I’ve long been an avid user of Facebook and LinkedIn. These platforms made intuitive sense to me, both for their utility in business and their ability to help people network and make meaningful connections.
But for some reason, I just couldn’t get into Twitter. What could you really say in only 140 characters? And who is actually reading my tweets anyway?
At some point, I decided it was time to delve into exploring the potential of Twitter. And now, I am a believer with a totally new respect and admiration for this platform.
In addition to the hours of entertainment and important news it can provide, I discovered that Twitter is also a fantastic tool for entrepreneurs that can aid the growth of their businesses.
Here’s four things I love about Twitter:
1. Constant stream of information
Twitter is like a never-ending stream of content and information. Think of it as one big, global conversation where it’s normal to walk up to anyone and talk to them about anything. Millions of people and organizations from around the world tweet out opinions, news, videos, photos and more on a daily basis. With about 6,000 tweets being tweeted per second, the information is endless.
Although Twitter can appear to be a mass bombardment of clutter, it doesn’t have to be overwhelming -- in fact the platform is easy to navigate and users can easily manage what sort of content and information gets priority in their feeds. The platform’s advanced search capabilities allow users to search for relevant information through hashtags, trending topics, handles, or their newsfeeds.
2. Updates in real-time
Because users often share updates about things as they happen, Twitter is the fastest way to watch current events unfold. It’s often more real-time than any other form of media, capturing the thoughts and feelings of individuals in the moment.
For example, I followed #blizzard2016nyc as New York's recent snowstorm raged on. This allowed me to see photos and read first-hand, eyewitness accounts about conditions on the ground, which let me know exactly when it was safe to venture out.
More than perhaps any other social network, Twitter makes it easy to listen to what is going on in the world. And the better you listen, the more effective you can be when jumping into the conversation. By monitoring hashtags, you can be up on the latest deals, product updates, industry conferences and events, trending topics of conversation, campaigns, and product rollouts. Twitter helps you to stay current, relevant, and in the know.
On the Internet, relevancy is everything, and Twitter empowers entrepreneurs with real-time updates that can help them stay informed about their industries, their target audiences, and their competition.
3. Easy access to influencers
Twitter is the party where everyone is invited. Presidential candidates, influencers, business people, celebrities, and other prominent figures engage with their followers on a regular basis. For example, Katy Perry, nick-named the “queen of Twitter,” because she has the largest Twitter following of anyone in the world, regularly engages followers with humor, often replying to and retweeting her fans.
Twitter makes it easy to directly approach influencers. It’s the one place where not only is it not weird, but it’s actually encouraged to strike up conversations with strangers about topics of interest. Twitter is a great place for contacting mentors, seeking advice from role models, asking founders for their opinions, and getting influencers to share product information or reviews.
4. Endless networking opportunities
All social networks open the door to new connections, but Twitter is more open than Facebook and LinkedIn. Twitter is now the place where the “chattering class” actually chatters. It’s the dominant medium where the conversation now happens.
This is especially great for entrepreneurs. Before Twitter, influencers and organizations were siloed from the masses. To gain access to an influencer or an investor, you needed to wait in line and have an appointment. Now, entrepreneurs can easily find and communicate with new clients, partners, colleagues, mentors or their next rockstar employee. In fact, 47 percent of recruiters surveyed by Jobvite in 2015 said they used Twitter to find talent.
So, don’t wait like I did. Dive into the conversation and start tweeting! With a little bit of patience, you’ll be surprised at the connections that can be made and the impact you can have on others.
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