Thursday, January 15, 2009

No Twitter Please

Can someone please tell me what a micro blog actually does to help build equity in a brand? Can anyone explain why we all care so much about who is using the bathroom at what given time, beyond our own perverse voyeuristic reasons, such as killing time at a job we don’t like much to begin with? To be clear, I have nothing against Twitter, and all the buzz around it as a innovative Web app. Twitter as a technology is very interesting to say the least, but I believe it not only does not help you make money online, it might impair your chances if used in certain ways.

Twitter as I understand it works like an instant message application with a twist of emailing and text messaging for good measure. The fundamental problem with such a blended and abbreviated mode of communication is that it is too short to accomplish anything worth communicating when it comes to your business, yet too long to be ignored. If you are attempting to build a brand, does it really help to share with your customers that you had tacos for lunch?
Would I be more apt to buy something from Trump or Diddy if I read their Twitters and found out either one of them just rented Indiana Jones on DVD? The answer is a resounding no. What could someone write on Twitter that would get me to buy something from them more so than if it were written in an email or on a Web site?

All this deep thinking begs the question, what, in a business / internet marketing sense of the word, does Twitter really do to help build a brand? This is a question I’ve struggled with as I drag my digital feet in signing up for such services. I’ve already deactivated my Facebook account for reasons that should be reserved for another post. A question I can answer about Twitter is this, what can Twitter do to ruin a brand? It can expose all those human sides of people that make their Brands less elite, less prestigious, and in some cases offensive to those that value it. Just heard a funny joke about people that live in California? Don’t share the joke on Twitter unless you want to offend and possible lose all your California based customers that happen to read it. Control is in the most valuable currency of the information age, and I for one like to have as much of it as I can when it comes to building a brand online.

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