Twitter relevance has come into question recently. A recent Yahoo! study revealed that 50 percent of the most popular and influential tweets come from a mere twenty thousand users (Yahoo! Research, 2011). Though that may sound like a lot of users, consider the fact that as of the end of 2012, there were well over five hundred million Twitter users in the Twitterverse. With so many accounts and so few original and influential messages going on, is Twitter still as important as it once was? What is Twitter good for?
What Is Twitter?
Twitter is currently the second most popular social media platform worldwide. Unlike Facebook or LinkedIn, where you can post lengthy status updates and content, Twitter is a “microblogging” site, meaning that the information you send can only be sent in short messages that are up to 140 characters in length. While some users and experts have criticized Twitter for it’s less than generous character limit, others have praised the social media site for providing a place for users to send out quick, succinct blasts of information that are straight and to the point.
Retweeting Is All the Rage
Though there may only be some odd twenty thousand users who are posting those influential original tweets, a large amount of the estimated fifty million Twitter users who are logging into this platform social media on a daily basis are then taking those tweets and retweeting them. If you have an interesting tweet on Twitter, then there’s a good chance that it’ll catch on like wildfire and quickly spread across the web.
The Best Conversation Platform
Twitter relevance is perhaps the most obvious when it comes to global engagement in social media. Facebook conversations are nearly impossible to access if you aren’t a “friend” of someone. Pinterest is more for pictures than conversations, and Google+ has yet to really catch on. Twitter aside, no other centralized location allows you to quickly run searches for keywords and hashtags that will help reveal exactly what the 411 is on a given topic.
It has never been as easy to reach individuals, both known and unknown to you, than through a tweet. With a simple “@” message, you can send a message directly to another Twitter follower. Though you may not always get a response, you’ll be surprised by just how often that celebrity you love will respond to you, and you never know—they may even start following you, too.
An Improved Flow of Information
What gives this social media network top mark in terms of relevance is the fact that Twitter has vastly transformed the flow of information. The entire Twitter community quickly determines what’s newsworthy and what’s not, which has left many experts describing a journalist as simply trying to chase and keep up with news rather than finding it.
For those who still question Twitter relevance, we ask: where can you find a better social media platform that can bring together communities in one single spot, while also offering the unique ability to share information with millions of people in mere seconds, and that encourages open dialogue with virtually anyone who owns a Twitter account?
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