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How Twitter Is Changing Business Blogging

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Twitter, Link Sharing, and the Evolution of Business Blogs

Blogs Evolve More Quickly than Humans!

Blogs Evolve More Quickly than Humans

 

Twitter is the big social media marketing story of 2009. Within the online marketing community, practically everyone is using Twitter and writing about it. A year from now, I believe hundreds of thousands of mainstream organizations will be using Twitter for all sorts of marketing and customer service activities.

Twitter is just too convenient and powerful not to be used.

Twitter is already having an impact on business blogging. Here’s what I’ve noticed – what changes have you seen?

Links. Twitter is a handy way to share links. As a result, I’m seeing less emphasis on “link posts” in blogs. The impact? Business blogs may not be as rich a source of inbound links as they once were. If that’s the case, seo and content optimization strategy will move in other directions to acquire inbound links.

Traffic. All these inter-blog links generated a great deal of traffic. But now, as links are being shared on Twitter (and a host of other social media sites), serious business bloggers must have a Twitter presence. Twitter participants are more inclined to share links with their followers and others within the Twitter community. The impact? No business blog is an island. A blog is a base of operations for marketing, and must be actively connected with other types of interactive sites.

Content. Based on the shift in link sharing methods, a blog post has to be extremely strong to merit inclusion in a blog “link post”. Similarly, a weak blog post has little chance of standing out on Twitter because of all the link noise. The impact? Quality content becomes even more important, which in the long run will make business blogs more respected and valuable as a source of information and influence. This is excellent news for organizations looking for a way to extend their brands, strengthen ties with customers, and attract new ones.

Over to You

How do you see Twitter changing the business blog landscape? I’d love to hear your comments here … or, hey – we can connect on Twitter and talk there.

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20 Responses to How Twitter Is Changing Business Blogging

  1. Debra, Thank you for your comment. Your analysis of the traffic stats is absolutely outstanding. (I just Tweeted it!) While there’s no doubt Twitter users are heavily tech savvy, I track a couple industries (including packaging) that are not necessarily cutting edge. Every week I’m seeing a material increase in activity. How Twitter conversations will change is a good question. I wonder. If everybody starts tweeting post after post, people may start tuning everything out. I think Twitter needs a better way to organize followers based on keywords. That way, you could browse for posts by topic, scanning your follows by category. If there’s an easy way to do that now, please let me know.

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  3. Great post, Brad. It’s a natural leap that bloggers are using Twitter for publicity and awareness-raising. The very nature of Twitter itself is so viral, and the adopters are still heavily tech-savvy. Hitwise released a study in February analyzing downstream clicks from Twitter which showed that Twitter drove traffic to blogs about 7% of the time. You can read the study here: http://weblogs.hitwise.com/us-heather-hopkins/2009/03/where_to_from_twitter.html, and my analysis of that here: http://www.communityorganizer20.com/2009/03/16/how-twitter-drives-traffic-to-social-networks-and-blogs/

    How do I think Twitter drives the business blog landscape? I find that I gather more and more of my news from Twitter and less from the blog RSS feeds that I subscribe to. I think of twitter as a secondary RSS feed of sorts. That said, I believe we’ll see decreased RSS feed rates as people turn to Twitter for their news and analysis. The impact? As you said, bloggers are going to have to offer great content, conversation, and “shout” their latest posts to get the traffic and notice. How will that change twitter conversations is the next question?

    FYI, I got to this post because I follow you on Twitter and happened to see your announcement of a new post!

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  5. Randy, Thank you for reading, tweeting, and commenting. You are a keen observer of online media and your support is greatly appreciated. Blogs, which are now common among in all sectors, were considered almost bizarre only a few years ago. I think a year from now Twitter will be fully mainstream. What do you think?

  6. Brad:
    Some great information here. Brief – yet to the point. Hopefully more businesses will engage with Twitter.
    Randy

  7. Hi Ulla, I don’t think we get into as much depth on Twitter as we do in commments – for obvious reasons. And definitely, in my view anyway, comments are as important and sometimes more important content elements as the post itself. Depends on the blogger’s goals to what extent comments are cultivated.

  8. One question I am thinking about: Do we have discussions on twitter too like we have them in the comments section of blogs? I often think discussions about a blog post are equally important or even more important than the post itself…

  9. Hi Andrew, Your ask a superb question, one which I am totally unqualified to answer. It does seem that there are many non-business Tweeters out there, and people using Facebook for non-business purposes must outnumber business oriented users. But I spend so little time in that landscape it’s very hard to say how those folks are connecting, let alone where connections are heading. Twitter is so powerful and flexible, it would seem to be a natural place for personal bloggers. Have you given the matter any thought?

  10. Brad,

    The blogging landscape seems to be in a state of constant evolution these days (as indeed no doubt has been the case with the broader social media landscape), and Twitter, perhaps along with Facebook, seems to be the primary beneficiary of the current direction of this process. No doubt as you say, this is having, and will continue to have, a very significant impact upon the nature of business blogging.

    One question of interest – do you think your comments here apply equally to the personal blogging landscape, or do you think that Twitter is having a different impact upon the business blogging landscape as opposed to the non-business blogging landscape?

  11. I am one of those non-business tweeters. For me, twitter has been and still is a source of links to interesting web posts or interesting developments concerning social media. I have developed the habit of reading my rss feeds in one window and publishing the links of interesting posts in my tweetdeck window, in order to realize a constant give and take.
    Of course there’s also a kind of social connecting going on, saying “hi, how are you” and “Weather’s great here in Berlin”. It’s like knitting the web. Discussions however I see more in the comment sections of the blogs I am following, because there’s more space for words here.

  12. Ulla, The “hi, how are you” aspect of Twitter is its most charming quality, I think. I love your “knitting on the web” description, too – so accurate.

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  14. Hi Brad,

    On an overall level, I have not given the matter of the impact of Twitter on ‘personal’ blogs a great deal of thought.

    My completely uneducated guess would be that the impact to which you refer of links starting to be shared more frequently on Twitter would have some effect on the way in which those in the personal blogosphere would need to operate in order to generate a sizeable volume of traffic on a consistent basis, if indeed that is what they want to do.

    But I would have absolutely no idea about whether or not the magnitude of the effect of Twitter on personal blogs is as significant as it is for business blogs.

    I have probably told you this already, but on a personal level, I did give some thought toward the objective of trying to establish a presence on Twitter – primarily for the purpose of expanding the readership of my blog. The main reason that I haven’t done that to date was due to fear of time actually spent on Twitter taking me away from activities like preparing discussions for my own blog and contributing to discussions and debates on other blogs.

  15. Hi Brad,

    Very informative to someone like me who is still struggling to understand “how to build followers (in a business sense) who really want to follow my business?

    Thank you for sharing

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