To Tweet or Not to Tweet

You’ve heard the stats. With over 800 million users on Facebook, and 140 million users on Twitter, you know you should be reaching clients and customers via social media. But are you ready to make the jump to Twitter? Let’s scratch the surface.

*Note: All of the information presented assumes you have a working knowledge of both Facebook and Twitter. If not, go here for Facebook and here for Twitter for a quick once-over.

The tortoise and the hare

One of the biggest differences you’ll find between Facebook and Twitter (besides the character count limit on Twitter) is the speed in which their respective worlds turn. Facebook is the tortoise – slow, steady, and a higher chance that your subscribers/fans will take the effort to read your posts if it showed up on their newsfeed when they weren’t around. Facebook also has a layout more conducive for users to explore your past content, and with the new timeline layout (assuming it will be around for awhile), you can add in past milestones and events (check out what Verizon did on their page, both for the educational value and the amusement of seeing cell phones from ten years ago).

Twitter, on the other hand, is a fast paced conversation. Twitter accounts of every shape, size, creed and color release information the nanosecond it occurs. Twitter glorifies quotable quotes and stunning facts. A Twitter user often follows dozens, even hundred or thousands of other users, and doesn’t (shouldn’t) have the time and energy to go back and read everything that’s happened since the last time they logged on. And why should they? It’s going to be old news by the time they get on there anyway.

Pick and choose

So what do you put on Facebook and what do you put on Twitter? Should you even have an account?

The short answer to that is yes to Facebook, and maybe to Twitter. Facebook is an extension of your website. (For some small business owners, like those in direct-sales, it may be a cost-effective replacement for a website). Facebook offers a fabulous chance to communicate with your customers and gives them an easy method for sharing your great status updates, photos, specials and more.

Twitter, on the other hand, should be reserved for those of you who plan to either:

Be the expert in your field and offer tips and tricks to your followers, OR

Build a strong personal relationship with your followers, OR

Keep up with and weigh in on trending topics adding in the scope from your industry

And, what you must always make sure that you are doing is simple: log on and tweet!

The final word

Confused yet? Think of it this way:

Facebook: Calm, friendly, newsletter-type information
Twitter: Fast-paced, quippy, up-to-the-minute newsflashs

Before you commit to Twitter, think about what your customers want. Not sure what that is, or still have more Twitter questions? Hit the start button to chat with us!

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4 Comments. Leave new

  • Lisa Maubach
    May 14, 2012 9:37 am

    I definitely agree. We love to use our company’s Facebook page to announce new event information and display pictures. We drive people to our Facebook page for the latest updates and to know what is really going on in our world here at Stephens Auditorium.

    One could say we do the same thing with Twitter, but in a whole different mindset. We will still announce important information, but instead of leaving bulky posts and giving our followers tons of information to read through, we like to “tease” them with a short summary and allow them to follow the link if they wish. Our favorite thing about Twitter is it gives our company more of a “personality” through small, conversational tweets.

    • Lisa, yes! Twitter is great for giving your company a personable voice that allows readers to connect with you on entirely different level. Similar info, different delivery.

      And, who wouldn’t want to know what’s going on at Stephens? We love it!

  • Deborah Martinez
    May 15, 2012 11:03 am

    I think it is also important to know not to “overdo” Facebook and Twitter. The number one reason why people or businesses do not have a social media account is “because it takes too much time.”

    This is the biggest misconception for social media. You should only have to make one solid post a day on any of your social media sites, and remember you don’t need to make a BIG Splash to make a difference.

    Provide value with content, and you will have success with your social media. Good luck!

    • We couldn’t agree more, Deborah. Too much, and you run a huge risk of people ignoring you for information overload! Quality over quantity applies to social media in a big way.

      As for social media taking too much time, when you consider the apps out there that allow you to schedule tweets and posts way in advance so you never have to worry about it, it’s hardly a time consumer at all. Of course, if you use those apps, you have to make sure you’re interacting with any commenters in a timely manner, so be sure to have alerts set up so you can log-in when need be!


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