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Micro-blogging Mania

Posted on 3.30.2009

Few trends have taken over the Web as quickly as micro-blogging, specifically Twitter. According to Compete.com, Twitter.com received more than 8 million page views in February 2009, up from under 5 million in December 2008. If your company doesn't have a Twitter account, make it a priority to get one.

Many serious Web professionals have already jumped on the Twitter bandwagon, including media outlets. ABC's Nightline regularly solicits Twitter feedback and even runs user messages in a ticker across the bottom of the television screen. Major newspapers across the United States are printing messages from their readers and the Chicago Tribune even lists its editors’ Twitter usernames. But it's not just media. Whole Foods has more than 250,000 followers, and Jet Blue has more than 190,000.

Make no mistake; your Twitter account is a blog, it just happens to have a 140 character limit for each post. But many of the same blogging guidelines apply. And although it might not be the best venue to earn significant revenue, you can make money through Twitter right now, and the future looks even brighter.

Twitter users want to see content relevant to their interests. That means not updating with only links to new products, but updating with information in your industry and relevant to your blog’s focus. That doesn’t mean you can’t attempt to sell a product through a link on Twitter, but be sparing with your pitches.

If you want to test the waters with contextual advertising through Twitter, visit Adjix.com. This system will insert ads into your individual updates, or it can frame a Web page to which you link with ads. You get paid by impressions or clicks, so it’s best suited to those with thousands of followers.

Twitter might have an easier time incorporating advertising than a network like Facebook, as many users are already networking with businesses and are accustomed to seeing product-related updates. But for now, the best way to earn through Twitter is simply through brand recognition and links to your blog. Take a look at ShortURL.com, BudURL.com and Cli.gs - these services will take your blog post’s long URL and shrink it for Twitter posting, and they include analytics so you can see what content is working best with your followers.

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