So it’s very clear to myself and the rest of the Social Media community that at present Facebook is the undeniable leader of the Social Networking world. I mean with them taking steps to consume what was its biggest competitor just a few short years ago in MySpace and essentially starting to transition it into Facebook’s entertainment network. Along with 69% growth between March of ’09 and March of 2010, over 500 million users half of which log in on any given day it’s hard to argue with progress and numbers. But while Facebook is like a casual conversation between old friends catching up the way you would at say a wedding, Twitter is something much different and more geared towards our current business needs. Twitter is a soapbox for the world to stand on and introduce ourselves to the everyone present. It is a large Social gala where you don’t know everyone yet you have the opportunity to meet all these people and have yourself know to the entire party.
The reason more businesses have not already taken advantage of Twitter as their primary Social Marketing tool is because it has not been properly explained to them what it’s true function and benefits for businesses are. As well as the fact that Twitter is like standing at the podium and not everyone feels comfortable or knows how to stand in the spotlight. That being said most small businesses are using an existing employee who told the boss they have to get on Social Media because they are on Facebook constantly and see how many brands are their advertising. These people have little to no knowledge of Twitter and it’s functions and probably only see it as a place to let people know where you ate breakfast and that you just had custom wheels put on at Wheel Concepts Nation.
The reality is that Twitter is so much more and in fact is much more of a marketing platform than any of the other big players in the Social Media field. With 175 million users (up from 75 million at the end of 2009) along with 65 million tweets posted each day, it’s clear Twitter is a place you can most definitely be heard. Some of the other advantages for businesses using Twitter that it is set up for you to post and go so it isn’t as time-consuming as Facebook where your success is dependent on constant interaction. While you are constantly posting on Twitter those posts aren’t creating a conversation that you must engage in they are simply a jump off point for your followers to navigate to somewhere else. Also with Twitter you have the advantage of one feed pooling all users as it is not necessary to be “Friends” for someone to follow you.
With a new look, a new CEO, and a very clear monetization plan in the form of promoted products Twitter IS the ad space of the future taking over where TV, Radio, and Print is leaving off. With Multi-National brands such as Coca-Cola and Starbucks already approving and endorsing the new format before it has been fully rolled out, and 51% of all business owners survey saying they would like to use promoted products it’s a clear sign that the time to get on board is NOW.
What Twitter is doing is becoming an interest network where businesses can target specific interest groups as opposed to social groups (what you’re in to vs. who you know). This means when your company presents a promotion on Twitter it will be presented to your particular interest group therefore making them much more likely to take action, because you are promoting something they definitely have an interest in and want.
It’s very clear to everyone in the know that Twitter is where Social Media Marketers need to be focusing their efforts. And while Facebook is still a very useful and necessary tool that should not be ignored, as it is The Social Network, businesses large and small have the unique opportunity in Twitter to harness a network that is just finding its way. All this at a point when Twitter though not yet the Juggernaut Facebook is, is well on its way.