Twitter. If you’re not on it, you should be. Or so we’re told. It’s social media marketing at its very best and if we’re not using it, we’re not socially marketing ourselves through media properly. Apparently.
Yet I’ve come to know Twitter quite well myself over the last few months and after countless Tweets, retweets and @s, my conclusion is that unless you’re a mega-corporation or a celebrity, it’s not quite all it’s cracked up to be.
You see, most of my loyal followers are fellow businesses — not the consumers I want to be interacting with.
What’s more, the reason they’re following is not because they care what my clients are up to. It’s because like me, they’re trying to increase their followers. All quite shallow really, isn’t it?
As I work for a social media agency, you might believe that I should be praising and thanking Twitter for opening the doors to text type communication on a worldwide scale. That I should, in essence, never say a bad word about it. But why not? If I can’t look at the site objectively, how can I learn how to make the most of what it offers?
And yes, that’s another of my gripes with Twitter. I have a lot to say and if you limit me to 160 characters, I struggle. Fair enough, my work with social media agencies has meant that I can now formulate the perfect bite-size news piece, idea or opinion; but it doesn’t mean I like it.
When it comes to social media marketing, I’m a much bigger fan of Facebook. Facebook doesn’t limit my words, has a broader consumer reach and offers a much simpler platform for encouraging group discussions. It’s also much more feature-friendly, whereas with Twitter it’s pretty much “what you see is what you get.”
So is there anything I do like about Twitter?
The way I see it is, that while I may prefer Facebook, Twitter is geared towards a certain type of person and Facebook another.
Some people like the short and sweet style of messages that Twitter offers. It makes it easier to scan through what’s being said and weed out the interesting insights and links. For this reason, I think it more than deserves a place in the social media hall of fame.
I also believe it’s great for building relationships with other businesses. Not every other company is competition; rather contact with a company in a similar industry offers an opportunity to build bonds – bonds that could result in valuable and relevant reciprocal links, and even joint promotions.
But I still don’t have much hope for the future of Twitter…
Despite the positives that I honestly do believe Twitter offers, I’m also of the opinion that it won’t last. Facebook is constantly evolving, and despite an inevitable negative reaction from the public initially, Facebook’s history has shown that regardless of the changes it makes, it will continue to gather more members.
Twitter is competition for Facebook; thus Facebook is always looking to emulate what Twitter has and it does not.
Not to mention, the still somewhat preliminary potential of what Google Plus may come to be.
Please don’t get me wrong – I love my work and I’m fascinated with the potential of social media. I’m employed by a fantastic social media agency and together we do a brilliant job. I’m just a little bit of a sceptic at heart and can’t help but analyze the good and the possibly not-so-good in every marketing opportunity I cross.