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Archive for December, 2009

Why you can’t base twitter success and expertise on stats

Wednesday, December 16th, 2009

twitterHave you noticed recently the prolific increase in twitter based stats and reporting type websites ?

Have you noticed lots of people boasting about their position and status amongst their peers?

Have you noticed ’some’ social media experts using these sites as proof of their so called expertise?

Remember the saying ‘all that glitters is not gold’?

I’ll let you into a secret: On the whole these sites mean jack, zilch, zero, nout. And I say that being in the top 5 of one! But does that make them useless for everything or am I simply throwing the baby out with the bathwater?

Well no it doesn’t and no I’m not. Like many things in life it’s a case of ‘right tool for the job’ something that I believe in greatly. Now coming back to the issue at hand, that of folk using them to justify expert status.

The thing that actually counts is the thing that is almost impossible to measure

The trouble with this social media stuff is the thing that actually counts is the thing that is almost impossible to measure and gauge and that is engagement, interaction, meaningful relationships, true followers. lets face it numbers can be crunched and twisted to make anything look good, politicians do it every day!

For example: The number of people that follow someone (taken in isolation) is no real hard and fast gauge of how well you or anyone else for that matter doing because of several factors:

  1. It’s easy to gain 1000’s of followers by simply following 1000’s and hope they follow you back
  2. Your followers could be made of of a load of spam followers, bots and porn type followers. All of them meaningless
  3. It doesn’t take into account the level of interaction with your followers
  4. It doesn’t take into account the quality of your tweets
  5. It doesn’t take into account the value that your followers place on your tweets (if people are re-tweeting you)
  6. There’s no way to gauge what your followers truly think about you (unless you mind read)

Now some of these things are absolutely impossible to ascertain unless you interview every follower and review every single tweet and try and rate its value using some sort of predefined scale.

Useful for what?
So having established that these sites that rank lists of people into order actually mean nothing what can they be of use for? Well in the case of you can find tweeters in your local area. You can see how active they are and use your own judgement as to whether they are worth following.

Some sites you can pick up stats about yourself that might give you an idea of how effective your tweets are by looking at the audience saturation level. In other words how many potential eyes has your tweet reached by others re-tweeting what you’ve said. Also a good indicator as to whether what you’re saying is of value.

Twitter based statistical websites include:,,, to name but a few. There’s even one that pertains to gauge whether someone has more positive comments than negative said about them ( I tried it, it’s fun but essentially rubbish)!

The general rule is take it all with a pinch of salt and have a bit of fun. Learn to learn what is good and what is not and when a tool is useful and when it’s just a gimmick. Hopefully in 2010 we’ll start to see some more powerful analytical type tools that go some way towards being meaningful.

And remember; 56.8% of all statistics are made up!

As ever your comments are really welcome, please leave them below.

How Twitter has Successfully Worked for Us.

Monday, December 14th, 2009

twitterWe’ve been social media users for as long as I can remember, in fact it’s fair to say that this business has been built solely on the back of various social media channels. This said we only started to harness the power of twitter no more than 3 months ago although to be fair the methods of approaching twitter are the same as any other social media tool it’s just a case of learning the little idiosyncrasies.

I admit it was a time thing that was most off putting, how was I supposed to shoe horn in one more thing to my working day? But, one day I read an article and the last parting comment was this:

The train is leaving the station with or without you

This was a general reference to social media but in particular twitter as that is the forerunner at the moment. The next day I was on that train brandishing first class tickets yelling at the driver to take off the brakes and get this train moving full steam ahead. The one thing I can say without doubt is ‘why didn’t I start tweeting earlier?’.

Twitter success
It takes a while to get established and in the first few weeks getting stuck in and finding your feet does take up a lot of time but we’re confident we’re taking the right approach to our tweeting (open to opinion though) because of our achievements with it so far in about 6 weeks and 600 or so posts.

So in no particular order of importance we have: Found 2 new suppliers, have been invited to show at an exhibition (which went very well), am talking to one contact to do some consultancy for them, have been invited to guest blog with good exposure, had the opportunity to quote for work (2 largish contracts so far) we otherwise wouldn’t of, connected with people who have been asking about our service that we otherwise would of missed and we’ve actually won some work!

But maybe more importantly we’ve forged some fantastic relationships with people and anticipate doing more deals within the next month or so and all as a direct result of twitter alone. All within approx 8 weeks, although to be fair the productive parts have been in the last month or so.

We’re firmly on that train now, are you? If you are looking for help and/or advice regarding the use of Twitter for your brand or indeed social media in general then do get in touch via our contact page. We can provide your business with various social media based products from twitter backgrounds up to training seminars/workshops.

Your comments are really welcome, please leave them below.