Why you care about Twitter too much.

The kids over at Information is Beautiful have put together a great infographic that looks at Twitter in several different ways and really, it’s a great shock to the system to help us all realize that Twitter isn’t as important as a lot of social media consultants and digital shops might want you to think it is. Take a look:

Seriously. Over 70% of users (which, let me remind you, is still a very small sliver of the population) aren’t active users. And, on average, only 8% of content on Twitter is considered “good.” (And yes, I know that’s subjective.)

My point? That Twitter is a drop in the bucket of word-of-mouth. That you don’t need a Twitter strategy first. You need a STRATEGY first. And maybe Twitter is an extension of that strategy. But never, ever, the center. It seems that the social media consultants have all started saying that Twitter and Facebook and Foursquare and (insert whatever platform comes out next week) are all “tools in your toolbox.” Yet most of them have no toolbox to speak of. They still all talk about the platforms – incessantly.

So start at the beginning. Look for where it hurts instead of just taking fist-fulls of medicine and hoping for the best. It’ll save you a lot of time, energy and pain.

25 Comments

  • September 24, 2010

    Chad Hartman

    Good piece and stats. I think Twitter is so easy for people (to push whatever they want) that they have to come to grips with this reality. I RT’ed in efforts to fill the 8%.

  • September 24, 2010

    Cynthia Nagle

    FANTASTIC! I welcome more pieces like this to sort through the Twitter noise and help people make some sense of it as PART of a smart strategy. And I also RT’d to augment that paltry 8%!

  • September 24, 2010

    John Creighton

    When I’m a blog and I see the reactions from twitter their is usually no content usually just a little itty bitty URL and nothing said. If these people simply use it as a bookmarking service then whey not use a bookmarking services. As far as feeds go I spend most of my time looking at my network feed on delicious and followed by facebook (where their is no length restriction).

    Delicious being a bookmarking site provides a better description of the links, provides useful tags to categorize the information, lets me find other people who are interested in similar things and I can search all the bookmarks of the people on my network. What it is missing is to be able to search for information on other peoples networks. That is friends of friends might provide a useful search space.

    I know twitter has many tools to overcome it’s limitations but without these tools I think it is pretty limited.

  • September 27, 2010

    stevehulbert (Steve Hulbert)

    Twitter Comment


    RT @slantsixneal: This is very, very good. RT @spikejones Why you care about Twitter too much: [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 27, 2010

    tbains (Tracy Bains)

    Twitter Comment


    LOL–I’m experiencing tweet burnout so this reinforces it’s time 4 RL! RT @afetterly: @tbains #twitter schmitter? [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 27, 2010

    coryripley (Cory Ripley)

    Twitter Comment


    RT @blairenns I wish I could force you to read this. RT @spikejones Why you care about Twitter too much: [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • Twitter Comment


    Reading : Why you care about Twitter too much [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 27, 2010

    thatwoman_is (Cd)

    Twitter Comment


    Really nice post “Ask Spike.” Why you care about Twitter too much. [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 27, 2010

    afetterly (Amanda Fetterly)

    Twitter Comment


    @tbains twitter schmitter? [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 27, 2010

    Snufflemuffin (Ryan Weisgerber)

    Twitter Comment


    RT @spikejones Why you care about Twitter too much: [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 27, 2010

    thinkingwayne (Wayne Robinson)

    Twitter Comment


    Wow.. great perspective RT @spikejones Why you care about Twitter too much: [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 27, 2010

    SBNewsTips (SBNewsTips)

    Twitter Comment


    RT @biztrek: Why you care about Twitter TOO MUCH ~ [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 27, 2010

    Rachna2010 (Rachna Sundaram)

    Twitter Comment


    @spikejones [link to post] I just wrapped up a piece for @revenews which reminds that SM is just ONE part of your overall strat.

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 28, 2010

    tomhenrich (Tom Henrich)

    Twitter Comment


    Amen. “You don’t need a Twitter strategy 1st. You need a STRATEGY first. And maybe Twitter is an extension of that.” [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 28, 2010

    blairenns (Blair Enns)

    Twitter Comment


    I wish I could force you to read this. RT @spikejones Why you care about Twitter too much: [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 28, 2010

    BizTrek (BizTrek CEO)

    Twitter Comment


    Why you care about Twitter TOO MUCH ~ [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 28, 2010

    hughweber (Hugh Weber)

    Twitter Comment


    RT @spikejones: Why you care about Twitter too much: [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 30, 2010

    mccasal (mccasal)

    Twitter Comment


    Twitter by infographic that shows some interesting facts. Do we care too much about Twitter? [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • Twitter Comment


    tviteris 100 cilvēku griezumā [link to post] tipa, lai pārāk nesafanojas :)

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • October 6, 2010

    AHARRIDEN (ADAM HARRIDEN)

    Twitter Comment


    Twitter Sats- If the Twitter community were 100
    [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • October 6, 2010

    davidburn (David Burn)

    Twitter Comment


    “on average, only 8% of content on Twitter is considered ‘good.’” -@SpikeJones [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • October 6, 2010

    Mockwriter (J Mockridge)

    Twitter Comment


    RT @davidburn: “on average, only 8% of content on Twitter is considered ‘good.’” -@SpikeJones [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

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  • [...] What can PR and marketing pros take away from the infographic? Fleishman-Hillard’s Spike Jones, who shared the graphic on his blog, had this to say about it: [...]

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