Top 5 Reasons Why You Should Use Twitter
Both twitter and facebook have proven their worth, but I was a twitter user long before I was a facebook user. As such, it took me some time to get used to facebook. Now that I've used both for some time I've come to realize the benefit of each. I have noticed that the inverse is true for facebook users that decide to try out twitter - twitter has an akward feel to them. I decided to write this short post on the top five reasons why anyone would find it useful. Hopefully this will be usefull for those of you that have become accustomed to facebook and are thinking about giving twitter a try.
1. All information is public. I know, I know facebook friends; you want to protect your privacy. In twitter there is no such thing as privacy settings. Anything you tweet is automatically accessible to the twitter universe (Everything except for direct private messages). Why this is a good thing is because other users and applications can quickly find you and your topics.
I've personally experienced, on more than one occasion, where I've posted a tweet about a particular product and one of their lead employees or in other cases even their CEO responded. Please keep this a note to be kind, the degrees of separation narrow down to one in the twitter universe.
2. All information is public. Did I say that already? I guess I did. This one is doubly important because it allows you to search all the public tweets. How do you that? You ask. Well you can do it like a caveman and use twitters own search function or you can use many different applications that will provide you with live feed based on keywords and hash tags. As an example check out these two:
3. Degrees of separation to other twitter users are one. If there is a user you want to contact via a tweet you can do it. It's that simple. That can be anyone from your dear wife to the head honcho of your favorite sports team. Simply type "Hey @aplusk (real handle for Ashton Kutcher) what are you up to" and he will get the message. It doesn't mean he will respond and it doesn't mean he won't block you as spam. But it does mean that he will see your message. Use this capability wisely and you can be in contact with anyone on twitter. Not only that, you can follow any individual of your choice. Twitter users love to get as many followers as they can. I chose Ashton's handle specifically because he was the first ever reach a million. That is unlike facebook where one must be careful of whom they let in their circle. All tweets are public anyway!
4. Effective Marketing Tool. It's a great way to promote yourself, your products or your company an once your follower list get's big enough your potential for promoting to your audience really grows. It also helps create a web presence with search engines. Just be careful not to spam folks though because they can block you or even report you as spam and you could lose your account on that basis.
5. Great source of live news. A few months back when the earthquake occurred in Virginia and I happend to be visiting the area, the first thing I did was turn to twitter and search for the hash tag #EARTHQUAKE and found numerous tweets in regards to the earthquake. This news spread more quickly then he traditional TV news.
Many news channels, and public services such as police and fire departments have user accounts and they provide live mini news reports.
This can help you be notified in case of any emergency events. So unlike your news channel reporting "Serial killer on the loose in your neighborhood... details at 10", you can expect to find out what is really going on in real time.
Hopefully this information can help you see twitter in a new light. Don't think of twitter as speaking out into the sky. Think of it as an information sharing network and remember that everyone is listening, even those that are not on your follower list.
As always please leave me a comment below. All feedback is welcome.