Twitter is doing it right!

Recently, Twitter has been undertaking quite a lot of changes in the quest of becoming more of a mainstream social media platform and increase its user base. The last two weeks have seen three very important developments which, in my opinion, will help push Twitter to the next level. Automatic link shortening, a new photo sharing service, and an exciting integration with Apple’s mobile operating system iOS 5 are very strong statements about the company’s ambition.

Link shortening made easy


There have been plenty of services that offered link shortening, but unless you were using a third-party application like TweetDeck (which is already owned by Twitter), the process has not been as smooth as with this new update. With it Twitter now offers its customers the ability to share more content faster without worrying too much about the character limitation.

(Read more about the new link-shortener here)

Photo sharing

In a partnership with the photo sharing website Photobucket, Twitter now offers it’s own service that will probably make tools like “yfrog” and “twitpic” obsolete. With a click of a button you can easily add your photo and a description with it. No need to go to an external website. And the photos will now be displayed in the sidebar, next to the stream.

(Get a hands-on view of the new photo sharing tool here)

iOS 5 integration


This is a development that I find the most exciting of all. It is also a great strategic move that will ensure higher adoption rate of Twitter. Especially among Apple customers. In the next version of the mobile operating system Twitter is very deeply integrated and will allow users to share their activity online from pretty much everywhere with just a single tap. Moreover, you will also be able to share your location with your followers. Mobile usage of Twitter is higher than usage on desktop PC’s or laptops, therefore it is a logical move to add the service to one of the most popular OS currently on the market.

(Take a look at what’s in store for the iOS users here)

These are exciting times for Twitter and may I say its users. The desire to improve and reach new levels will bring a lot of benefits to everyone using the service. Furthermore, such developments will result in the acquisition of new customers. Another important benefactor from these improvements will be brands and marketeers who will quickly adopt these technologies in their quest to retaining and obtaining new customers.

I have a feeling that Twitter will continue its growth. So far, it seems that Jack Dorsey and co are on the right track and know pretty well what they are doing. I am really curious what the next few months will bring us in terms of development of the service.

What are your predictions? And do you think this is a good move for Twitter?

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Timing in the online world matters – lessons from Dan Zarella

Today we are bombarded with content from everywhere. Especially online. Everyone who is actively participating on the internet is competing for our attention. Both content creators and curators are interacting intensely through various means like email, social networks, blogs, etc. And it is becoming more and more easily to start feeling overwhelmed and lost in all this information. Therefore, it is essential to understand and plan carefully when and how you are taking part in these exchanges.

Fortunately, a couple of days ago, Dan Zarella – the social media scientist working at HubSpot, presented his recent findings on “the science of timing” in a great webinar. I’ve been following Dan for quite some time and took part in several of his webinars as a result of which I’ve gained important understanding about the world of social media, email and blogging.

As I said, the webinar I’ll point out in this post is about timing. Timing regarding social networks, email and blogging activity. Here are some of the main points from Dan’s presentation (or takeaways as he prefers to call them):

Social media:

– Retweeting happens most during the afternoon, mostly between 12PM and 6PM
– Tweeting more on a regular basis during the week, don’t worry that your followers will be overwhelmed by your tweets – this will also help you increase the number of followers
– However, if you are looking to gain more clicks to your own content (webpage, blog) make sure you don’t bury these links in other updates you are tweeting/retweeting
– If you are focusing on spreading your content on Facebook, share links during the weekend

Email:

– People read email most frequently during mornings, therefore posting early in the morning increases the chance of your message to be read
– Experiment with emailing over the weekend – open and click rates are higher at that time, yet bounces and abuse reports are also higher. Email gets most attention on the weekends
– Sending more emails increases the click-through rates and decreases unsubscribe levels
– Newest subscribers are the best – they are likely to remember you best and have higher interest in your email

Blogging:

-Similar to email, blogs are most read during the morning, yet one must not underestimate that 40% of people still read blogs at night
– People read more blogs during weekdays
– Yet if you want to have more comments, try blogging over the weekends – people are more inclined to join your discussions on Saturdays and Sundays
– People who link to your content are most active early in the morning, during the week
– More frequent blogging will result in more views and linking

These are in brief the major points of the webinar. One thing you should note is that the times used in the presentation are according to the EST time zone, but I believe that the same time frames can be related to time zones within Europe.

Here is an interesting tool by HubSpot which will show you your most retweetable times and days:

http://TweetWhen.com

And here is Dan’s presentation on the science of timing:

The most important media corporation – YOU!

The most important media corporation!

I believe that in today’s interconnected world each and every one of us is a media corporation with several media outlets. If you are reading this, you are a member of my audience. You probably found this content on platforms like WordPress, Facebook, Twitter or similar. So, you’re also using these channels. You produce, consume and share content on them. Therefore, these are your media outlets – all of them part of your media corporation: YOU. We can also look at it as your personal brand.
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