Carl Gallagher wrote:
A recent report from Hitwise shows that Twitter is growing from strength to strength in Australia. For much of last year there has been a lot of chatter about Twitter’s growth overseas, particularly in the US and UK markets. Australia has been slower to adopt until now.
I admit that I have found it difficult to get into Twitter. Having signed up over a year ago, I struggled for many months to understand the appeal. I knew very few people who I could follow, and those that I did know tweeted infrequently. Usually it was a tweet about “needing coffee”. The rest were just using it as a tool to promote their blog entries (which I use Google Reader for anyway). For me, Twitter was not giving me much value that I wasn’t already getting elsewhere.
More recently I have started to “get it”. I have found, and am now following some interesting Australian-based Twitter-folk. The comments about needing coffee are still there (often tweeted by me I might add), but for me Twitter has become a source of information that is not contained in blogs or news feeds.
Working in Advertising and digital marketing, I am now getting a lot of news about breaking campaigns and local industry gossip through Twitter. A few months ago this was not the case, but now it seems that the tipping point is here – at least in the tweets that I am interested in. I guess it has taken a little longer to mature in Australia as we have a smaller population than the US and UK market, and therefore the smaller pool of interesting tweets to follow.
With Australian usage growing, it will be interesting to see how long it will take the business community in Australia to latch on to Twitter. There are only a few examples of this so far. Some early adopters like Telstra have had it backfire on them, howeverto their credit they seem to be listening to their followers and refining their Twitter strategy. Despite the criticism, they are taking steps in the right direction and using Twitter to converse and also listen.
Social media still seems to be uncharted territory for so many organisations here. It is such an opportunity for some well-known (but less loved) brands to really start connecting one-on-one with potential customers and build stronger brands as a result. I for one am looking forward to the conversation.