Twitter – a waste of time?

December 7, 2009

I went to my first Tweetup on Friday night and had a ball. It was the first NZ National Tweetup and it was just fantastic. Over the past couple of months I have been developing relationships with some great people, and it was wonderful to meet so many of them face to face….and we had such fun!

For me, this was proof that Twitter is a fantastic tool for developing great relationships – personal and business.

I had never met, nor even talked to, any of the other Tweeps there so, yes, intially there was some hesitancy and shyness. However, once we discovered who the other one was, ie their Twitter name, it was like meeting an old friend.

Now, the reason I am writing this post is because of some of the reactions I got from friends when I told them that I was going, or had been to the Tweetup. “Oh, are you into that time-wasting stuff?” “Why would you get into that? Isn’t it just kid’s stuff?” “I can’t see how that could be useful for getting clients”

Firstly, I may have had the most gray hair of anyone there, but I don’t think the rest of them were kids, either. In fact, according to iStrategylLabs, whilst the biggest single group is the 18-34 age group, 52 % of people on Twitter are 35 and over. Secondly, whilst I am yet to actually get a client via Twitter, I am absolutely convinced that it has enormous potential for just that; getting clients. Dave Barnhart, says that Twitter is the most powerful prospecting tool on the planet!

People do business with people they trust. People learn to trust others by developing a relationship with them. With Twitter  you definitely develop relationships with people – Friday night was proof of that. From the start you could hardly hear yourself think because of everybody talking at once!

Whilst, the Tweetup was fantastic for deepening the relationships I had already developed, I truly believe that business relationships can be developed through online Tweeting alone!

I concede that being active on Twitter is time consuming; but it is not time wasting. So I will just have to more educate my friends some more, on the benefits of participating on Twitter for business.


7 Responses to “Twitter – a waste of time?”

  1. James Hancox Says:

    I credit Twitter with facilitating numerous positive changes for me this year. Not comprehensive, but:

    1 – I launched a charity this year. A chance conversation on twitter, led to 15 different professionals responding to offer assistance, services, or contacts with which to grow the concept… it took just two days for my idea to do from pipe-dream to realistic possibility. 3mths later we had a working organisations, and to date have helped other charities to the tune of ~$7000. Twitter win.

    2 – Launched my commercial photography business this year too. In under 6mths I’ve gained several *quality* clients with work for 2010, been involved in a Social Media world first (including an aerial shooting experience) that has lead to further work with same company, and have had numerous other opportunities presented I might otherwise have missed.

    3 – I’ve connected with other professional, top-of-game photographers and creatives, from all over the globe. People who would not have looked twice at me on the street due to status or time… I’ve been able to converse and learn from the top minds in my field… from my couch.

    I could go on… suffice to say I don’t feel my experience is atypical, having heard similar and better stories from many others.

    Twitter is just one Social Media tool… but it’s certainly the most conversational and immediate.

  2. Kate Says:

    I completely agree with you Jill!
    I am in a similar situation where my non-Twitter friends love to joke and smile about the time I spend on Twitter, and my goodness, you should have heard there guffaws, when I told them I was coming up to Auckland for the National Tweetup! (Which I wouldn’t have missed for the world!)
    However, I’m the one smiling, as my website stats and actual sales continue to rise, because this year I’ve cut back on my advertising budget, and focused my marketing through FREE social media.
    Also, as James says in his comment, one of the best things about the Twitter community, is their absolute willingness to share knowledge and resources, as a business owner this online help is invaluable!

    • jillporter Says:

      Thanks Kate. Wonderful to see that you have had such great results and with reducing your advertising spend. That’s what all savvy businesses should be doing!
      Promoting a “fee for service” business, the results are not necessarily that immediate or easy to spot, but I remain hugely optimistic that it will happen.
      Thanks for reading and I agree with both you and James that the support and business assistance associated with Twitter is success in itself!
      Hope it’s a beautiful day in sunny Nelson. You may not believe it after Friday but it is here too!!

  3. Justin Says:

    It was great to see you there Jill and meet you. While twitter might be great for client referrals etc its also widely used to support your current customers, offer advice and support and generally create stronger connections with current and potential customers.
    Its a great branding exercise to allow others to become more apart of your business, to share ideas and have some fun too.

    Thanks for your post;)


    • jillporter Says:

      You’re absolutely right, Justin. I see Twitter having a huge role in letting us support one another: both professionally and personally, existing or prospective clients, or just Twitter friends even if they have will never need your services at all.

      It was great to meet you too Justin and thanks for all your hard work organising it.

  4. […] Ultimately, the goal is to get in front of you prospect, customer or client.  I read this article yesterday about a Tweetup in New Zealand – I went to my first Tweetup on Friday night and had a ball. It was […]

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