Twitter continues to gain momentum as a marketing and networking tool, and with that momentum comes a new set of rules. All social interaction has rules of etiquette, and since Twitter offers a new form of conversation, it comes with its own set of rules. We already touched on some of the “Twitter types” in the last blog post, but Twitter is a new medium, which means the rules are still being defined.
Thanks to Guy Kawasaki for his addition to the Twitter conversationalist profiles. Kawasaki has identified six Twitter types (as opposed to the four in our last post) and there is even a downloadable poster for easy reference. (Don’t you hate people who pigeonhole everything into categories?) The question is, which type are you?
The Newbie – This is the novice who has decided to chronicle his or her life on Twitter. Those new to Twitter think it’s all about where you are having coffee or watching paint dry, and these types of Tweeters reinforce that notion. The Newbie has a choice: evolve to a higher level of conversation, or risk having your tweets left on the “block” list. Apply a little understanding here and see how they grow.
The Brand – This Twitterer understands the power of Twitter to promote personal brand, so the dichotomy is how to balance self-promotion with conversation; how to promote yourself without baking it too obvious. Many of these Twitterers are worth watching.
The Smore – The term is short for “social media whore.” This Tweeter is all about “what do I get out of this?” These Tweeters see Twitter as a self-promotional tool, nothing more. Some are obnoxious and others are personable, so tolerance is a good approach, if they aren’t too over the top.
The Bitch – This is the Twitterer whose mating call is “kvetch!” Kawasaki calls them the “shock jocks” of Twitter, but basically they are bitter Twitterers who complain about people who have figured out social media. Block them!
The Maven – This is the self-proclaimed expert in his or her field, and their Tweets offer real insight into their profession. If you are looking for gurus in your field to follow who can offer insight, then follow the Maven by all means.
The Mensch – These types of Twitter birds are rare, but incredibly helpful. They offer assistance where needed. These are the online altruists whose mission is to help their fellow followers. These are rare birds, but when you find one, follow and adore them.
So consider your Twitter strategy and think about which Twitter type best fits your strategy. There is no one-size-fits-all (I told you the pigeonholes don’t work). But it’s interesting to consider different approaches to Twitter and how microblogging continues to evolve as a marketing and branding tool.