Chapter 6. Microblogging Magic: How Twitter Can Transform Your Business

Twitter is a free microblogging service that allows users to communicate with one another using short text-based messages that can be a maximum of 140 characters in length. Twitter provides robust tools for sending and receiving updates on a variety of devices and through a plethora of tools. Launched in 2006, today Twitter has over 14 million accounts—with much of the growth attributed to celebrity adoption in the first quarter of 2009—and serves both professional and personal needs. Companies are using Twitter to tap into business prospects, influencers, and customers. As such, although it relates to topics discussed elsewhere in this book, Twitter deserves a chapter in itself.

A History of Twitter

The original goal of Twitter was to have users answer, “What are you doing?” in 140 characters or less. When the service launched in 2006, that is exactly what people were sharing. Users of the service provided updates about the food that they ate for dinner, the places they went, and the people they met. Initially perceived by most individuals as a tool that served no purpose and was a waste of time, Twitter’s original influencers realized that there was more to the service than just users talking about nonsensical happenings in their everyday lives. Twitter’s capability of connecting individuals seamlessly through so many devices created a sense of intimacy and closeness and forged incredible bonds. Individuals ...

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