Is Twitter Really Worth the Effort?

Over the past several months I’ve really started to pay attention to social media and networking and how they can be utilized to help build a brand and drive traffic to my websites.  Considering all of the major social media sites are free and have millions of users, harnessing their “power” is pretty important if you’re trying to make money online.

One of the fastest growing social media sites is Twitter, which currently has between 5M and 20M users, depending on your source.  (Kind of a wide discrepancy, don’t you think?)  No matter the current number, Twitter is still experiencing massive month-over-month growth.

With such a large and growing user base, Twitter has become a powerful marketing tool for many of us in the internet marketing game, especially those of us who are fortunate enough to have a lengthy list of followers.

Unfortunately for me, until recently I wasn’t one of the lucky few who had thousands of followers, so I was afraid that the time I put into using Twitter to gain traffic was kind of wasted.  And based on my initial results, I was definitely wasting my time, not because of Twitter but because of how I was using it.

Like many of you, I initially took the “link spam the sh*t out of Twitter and hope for the best” approach.  While I did see a slight increase in traffic, it wasn’t worth even the five minutes of time I wasting logging in and posting my tweet.

Then one day it dawned on me: building a Twitter following and (more importantly) leveraging that following into traffic wasn’t going to be any different than trying to build a following and gaining traffic for one of my blogs.  I couldn’t just throw up a tweet and a link and expect the traffic floodgates to open.

In order to really leverage the power of Twitter, I had to post relevant information and ideas that people wanted, even if it didn’t immediately lead to a spike in traffic to my sites.  I had to build a base of solid content and go from there.  For those of you who run blogs this probably sounds pretty familiar.

After changing direction and dropping the link spam routine — yes, I still post links to my sites, just not in every tweet — my followers list has grown rapidly, and so too has the traffic to my sites.

Moral of the story, for success with Twitter, like anything else web related, you need to put in a little bit of time, have lots of good content, build a following and THEN expect to slowly reap the rewards.

Comments

  1. Our business is wireless devices and we just recently started using Twitter to get the word out and the response has been very good.

  2. Thanks for the feedback. Have you noticed more sales or just simply more interest?

  3. I have just recently started on twitter and have found the traffic response to be good, all the affiliate links are starting to get a bit annoying though. Nice to read a good post like yours.

  4. Thanks for the comment. I’m pretty new with Twitter too, although, now that I’m figuring it out, I’m kicking myself for not getting more involved with it earlier.

  5. Hey Brian,

    I’ve personally found Twitter to be effective. There are some concerns though, like what time of day is best to maximize your tweeting.

    Bottom line, the best way to approach Twitter is to create value in other peoples lives. 😉

    –Ryan

  6. Ryan,

    Thanks for the comment. I certainly agree with your statement regarding knowing when to post and all that stuff. As luck would have it, I’m actually working on a free ebook that will help get rid of much of the confusion. It will be available for download here and at http://www.toptwitterprograms.com by the end of the week, so be sure to check back!

    Brian