When I first heard of Twitter a couple years ago I thought "Nobody will ever use that!" Apparently I was wrong, as Twitter has become the "Next big thing" in the social media arena and is poised to outpace Facebook in the next year. I get asked a lot from our clients what Twitter is, so here’s a brief explanation to the non-tweeters out there.
Twitter is basically a micro blog. So instead of writing a long, thought out post, you can keep it short and sweet. In fact, you have to, as each "tweet" is only allowed 140 characters. You can tweet text, links and even photos and you can do it from your computer and even from your cell phone.
So why tweet? Good question. It’s a great way to let friends and family know what you’re up to and share the little things that happen in your day. Often people use it for sharing a random funny thought or a great website link or a photo of their kids. Professionally it’s a great way to find other people with similar interests and learn from them and share things you’ve found to be helpful too. Often people use Twitter for posting questions to friends and colleagues as well.
Recently Twitter added the ability to search tweets. This is huge. Now you can see trends of what people are talking about right this second, unlike searching on Google and finding pages that were indexed days or even weeks ago. It’s like a giant, world-wide chat room. For example, your wife may be a huge American Idol Fan (This is all hypothetical, of course). You could search on the term "Idol" and find what a bazillion other people are talking about right that second regarding American Idol. And it’s usually pretty amusing.Will Twitter replace Google….I doubt it, but it does have it’s place for searching for things that are very time sensitive, like news.