Happy Anniversary!

by Kim Taylor

Twitter so kindly reminded me this morning that I’ve been tweeting for seven years now—SEVEN!  Twitter’s only been around a year longer than that, so I guess that makes me an early adopter.

TwitterI thought I’d use today’s anniversary to reflect on why I still regularly use the social network.

I’ll admit, when I was urged to give Twitter a try by a friend, who has always been a thought leader in the social space, I was skeptical.

So, what’s kept me coming back?

Relationships/Access:  I’ve always said this is my No. 1 reason for tweeting.  Journalists, brands, leaders are all just a tweet away.  Some are remarkably better than others at interaction, but those who do engage make sticking around worthwhile.

Breaking News/Info:  For me, there is no better source for breaking news than my Twitter feed.  In terms of information, I like to use Twitter as an RSS feed of sorts.  By following a variety of people, news outlets, blogs and brands, I feel I’m exposed to so much I would have to spend hours tracking down otherwise.

Promotion:  I like to keep things light on Twitter.  I believe people follow people, not organizations.  I share our company blogs and successes there, but I also mix in personal tweets.  We’re human, and humans aren’t all business all the time.  Sometimes it’s nice to see that a person has hobbies or interests outside of their career.

Hashtags/Search:  Although, I’ve admittedly abused the hashtag in Twitter for fun, I still find the hashtag incredibly useful.  Especially for monitoring buzz around conferences I can’t attend in person.  Conference-goers are really good at getting those useful sound bites and sharing them with their followers—that’s Twitter gold if you’re paying attention.

The search function in Twitter has gotten so much better over the years.  It’s a go-to resource for me to find that extra layer of goodness on a topic, brand or person.  Did you know you can search by date range, location, or even by particular user account?  The options are endless.

So, do you Tweet?  I’d love to know why/why not—share some of your reasons in the comments.

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