Those who don’t use Twitter think it’s stupid, a waste of time, and pointless. However, as an avid tweeter and lover of reading tweets, I disagree. There are so many benefits offered by using Twitter. No, it’s not a game changer, but it does have benefits. And if you’re not on the medium, you’re missing out.
Branding. Twitter is one more tool that allows you to brand yourself for free. You can follow your mentors, educators, and industry-insiders on Twitter. This site provides something that no other medium offers: instant, real-time interaction with any single person using the site.
Networking. I needed guest speakers for two classes I was teaching in the fall. I reached out to those I’m connected with on Twitter in Madison. Threw it out there that I was looking for people who received a job offer or interview because of blog, website, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. I found three speakers.
News. News hits on Twitter faster than it can be published to your RSS reader – or even a website. It’s also a sea of content. Millions of people are sharing articles and conversing with each other. By not being on Twitter, you’re missing a huge opportunity to be an observer of those conversations as well as being an active participant.
Efficiency. With only 140 characters, you have to be concise. This will make you a better writer and better at communicating with less information. A great tool for business writing.
Management. Google yourself. What were the results? Things from college that you don’t want potential employers or colleagues to see? Twitter can actually help you hide results. Search engines love fresh content. Twitter is updated constantly – or at least it should. And Google indexes Twitter, which means, Google is more likely to show your tweets than an old website from 2003 that shows you drinking from a beer bong.
So get on Twitter and start participating in intelligent conversations. This is a huge part of your branding that you shouldn’t risk. But pay attention to the key phrase: intelligent conversation. You don’t want a few dumb posts to ruin your reputation. Always remember that millions of people can read what you put online.