There’s a frisson of risk, writing about Twitter at the moment. By the time I get this newsletter proofread and emailed into your inbox, will it be wildly out of date? Will Twitter even still exist?
Assuming Elon Musk hasn’t driven it completely into the ground and that messy bird app is still upright and clinging to its perch among the social media giants, I wanted to ask the question: should your business even be on Twitter in 2022?
I owe Twitter a lot. It’s how I met Sarah Mitchell. Without it, we would never have set up Typeset and I would never have had the opportunities and success I’ve enjoyed in recent years — which have been, professionally, the happiest of my life.
But, in the vernacular of Marie Kondo, Twitter had stopped bringing me joy. Actually, it was bringing me a lot of misery. So, I left Twitter about 18 months ago. I deleted my account completely, waving goodbye to my once coveted blue tick. I have no regrets.
The ability to have an argument with someone you’ve never met is not something I miss. The ability for strangers to chime in with their opinions or complaints and ruin your day, I have not mourned. The endless hours wasted doom scrolling everything from presidential edicts to problematic memes are now put to more productive outcomes.
Since the Musk mess began, many brands, too, have decided to make their exit from Twitter. From General Motors to Balenciaga, brands are either deleting their accounts or cancelling their advertising.
So, should you do the same? For me, it comes back to the answers to a few simple questions that go to the core of your business:
Is your audience on Twitter?
And are they actually seeing your content and engaging with it? So many brands, especially small businesses and B2B companies have been shouting into the void on Twitter for years. They’re getting zero engagement and it’s generating zero business. Sound familiar? If so, then Twitter is doing nothing for your business and tweeting is wasted effort.
Is Twitter how you want to engage with your audience?
Wouldn’t it be better to engage with them on a platform you actually own and control? Twitter became a complainers’ playground, littered with the public naming and shaming of brands, forcing companies to resource huge social media teams. Meanwhile, algorithm changes meant punters often weren’t seeing your posts anyway. Might resourcing your website and tending your email database be more effective and efficient?
Does Twitter align with your brand and your values?
The days of being on every social media platform just because the platform exists are over. You don’t have to be on Twitter. What does being on Twitter say about you and your brand? Might there be another platform that’s a better fit for you? Do you even need to be on social media at all?
I take no pleasure in the slow death of Twitter. A dozen or so years ago, Twitter was an amazing place to be. It was revolutionary. But, for me, the platform no longer served a positive purpose. It had stopped bringing me joy.
Bringing joy might not be the reason your business is on Twitter but, nevertheless, now’s a good time to think about whether the platform needs the Marie Kondo treatment.
29 November 2022
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