Is that how you feel? At one time, I had the same feeling. Didn’t see what the big deal was. If I wanted to say something I wanted more than 140 characters to work with. But as anyone that works in website design, I had to at least explore something that was so popular and has such a large audience. Was I missing something? Unfortunately, I must admit I was missing something. But I am man enough to fess up and admit my error.
After trying Twitter recently (follow us at http://Twitter.com/foundbydesign), I have found that Twitter has a lot to offer, and it all depends on what you are seeking. For my own purposes, Twitter was never going to be purely social. I don’t sit around wondering what exactly my friends are doing at this exact moment. In too many ways, that can just be TMI! No, my focus was on communication, greater exposure and SEO for my own website. I wanted to be able to communicate with current clients, prospective clients and maybe other associates within my field. I also wanted to gain further exposure to new groups of people and to pick up additional links to my website for SEO purposes. And what I have found is that Twitter has met these needs very well!
Communication using Twitter is rather easy. Yes, you are limited to 140 characters, but you can easily create a full on article on your website and link back to it from your Twitter account. But it is also great for quick announcements, updates and answering simple questions. I have used Twitter to announce our new Free Wordpress Themes we have made available for Wordpress self-hosted users. It seems to be a simple way to just quickly update people on what’s what.
Gaining greater exposure for your website is something I hoped for, but wasn’t sure if I’d see. As of this article’s posting, I am only up to 134 followers, but I already have an audience I would not have had any other way. Sure, some of the followers are there only to get me to follow them, but there are a number of people that are following my “tweets” that are in a greater position to shed light on my corner of the web… so that spurs me on to create great content! Besides, with the exposure of Twitter, we have already seen great response to the downloads of our free Wordpress themes, primarily promoted using Twitter!
One thing I did not know going in was that Twitter add a “nofollow” tag to each of your “tweets” so you do not get any real credit for links, particularly with Google. So as far as SEO went, I was beginning to think that maybe this would be a place I did not see anything. Wrong! Twitter’s “tweets” are also broadcast using RSS feeds and are then republished on a number of services which do provide links back to your website. Using my Google alerts, I just found that TweetMeMe.com was aggregating my Twitter items and providing dofollow links back to my individual URLs within my site that I was linking to! How cool! I am sure there are more like this, and look forward to getting future alerts!
In summary, it appears that Twitter may yet be a great tool to use for the promotion of a website. Whether its building a social following or simply to have another place to post your articles to, you will most likely find a positive outcome to using Twitter. I have found Twitter to be useful for communication, website exposure and greater optimization using links. What have you found Twitter to be useful for?