I have received numerous comments on my Twitter posts with Rainers saying "I don't get it", to "I just generated my first Twitter deal!" Some of you asked me what I get from Twitter. Today I came across an article by Jason Hiner from a Twitter_Tips tweet that put my personal experience into focus: Sanity Check: The four stages of a typical Twitter user. How long you stay in each of these stages varies from user to user. Where are You?
Stage 1 Confusion and Indignation. This is certainly where I began. I logged on and, being obcessive, read every word or every post I followed. Soon I began to be frustrated as this is a different media than email. What really got me to thinking about Twitter was a Rainer I respect, Debra Drummond, Michigan Moves Real Estate, who did a series of posts on Twitter for beginners. Shortly after that, Active Rain radio had a program that grabbed my attention featuring Rich Jacobson, Paul Chaney, Kim Wood, and Jeremy Blanton called Twitter Gone Wild. I have gone back and listened to it several times! Now Active Rain radio features Twitter Tuesday Radio with different guests. Are you guys aware of what a great resource we have right here on Active Rain to make Twitter an effective tool?
Stage 2: The first "Aha!" moment The second week I was on Twitter Baton Rouge had it's first Tweetup. I went and met 20 people I would never have connected with anywhere else! Then that week I needed a photo editor to do a feature my photo editors couldn't handle, so I sent a Twitter to my 40 followers. Aha! Two of them (LSU techies) sent me links to free software that did just what I needed. I was sold that this had value if I could just figure out how to manate it with the 1000 other things I had to do each day! About week 2 into my experience I began to notice that news about Baton Rouge appeared before it even hit the tv or newspapers. For example, closing of roads or local events and activities in the area. I began to use websites like Twilert and Nearbytweets and LocalTweeps to find local Twitterers. They begin to follwo Twitter_Tips and localtweeps and social media experts like Mashable and other Twitter learning tools.
Stage 3: Remembering to tweet Here a user begins to check more often. They find news links and local and special interest groups to connect with. They begin to find information and think "I'll post that on Twitter". Others begin to follow their psots. They begin to interact with friends, and national interest groups, and news. When they are creating blogs and find other news, they begin in think "I'll post that on Twitter". I created a "Technology Blog" and included articles by myself and others to help agents get into Twitter and other technology to improve their business. Here the Twitter user is primarily using Twitter.com
Stage 4: Thinking in 140 characters By now the user is a daily Twitterer. Posts come daily or more frequently. They learn tricks like using url shorteners such as "is.gd" or "tinyurl" to shorten URL's so they can share information in 140 characters or less. Now their sphere of people they follow is expanding and those following them is expanding too. They are hooked on Twitter and begin to look for an iPhone or Blackberry to more easily interact with Twitter during the day. They link to Twitter improving tools like Twitpic so they can enrich their Tweets for their followers. Some create and share music or videos. They move "out of the box" and begin to interact with humorous posts, self-transparancy posts, and begin to embrace their online presence. This is the stage where they add Twitter inks to their FaceBook pages, their blogs, and websites. They Tweet at events and take pictures of restaurants and events they attend and post an ongoing stream of their life. They associate with Social Media experts like Paul Chaney here on Twitter. They join Active Rain groups like Social Media Marketing and Twitter and others.
What stage of Twitter are you in????