Recently Amy from Stewart Design posted about using Twitter as a business tool. As some of you might remember, I reluctantly entered the “Tweetosphere” a while back. It was only once I started following other people and engaging with them via Twitter that I realized the value.
People have asked for advice, tweeted about sites, events, or just generally interesting things. Of course there are other people who just tweet about drivel in their everyday lives (I fall into this category occasionally). But I have:
- been updated about the progress of a new product that I’m interested in (@outpostapp)
- gotten updates from the director of a company that I’m interested in (@ryancarson)
- been inspired
- received book recommendations for summer reading
These aren’t all business applications for Twitter, but they have been quick and easy ways to ask questions and get responses very quickly. Because Twitter has such a robust API, there are a ton of 3rd party applications that can be used for Twitter. I have recently installed the free Twitterific iPhone application (they also have desktop apps but they cost $15) and it works great. I also use TwitBin (for Firefox only) and SocialThing!.
I still don’t think Twitter is the best thing ever, but I do think it’s a good tool to use for the right things. I agree with some of Amy’s points about how a service business can (and should) use this tool. I think that informing the world of a restaurants specials is a great application. I will actually start looking for my favorite restaurants Twitter feeds, and if I don’t find them, I might be making some new business relationships with them.