Social media and the shrinking elephant

To say Facebook has ruled the social media landscape in the past few years is like saying Texas has “warm” summers. It is a huge understatement.

Facebook burst onto the scene when it overtook MySpace in popularity between 2006 and 2007. But now the elephant in the room is being taken down, 140 characters at a time.

Twitter is the new beast. Interaction with and usage of Twitter will eventually surpass that of the Palo Alto giant. With more than 340 million tweets per day, Twitter serves our short attention span and encourages INSTANT feedback on major events. Your Twitter feed refreshes at the speed of light, feeding our insatiable appetite for constant social fodder.

With this new and ever-expanding growth, it is alarming how many businesses, small and large, still pay no attention to Twitter, the ultimate (so far) customer interaction interface. With the ability to respond to complaints and compliments in real time, ignoring Twitter is no longer a viable strategy.

What if I told you being on Twitter was not enough? You have to manage it correctly, driving interaction and conversation on the trending topics all while maintaining your brand’s identity. It is all about saying the right thing at the right time.

As someone who is relatively new to the Twitterverse, I was late to the party and I was underdressed. But now Twitter and I are best friends. (We have a golf game this weekend...don't tell Facebook.)

With only about 14 percent of business profiles executing Twitter interaction correctly according to many of the top social media research firms (Pew, Buddy Media, etc), it is time to get serious.  It is time for YOU to embrace the “new” kid on the block. Actually, more like the 800-lb. gorilla.

So, go introduce yourself.  Just keep it under 140 characters.

- Casey Whittington