What happens on Twitter, stays on Twitter? Not so much. Say or do something interesting, crazy, or controversial enough and those 140 characters may get your face (or tweet) plastered in the New York Times, help you lose a job (self-twimmolation), strengthen your celebrity status, or get you elected into office.
With over 175 million registered accounts, Twitter, most recently valued this at $7.7 billion and predicted to hit $225 million in revenue in 2012, is transforming how and when people are communicating about their lives.
Need the proof?
- Companies including Virgin America, Samsung, and JetBlue are paying up to $120,000 for a promotional spot on Twitter. Per day. Consider this ad spend phenomenon one of the reasons many see an end of print media in our lifetime.
- Celebrities like Lady Gaga and politicians are using Twitter to connect and communicate with their fans and constituents. Most recently, basketball champion Shaquille O’Neal announced his retirement on Twitter.
- Twitter is transforming the way people get and read news. Nearly every news source in the world has a presence on Twitter, allowing people to truly personalize what they read about and how quickly they can find the information they need. The fastest, most personalized news outlet of the 21st century? Absolutely. Even Google has pulled in feed results from Twitter into their SERP pages.
- Twitter (along with Facebook and Google) has been a part of the technology trifecta that has enabled, empowered, and mobilized revolutions around the world over the last two years. Use of Twitter in (and supporting) the Iranian and Egyptian political movements has filled the gap on rampant censorship in the Middle East. Most notably, the power and global reach of Twitter has helped citizens fight for their rights, freedom, and voices in times of unrest.
- Retailers including Gilt Groupe and Best Buy use their Twitter voice as a customer service channel. Their customers can follow them to find out about specific events and new products as well as using Twitter when they have product or order questions, problems, or concerns.
The influence of Twitter on the global advertising and communications industry is affecting how and where people are absorbing news, companies, brands, and advertising in general. Congratulations to Twitter, for empowering and revolutionizing how we communicate with each other… 140 characters at a time.