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April 03, 2009


edward boches

Believe Twitter matters in a huge way and will only get more significant as a tool on many levels. Have a column coming in AdWeek next week with my thoughts on its value to the individual. Will write again on its value to business and community soon. That doesn't even bring up the technology implications as it gets embedded into everything. By the way, just got your book, Spark. Will read it soon

Maggie Hunt StockShop

Twitter has been a great way for us to market what may be the only remaining independent stock photography agency. We have generated some sales leads, new contributors and fun ideas.

Catherine Paull


Early adopters - ahead of the curve. If you used Twitter as part of your curriculum and made it functional for your students, they would be using it to.

The word is just getting out about Twitter - and some relatively recent videos (Pogue & Cali Lewis) made it seem accessible and possible for the less adventurous (like me).

I'm still trying to figure out WHY I'm using Twitter (I'm not a marketer). I don't see it being very relevant to my business. But I love the tool and am learning a lot from those whom I follow!

Catherine Paull (@cpmomcat)

Derek Scruggs

From what I've heard Twitter is not popular with college students and twenty somethings. It's seen as for "old people." I've also heard that Facebook is falling out of favor for the same reason. In fact, I know someone who is starting a company to focus on social networking for this demographic for precisely this reason. He says he has research to back it up, but I haven't seen it.

Suzanne Lainson

This article talks about Social Networking Fatigue among youth.

Twitter has been useful for me professionally, but I cannot imagine the Gen X mothers using it. They like Facebook because they can get get caught up with friends late at night after their kids go to bed. It would be impossible for them to monitor Twitter in real time.

I know quite a few 20-something musicians who also don't see the point. They have enough trouble maintaining the social networks they are already using.

Unless there are conversations you need to monitor in real time, there's not much reason to use Twitter. It's designed to get responses right away and many people are too busy for that.

Certainly Gen Xers like text messages, but that is generally one-to-one or one-to-few communication. They don't need or want to be immediately plugged into 100s or 1000s of people.


great comments, thanks.

Sean Scott

To Whom? is really the key question that needs to be answered. If you're looking for a media platform with wide variety of audience demographics, twitter will get there in 2010 just based on its growth. But i would argue that as soon as it gets to being the next myspace and facebook, it will wither away, replaced by the latest conversational app/tool/platform.

The real key for agencies is two-part. a) really understand what your customers or potential customers do online (If i see another report about how high someone indexes on CNN (everyone does) I'm going to take a media planner out) b) be able to find and identify these niche conversational platforms before they become myspace and make the messaging relevant to the community within


It matters. Here's why I believe.

1. realtime - there is something new here, but it seems to be a good place to consolidate "alerts" from people, organizations or even things. I dont know that there has been a place to subscribe to realtime stuff online, in a useful way.

2. its open - in a whole bunch of ways. from the API (which has spawned useful tools, which Twitter folks just wouldnt have had the time to do. But perhaps more important, its being hacked on by the end users - from the @ structure to # for search and URL shortners. When last did you see a company where others were offering to help figure out a business model? In short, this is much bigger than Twitter as an organization but a larger group of toolmakers, who take this in different directions and make it a messaging platform, to rival SMS and e-mail potentially.

3. ripple impact - I dont think the FB redesign was an accident. I think they recognize that "status updates" might be a core part of lightweight interaction (it now subsumes all types of content sharing). I have noticed that since I synched Twitter with FB updates, I actually get more responses on FB from folks who dont use twitter. Interesting. And finally, I see impact in the numbers from Bitly to our Blog, traffic from FB seems to come from status updates, to a large extent.

Other impacts - I dont want to open a discussion about influencers...but, if I think about Twitter as a wire feed, replacing the old school AP or Reuters feed, isnt the importance a function of what people do with what they find on Twitter? Seems like the shared ideas, opinions, links, etc all are impacting how people research and publish and through this the ultimate reach of Twitter. I like the way the folks at are thinking about influence (FYI).

In fact, I have noticed (and others have noted) that Google is indexing in near realtime, so I see posts indexed within 20min. So it is impacting SEO, which impacts...well doesnt it impact everything :)

Finally, I think Twitter is skewing older - not sure why, so this may be why your quick student poll didnt seem too interesting.

Mike Brown


Despite what seems like explosive growth and buzz, particularly in the past several months, user numbers suggest Twitter is a niche application right now.

One test: throw out the names of Twitter rock stars (TRS) to a more general business audience and most of the names are unrecognized. Yet, in Twitterland, they're omnipresent and well-recognized.

There's also a misleading visual dimension to Twitter, especially in applications such as Tweetdeck. When you are tweeting at the same time as a TRS, it appears visually as if you're "broadcasting" to the same audience, when in reality only a fraction of people are seeing what you're tweeting by comparison. This visual deception contributes to the "talking to ourselves" phenomenon.

Having said all that, I've experienced dramatic and rapid development of interaction opportunities because of Twitter. The most novel was the opportunity to video an opening segment for an innovation event in Sydney, Australia. Total turnaround time between initial request and event was about 18 hours, hardly time to fly to Sydney for an information sharing opportunity that wouldn't have even surfaced without Twitter. While the interactions have created only random income opportunities so far, that's more a function of my business model right now than a gap in Twitter.

Mike Brown (@brainzooming)

Adam Wohl

I think we're ahead of the curve, and though younger people might not be the majority of Twitter users, that may change. And one way to do that is for brands to actually push the audience to Twitter. Real-time updates present new opportunities for such applications. Example? Well, using...Dominos :) ... Suppose Dominos spends a few million dollars for a 30 second commercial during the 1st half of the Superbowl, announcing a LIVE sweepstakes during halftime where someone will win a pizza a week for a year, or a car or money or ? and that 1000s of other prizes will be won. They just have to go to twitter and follow @Dominossuperbowlgiveaway before halftime starts, then need to return to the page to find out if they've won. How many will sign up? 1000s? 100s of 1000s? millions? And during halftime, customers will sit glued to the domino twitter page and essentially be a captive audience (at no cost to dominos). Dominos will then tweet entrants who are eliminated, or winners, who must tweet back in order to claim their prizes. And/or maybe dominos uses the opportunity to give out a coupon or discount code. This is just a simple example of how the benefit of real-time interactivity that twitter provides can expand a client base. Another interactive, contest-based example was written about earlier today when singer Lily Allen hid concert tickets around San Francisco and tweeted hints about their location.

Darrell Whitelaw

its gaining steam, my little sister is currently having twitter and wordpress used in her emerging media's class in her freshman year of college. though right now it is littered with "social media guru's" and advertising/marketing people that's to be expected, we early adopt everything. by the end of this year we'll see a mass pickup in users and a huge influx of connections. and at that point it is REALLY going to matter, a service that crosses telco borders from internet to text message, into your email inbox and right to your cell phone. this is next level invasion.

the question i keep asking is are we smart enough to be able to engage these people on a level that they WANT to invite us into their lives on such a personal level. this is no banner ad solution. the customer is going to have to want to listen to you. but when you engage them right and get them glued this is as close to zero cost/high return marketing as you're going to ever get.


What marketers aim to do is define their target and predict how that specific sector will behave.

If Twitter matters to your audience, then it matters to those trying to communicate with them.

Brett T. T. Macfarlane

Does Twitter matter you ask? Depends.

Do you, your business, or brand have anything interesting to say?

If not, Twitter probably doesn't matter. Nor do TV spots, newspaper ads, DM pieces or much else.

If you do have something interesting to say, it probably can matter, provided you do something interesting or useful with it.

Phillip Underhill

Twitter strikes me as quick and easy way for people to explore the boundaries of online self identity. After about 20 minutes, this higher cause is drowned out by the noise of shameless self promotion and self worship.

The Twitter cultural phenomenon will die, but it's likely that pieces of the technology will evolve into more useful forms of customer service, marketing and entertainment.

Phillip Underhill
Executive Creative Director

Brett Stapleton


I'm thinking about the topic too (just a hobby). I believe those familiar with Twitter now are early adopters and ahead of the curve.

Glad to hear journalism students are directed to take this seriously.

Paul keeps wondering how anyone who is a good reporter or writer will make enough money to support his family or life? Is Madison Ave going in for the change too? Is Google getting all the revenue? Just wondering how this will work?



Hi john..

in my opinion, i love twiter so much..
not just to share everything to my friends and family, i like twitter because it very useful on my marketing strategy..

by the way, thanks for your useful post


you bet.


Thanks for keeping updates..

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LV Cosmic Blossom

Many cultural forces set the stage for the new art, too.


23RQ4R Good point. I hadn't thought about it quite that way. :)


Go to the Citizen Audit link. Mankind truly is screwed. Looks like ahotner audit that needs an audit. Still, they say they only found 7% of WG1 references that weren't peer reviewed or grey lit. Hmmm, my Spidey senses are tingling . # IPCC chairman's claim that the report relies solely on peer-reviewed sources is not supported But as we all know, grey literature is allowed.[DC: . You'll have to scroll down to find WG1. The chapters most often attacked (2, 3, 9, 10) are all up around 94-95% peer reviewed references. The remaining 5% appear to be monographs and text books and the like. That's as far as I feel like going for now. ]


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