Facebook and Twitter. Oh, ya, they’re everywhere. Turn TV on, you’ll be hearing “Please follow us on Twitter, blah blah”. Walking on the street, you see a billboard sign with a Twitter address. And almost all your friends , co-workers and family are probably already on Facebook. Thanks to mainstream media and social networking obsessions, both Facebook and Twitter enjoy phenomenal growth this year. To put it in perspective, If Facebook were a country, its population is bigger than Brazil (200 millions), that’s the 5th largest country in the world. Twitter’s growth is also stunning. Twitter population is already reaching to 50 millions.
I’ve been a Facebook user for a couple years now. And like many others, I actually signed up Twitter the same time and abandoned it quickly. But I “re-discovered” it again early this year. Back then, I was confused as to why I need yet another service, like Twitter, if I was just as happy with Facebook already. As I use both services regularly, it becomes clear to me that they can be both co-exist, and offer different kind of benefits for consumer and business.
As you join Facebook, the instant gratification is undeniable. Getting constant stream of personal news, pictures, videos that are very relevant to you would definitely keep you coming back to this site. On the hand, as you join Twitter, it is harder to find an instant gratification. As you finish your registration, Twitter offers you to follow many Twitter power accounts which include a few celebrities, news organizations. But that’s getting old pretty fast. It took me a while to build my network of people. A typical user comment would be like this: “I don't understand the popularity of Twitter. Am I so self-important, self-absorbed and so smug that I need to tell people what I'm doing 20 times a day? And truth be told, I don't care what others are doing either. I have enough going on in my life”. Higher retention rate is a one of the most important requirement to keep the service growing.
Could Twitter still grow at healthy rate? You bet. The crux of the problem, in my opinion, is Twitter model does not represent real life model. At first glance, it seems that everybody is speaking, no one is listening. Try to explain this concept to your mom, she would probably think this is crazy. However, the brilliance of this model is that once you pass that point, Twitter can be used in many (new) scenarios.
I put together a presentation that explains Twitter for Facebook user. I hope it explains while Twitter is a still-hard- to-understand concept; there are many benefits once you use it regularly. Enjoy.