Sunday, May 1, 2011
When I first heard our Social Media class would be doing a project with Twitter, I decided it was time to get one of my own. I found this social network difficult to grasp for awhile. Now, a few weeks later, I am finally starting to learn the ropes and see Twitter as a useful tool for staying up-to-date with industry professionals and companies. This platform is a highly customizable news feed that caters to your specific interests. I like that I can stay current on all my favorite people, places and news on one site. However, one feature still confuses me on Twitter, that feature is hashtagging. Here is how I have begun to classify hashtags. They are a way for societies and individuals with similar outlooks to assemble online. Some hashtags are incredibly odd, for example: #ileftyoubecause; this hashtag is self-explanatory. Those using this hashtag post things like: #Ileftyoubecause you talk too much, or #Ileftyoubecause I can do better. On the other hand, I saw useful hashtags. One example is a hashtag for the White House Correspondent’s Dinner: #whcd. This is a neat way for the public to follow this event if they are not invited. Members attending can post what is going on, who is in attendance and who is speaking. One post I read was talking about Donald Trump speaking at the dinner. After doing research on hashtags, I think the most interesting part is that anyone can start one, and if you are an influence on Twitter, you can hear what others have to say on the topic.
Companies on Twitter
There are two companies I am following for this assignment. The first is McNeely Pigott & Fox (MP&F) (http://twitter.com/#!/mpfpr), and the second is Fahlgren Mortine (http://twitter.com/#!/FahlgrenMortine). Something worth noting about these two feeds is the frequency in which these companies post. MP&F wins this battle, boasting 919 tweets, whereas Fahlgren has 467 total tweets. Next subject-matter will be compared and contrasted. MP&F uses Twitter as an internal dialogue; a lot of their posts have to do with employees, or office announcements. Interns are mentioned quite a bit, as well as hometown news stories. MP& F does occasionally engage external publics by posing questions, such as http://twitter.com/#!/mpfpr/status/57895122767060992. In comparison, Fahlgren acknowledges their internal publics in congratulations, but Fahlgren primarily uses Twitter as a resource. To expand on this inference, Fahlgren is constantly re-tweeting articles on social media tips, advice, trends, etc. This would be a great place to reference if you wanted to jump start your social media knowledge. They also make reference to their campaigns, and example is, http://twitter.com/#!/FahlgrenMortine/status/61134075171323904. I checked both Websites for hashtags since we have been referencing hashtags so often in class. McNeely Pigott & Fox mentions their hashtag for a podcasting program they are holding. Interested, I clicked on the hashtag to see what types of information was being shared. There was only one post. Fahlgren also uses hashtags: #IR2011 is one that was mentioned in two of the most recent posts. However, those using this hashtag speak another language. So while it has a lot of responses, I am not sure of the content.
People on Twitter
There are two people I am following for this assignment. The first is Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos.com (http://twitter.com/#!/zappos). The second is Bill Balderaz, Webbed Marketing (http://twitter.com/#!/bbalderaz). I will begin my analysis of these two feeds by frequency in posting. These two individuals have posted at a very similar rate. Hsieh has posted 2,263 times in total and Balderaz has posted 2,180 times. Both post at a much higher frequency than the companies I followed this past week. Also significant to analyzing these two tweeters is the scope of their audience. Over 1.8 million people follow Tony Hsieh while 1,200 people follow Bill Balderaz. Next I will compare and contrast subject-matter. Balderaz is very personal with his posts, and tweets about trips he is taking, conferences he is attending, and the people he is meeting. He seems to be a humorous guy, especially when he says this: http://twitter.com/#!/bbalderaz/status/52818416117104640 In contrast, Tony Hsieh talks a lot about his research on happiness. Hsieh tweets about talking with celebrities, for example http://twitter.com/#!/zappos/status/52437085587640320, and tweets quotes and proverbs. I can understand why so many people follow him, because he is insightful and who isn’t searching for ultimate happiness? Hsieh is someone I will definitely continue to follow closely. As far as hashtagging, Hsieh has a hashtag for discussing his book: #DeliveringHappiness. Balderaz also makes reference to hashtags, and most are for events that he is attending.