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Don't You Dare Dis My Babble!

October 1, 2009  

This summer, Pear Analytics released a study that got plenty of play in the Twitter/blogosphere.

According to the Pear research, 40.5 percent of the messages published on social-media-darling Twitter are "pointless babble," and a mere 8.7 percent of tweets have pass-along value to others.

The piece won itself a lot of buzz from both sides of the proverbial fence. Anti-Twitterers were all, "AHA! I knew this was just a passing fad!" Pro-Twitterers ranged from defensive to hurt, arguing that Pear's characterization of "pointless babble" was subjective and narrow.

But before you wipe Twitter off the whiteboard, consider this: Said "pointless babble" is exactly what makes Twitter such a rich resource for brands seeking to discover what users really think about them. Without the pressure of being profound, and with the brevity and speed afforded by updating your status instantly, users say exactly what's on their minds, for the most-part unedited, and often revealing.

For example, a casual Twitter search of "Inglourious Basterds" following its premier revealed that the majority of users who'd seen it wanted to see it again. Now, that's great on-the-spot info for a movie producer!

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  • by Amanda Vega Thu Sep 24, 2009 via web

    Great post. In addition, everyone (including some of our big brands) forget that "pointless babble" is what makes it social, and makes others connect with you. While they may not retweet chatter about shoes, or your kids, or your favorite band - they likely listen much more readily to those tweets without aversion. And that's what builds your following - being real, and talking - just like you would at a party. At a party you wouldn't say 100 things that are going to be repeated. And you wouldn't just shout about what you do for a living. You'd share "pointless babble" about the weather, and clothes, and cocktails...and then fit in the "important stuff" in palatable bits that then make you real, make you important, and make you social.

    Amanda Vega

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