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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Twitter Marketing by Esther Schindler, Brett Petersel

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A Bevy of Business Benefits

Imagine how businesses reacted when the telephone first became available in the late nineteenth century. The speed of communication must have been astonishing, because issues could be resolved so fast. Suddenly it was possible to maintain relationships—not just telegraph messages, our precursor to texting—over long distances. A business owner could contact a customer or supplier immediately (“Where are the buggy whips you promised us by this morning?”), instead of relying on the post office or in-person meetings.

The telephone was not immediately embraced, however. Only a subset of people and businesses could afford them (in 1900 there were about 600,000 phones in Bell’s telephone system; that number shot up to 5.8 ...

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