have one. Mad shout out to geek and poke btw.

 

 

Can Twitter and Plurk co-exist?

Anybody remember the Hatfields and McCoys? Check out this picture and read what you can of the sign:

Civil war conflicts, romantic entanglements, family oriented discord, property disputes, mixed with mountain pride…. Yeeeeehaaaaa. Mabel, git my gun!

Ok..so the guy on the left is Twitter and the the feller on the right is Plurk.. The guy on the left looks like he’s tolerating the guy on the right, doesn’t it? It’s sorta the way I’m seeing whats happening right now between the 2 currently. The golden child versus the upstart. Ali versus Frazier, Firefox versus IE, Kirk versus Khan? Leno versus Letterman.

I know I’m stretching the relationship a bit, if you want to call it a relationship but….really, it’s a situation where eventually you are going to end up in one of two camps but not both…  At the least, they are labor intensive, don’t you think? As I have alluded to in a previous post, social networking is hard work, and that includes the likes of micro blogging using  the aformentioned Twitter and Plurk.

This topic stems from a LinkedIn question I have currently active in which I asked Do you Twitter? If so why? and if not, how come? For now I’d like to pull from some of the tremendous answers I received from some really really smart people that speak to the duel that is heating up thanks to the Twitter outages of the past few weeks.

 Here’s a quick thought maybe Twitter and Plurk could hang together like..

.

 Ben and Jerry?

Those scarry 70′s mugshots notwithstanding, we might as meld the two micro-blog sites together and create another entity called Twurk? Plitter? Plutter? Let me digress, before I lose you and share with you some thoughts and links about what others have to say about Twitter and Plurk.

First off, Daniel Schutzsmith provided a great link to a post he wrote called 20 things I learned using Twitter, it’s informative, has a ton of links and makes sense.(nice glasses btw, Daniel)

Next, although this person did not specifically chime in on her love or hate for Twitter, I still liked her post, Melissa Chang, tells me why she likes Twitter, bumps and all…

Beth Harte of OnPath technologies supplied not only some great observations but also 3 great links to 3  great articles that speak to exactly what is good, bad and ugly about Twitter and Plurk. the first is by Mack Collier titled, Getting individuals excited while trying to create a community, I like Mack, and he brings up some great points about Plurk.

Beth’s next suggestion was to read a post by Jason Falls, titled 5 reasons Plurk is better than Twitter and vice versa, who by no coincidence, was recommended to me by Todd Defrens in response to my top 30 social media experts, and 17 thought leaders posts. Jason has some thoughts as well about Plurk you might find interesting.

Lastly, she mentioned a post by Frank Martin  called The question of Plurk, which lays It all out pretty succinctly, screen shots and all. I highly recommend it. He seems to be a champion for the Plurk cause, but it’s cool, it’s all good. Ultimately, I think Twitter and Plurk can co-exist just like:

Why not? What sayeth you?


The Deets

Marc Meyer is a Digital and Social Media Strategist at DRMG. This is my personal blog where I share observations, thoughts and opinions that are all my own.

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