Recently, while cleaning out the dead twitter accounts from my follow list, I was shocked to see some of the people who had inactive twitter accounts. There were a lot of people I met through twitter no longer using it. One of the very early adopters and local social media elite hadn't used his twitter account in over two years. Even Zappos CEO and twitter darling, Tony Hsieh, with nearly 3-Million followers, had only one tweet in the last year!
It got me thinking about how we use twitter now vs. a few years ago. I still use twitter as much as I did, probably more so, when you consider how much I use it for clients. But, how I use it has changed. I don't have as nearly as many engaging conversations on it as I used to - mostly because I don't get the responses I used to. So, when I wanted to get feedback from my social media brethren to find out if they too were leaving twitter, I posed the question on Facebook.
Facebook is where more robust conversations seem to be taking place. My question about twitter abandonment stirred up a conversation nearly 60 comments long over the course of the day - although a few people did take to twitter to respond to my FB question. Most of those responding where people who live and work in social media. And most still declared their love for twitter. But many said they are not using it as much as they used to.
Lara Galloway, @mombizcoach, used to get most of her business from twitter - she even wrote a post about it in this blog a few years ago. But now she says, " I used to live and breathe doing powerful engaging and connecting on twitter while somewhat ignoring facebook. Now the tables have turned and I notice I keep feeling bad about not spending as much time cultivating relationships on twitter. Instead, I'm really cultivating them in my facebook groups. Twitter has a wider net. Facebook has a deeper connection."
For some twitter still has the same appeal. There were still plenty of people who declared their twitter habits havn't changed or even improved. "I use Twitter even more then before, with lots of convo and keep making connections off of it," said Aaron Cruz.
Not surprising, those who have made big splashes on twitter are sticking with it. Scott Stratton, who as @unmarketing, made his name in the social media world with a dominating twitter presence said simply, "I'm still chirping." And Detroit newscaster Stephen Clark, who famously created the #backchannel to connect with viewers via twitter during their newscasts also quipped, "I still tweet a little. Ok, a lot."
"Twitter excels at connecting. Facebook excels at conversing." - Charle Wollborg, President of Curve Detroit, gave probably the best explanation of how the two channels have evolved, going on to say, "Twitter is still the best tool for growing your network. Facebook is still the best tool for strengthening your network."
Graves De Armond, Secretary of the Social Media Club of Detroit agrees, "Facebook for more conversation. Twitter for business and research."
How has your twitter habit changed? Do you find yourself using it more, the same or less? Are you using it more for business and news gathering than conversations with friends? How do you use it and where do you see that changing in the future? Let's continue the conversation.