Is Twitter A Waste Of Time?

Tami Wessley
Posted by Tami Wessley on October 11, 2012

That question was posed to us yesterday by a client and it’s a very good one. Our answer, of course, was "no," and to bolster our argument, we Googled "Is Twitter a waste of time?" Results on page #1 included sources like the venerable Forbes and Pew Research, both of whom answered the question with a resounding “no."

There's a caveat here: Twitter is not a waste of time if you're using it correctly. In fact, it's of critical importance if you're using it to engage prospects and point them to your content. If you're using it to talk about your caffeine craving or cute things your kid did, that's another story.

Here are some other valuable uses for this social network:

Twitter For Monitoring

When clients show reluctance to use Twitter to promote their business and website, we remind them that there are very likely others out there on the network talking about their product or service. You want to be in on those conversations! It’s essential to share your brand message and monitor/engage in conversations where your brand is mentioned – good or bad. By monitoring online conversations, potential unhappy customer rants can be blunted and even turned around. Because Twitter and other social media allow nearly real-time communication with customers and prospects, it can be an invaluable tool for Sales and for Customer Service.

Twitter For The Press

For businesses that include PR and editorial coverage in their overall marketing strategy, Twitter is an important outlet to consider. Pew Research was recently quoted as saying, “If searching for news was the most important development of the last decade, sharing news may be among the most important of the next." Most of our media contacts – for both trade and consumer media – actively use Twitter for story ideas and fact-gathering.

Here are a few Twitter facts that may surprise you:

User Demographics & Behavior

  • Twitter has 517 million users worldwide; 141.8 million are in the US
  • More than half of active Twitter users follow companies, brands or products
  • 83% of Twitter users use it to learn about or provide an opinion about products/services
  • 79% of US Twitter users are more likely to recommend brands they follow with 67% more likely to buy those brands
  • 63% of Twitter users tweet at least once a week with nearly 20% tweeting more than once a day
  • 64% of Twitter users are 25-54, 33% are 25-34
  • 64% of Twitter users have a college degree or higher

B2B Marketing Impact

  • Companies using Twitter average 2x more leads/mo than those that don’t
  • 63% of marketers say Twitter is useful, important or critical to their business
  • 75% of B2B companies are likely to use Twitter (compared to 49% of B2C)

If you’re new to Twitter or could use some help getting the most out of this and other powerful social media tools, download our free "Social Media Optimization Playbook" now.

Social Media Optimization Playbook

Topics: Social Media

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