new twitter spam

so i’ve stopped following the polite practise of autofollowing someone if they follow me on twitter. there is a lot of crap out there, and i suffer through enough already without having to plough through unneccesary spam. my modus operandi is to search through people’s bio, if that appeals and their first page of tweets appeal then i’ll follow. and then mildred bowler followed me today,
at first i thought it was relevant (she wrote something about search engines), but then looking a little further i saw that each tweet was random. and as i looked through the first couple of pages i saw that every so often they had a tweet about making money through taking surveys.

And there is the secret of it; interspersed with the random/normal tweets (which i’m assuming they suck in from different people’s twitter feeds), they plug in an ad of theirs. you’re not going to unfollow them because they’re a russian bride or some definite spam (and because of the wide cross section that they display, something will appeal every now and again). very so often someone will click on one of their surveys links and they make money. elegant spamming…

top brands on twitter

Nobility / NoblezaImage by . SantiMB . via Flickr

I saw a list of brands, mentions and their followers on twitter, and i found it pretty shocking.
starbucks at the top is quite impressive, 3.37MM mentions and Google with 307,342 followers is also OK.
But if you think about them in a little more detail I’d expect that half the Starbucks mentions are along the lines of “waiting in line at…”, so its not huge brand coversions by brand ambassadors that are happening. Similarly for Google 300,000 people following them isn’t that huge. Lots of people should be keen to have the pearls of wisdom from Google’s lips (or at least more than a third of those who want to hear what Ashton had for breakfast)

Simialrly after the top 5 you’re looking at 245,000 brand mentions and 1,000 followers for Amazon. This would lead me to believe that there isn’t a huge market for brands to be present on Twitter. Within 140 characters its perhaps too challenging to fit in descriptions of brand interactions, or else this is the kind of information that people dont share on Twitter.

This leads me to think that focussing on Twitter as a channel to be on your media plan may be somewhat premature. I think the things that Federated Media are doing with Twitter are pretty cool (having top CEO’s twitter through a specific sponsored channel), perhaps we’ll see more innovations like thisRelated articles by Zemanta

Twitter- the case study end

Twitter with Oprah 1209 tweetsImage by adria.richards via Flickr

I started on my refound Twitter adventure before Oprah kicked in with her first Tweet (though my experiment was arguably a more momentous occasion). I was determined to either discount Twitter completely or being a rabid twitaholic in my 6 week trial. Through this process I got swamped by spammers, got bored by the lack of tangible application, and have slowly started getting swayed.

I actually quite like Twitter after I weeded all the wheat from the chaff. I get to hang out with some family (@bridgetmcnulty) some old friends I don’t see often enough (@luapk ; @astepney ), some old colleagues (@nomonkeys, pebblebug ) and get to get some quick updates from people I respect within the industry (including some smart people I didn’t know existed)

In short, I use it and post once/twice a day, and give it a quick scan to see if there’s anything interesting going on. I think it becomes more useful when you post photos or updates from your phone as well, so I intend to do this (as I always enjoy looking at other people’s photos.)

At the beginning of putting some effort into twitter I didn’t think I’d enjoy it, but I enjoy it for the real time/small touch aspect of it. In addition I like the @ function, like Im- but not as disruptive. Like I said before, add your twitter below and I’ll follow you. I know Twitter is a divisive point, what do you think?Related articles by Zemanta

Twitter overload

As part of my Twitter refresh I had a chat over lunch to 2 people who I know (in meatspace) and communicate with on Twitter about how I wasn’t getting as much joy from Twitter as I would like to.

@no_monkeys had the following to share;
1) follow people you actually know
2) follow people who’s bio appeals to you (he’s an iPhone developer)
3) unfollow people who update 80 times a day
4) follow people who post in English

I think these are pretty relevant pointers, however I have exceptions to the rule already;
1) I’m interested in following marketing/web people, however every web geek worth their salt is on twitter, so there is a huge volume of crap if I use the rule of following anyone who has social media in their bio
2) unfollow people who update 80 times a day is a good rule. I will do it, except with people like guy Kawasaki (when does he find the time to continue tweeting relevant stuff)

That’s about it, I’ve added my cousin to my list, and removed a lot of other random people. Let’s see how this tweets me (sorry, I couldn’t resist)
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Twitter spam

In my ongoing attempt to become a memeber of the Twitterati, i have been approving all the people that are following me. there are a lot of random people with like 30,000 followers and not much to share. (aside from guy kawasaki who has almost too much good stuff to share).

i was interested to see how spam has come on to twitter, if you look at the below example it ticks a couple of spam blocks;
1) hot girl (fake picture)
2) not much interest in it (bad follower to following ratio)
3) a couple of post only
4) trying to bump up stock prices

needless to say this is the only one i’m not followingRelated articles by Zemanta

Twitter fixation

Image representing Twitter as depicted in Crun...Image via CrunchBase

My six weeks of twitter is happening and I’m firmly ensconced in my twitter life. I’ve been looking for people I know, modifying my twitter page (that picture is a bunny chow by the way), and reading furiously about it.
two quick observations;
1) people cleverer than me are really raving about twitter. Jason from mahalo has been offering $250k and then $500k to own the sponsored link for questions (he did the math that with his expected acquisition costs he would make money out of it)
2) Guy Kawasaki highlighted a great tool called Twitterhawk which allows you to isolate people who are talking about your product. You can then send an automated tweet to them advertising your product. This is basically a CPC/Adwords type version of using Twitter, it can be frequency capped to a certain person, so it seems to be a “fairly” relevant inobtrusive way of messaging to people.
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Twitter- the emperor’s new clothes?

Image representing Twitter as depicted in Crun...Image via CrunchBase

I have had a twitter subscription for about 18 months and I have 16 updates. At a rate of one a month that is pretty poor microblogging. I have always had the opinion that it isn’t for me. At one stage I had one member of my team in London and the rest in the Netehrlands and we tried to use it as a team building exercise, to make sure that everyone was in the loop with everyone’s activities, and build some team spirit in that way. This kind of fizzled out, but I’m not sure if it blame twitter or lack of motivation for that.
Twitter has received a lot of funding, interest from Facebook to purchase it and just recently the amount of people that I know using it has started to increase exponentially. This increase in interest is not limited to my social group, if you look at the search traffic for twitter it has had a huge boost since December (Nielsen in the US has seen 1382% UU growth from Feb 08- Feb 09). I think the relaunch of the new “twitter-style” Facebook has had an impact, and then there are a number of other pop-culture things (some rapper was live twittering whilst singing on the Jimmy Kimmel show). Its sneaking its way into the mainstream, and I’m nothing if not a slavish follower of trends, thus I think its perhaps time for a reappraisal…

I think the reasons it didn’t appeal to me are;
1) Its essentially a vain exercise, I’m not sure how many people want to know that I’m brushing my teeth.
2) Its very disruptive- by its nature it’s a consistent barrage of information , and it will break my concentration on whatever you’re focused on.
3) I didn’t have any friends, so if you’re chatting into the ether, it isn’t very rewarding
4) Most of all I haven’t received any tangible benefit from it; social, business or anything, so why put anything in.

I read (and twittered ) a great post from Tony from Zappo’s about why he uses twitter and why it is such a lifechanging force. I think that everything that Zappo’s does is pretty great (aside from not sending me their culture book when they said they would), so I’m going to devote the next six weeks or so to trialling twitter. Please leave your twitter and I’ll follow you, I’m @brendanmc
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twitter cookbook

so while the internet hums about microsoft buying a chunk of facebook that values Facebook at $15 billion, and Google setting up a rival conglomerate of social networks which will make your apps be able to be used across numerous networks, what do i want to talk about;
twitter cookbooks of course
now i can get my love of food in 140 swift characters- flawless


There’s a lot of new web treats out there at the moment; tagged, twitter, jaiku, Iminlikewithyou, and I find it difficult to keep up with them (in fact I find it difficult to keep my myspace up to date). Our team is split between the uk and the nertherlands, and it’s quite difficult for everyone to know what everyone else is up to. Also in terms of team building it’s stimulating to know what everyone is doing so projects can be focused. Which is where twitter has come in. I thought it was pretty useless when I heard about it, but it’s really quite easy and fun when you have it up and running. You can link it to your mobile or your instant message, and you simply send a message to your twitter friend to update what you’re up to. It’s like a text (140 characters) so it’s not wordy or complicated, you can simply dash it off. Correspondingly when someone else updates, you get a message from your twitter instant message.
It’s too early to judge it comprehensively, but I really like it so far, it’s not big, but it is clever, and seems to solve this problem. (I think it’ll be cool for setting up with friends too, an easy way to stay in touch)