The State of Twitter: Thriving but Not for Everyone

By | April 17, 2009


This is the follow-up to my recent State of Twitter Part 1 post, in which I talked about the growth of Twitter, its proliferation in the media, and my decision to give it a try.

Along with my previous post, I conducted a survey about Twitter to over 1,500 participants.

This post is to report the results of the survey, along with my observations and a few opinions throughout.

The participants were mostly members of my Eric’s Tips newsletter. However, I also publicized it to my facebook friends, and it was re-tweeted by a few people which brought in some diversity as well.

But overall, I’d say that 80-90% of the participants were Internet marketers and aspiring entrepreneurs.

There were 927 Twitterers and 610 non-Twitterers.

I started by asking the Twitterers some basic questions about their use of Twitter:

How long have you been a Twitter user? 927 responses (Twitter users)
less than 1 month 193 (20.8%)
1-6 months 465 (50%)
6-12 months 181 (19.5%)
1 year or more 92 (9.9%)

How often do you tweet on average? 920 responses (Twitter users)
Once a day or less 648 (70.4%)
2-10 times a day 234 (25.4%)
More than 10 times a day 38 (4.1%)

I found it interesting that over 70% of respondents are only tweeting once a day or less. On the one hand I found it somewhat refreshing that my readers aren’t all raging twit-a-holics, but I wonder whether that’s too infrequent to really engage your followers and make your Twittering worthwhile.

On average, how much time do you spend twittering per day? (both tweeting and reading) 922 responses (Twitter users)
less than 5 minutes 385 (41.8%)
5 – 10 minutes 239 (25.9%)
10 – 30 minutes 180 (19.5%)
Over 30 minutes 118 (12.8%)

Lack of time is probably the reason why most respondents only tweet once a day or less. On the other hand, 118 respondents are spending over 30 minutes a day twittering… that’s a serious commitment. And I think if everyone really kept track of exactly how much time they spent on Twitter-related activities, it would be more minutes than they estimated.

Why do you use Twitter? 917 responses (Twitter users)
Solely for business purposes 288 (31.4%)
Solely for personal/social reasons 108 (11.8%)
Mostly for business with some social 350 (38.2%)
Mostly for social with some business 171 (18.6%)

No surprises here. I fully expected this audience to be slanted toward business in their use of Twitter. And indeed 88% are using it for at least some business purposes.

On a scale of 1 to 5, how much do you enjoy using Twitter? 920 responses (Twitter users)
1 – I hate it 40 (4.3%)
2 – Somewhat dislike it 107 (11.6%)
3 – It’s OK 406 (44.1%)
4 – I like it 248 (27.0%)
5 – I love it 119 (12.9%)

Alright, so not all Twitter users are in love with tweeting, but very few hate it.

For the non-Twitterers, I wanted to know why they weren’t using Twitter, and whether they were paying attention to it…

What is the main reason you don’t use Twitter? 610 responses (Non-Twitter users)
I tried it and didn’t like it 22 (3.6%)
I’m not familiar with it 272 (44.6%)
Don’t see enough benefit 121 (19.8%)
Don’t like the format 23 (3.8%)
Not enough time 172 (28.2%)

I was expecting a higher percent to have tried Twitter and quit it (qwitters), but apparently it has a fairly low abandonment rate among marketers. The “not enough time” folks (28.2%) seem to support my theory as to why so many Twitterers tweet as infrequently as they do. But the biggest stat here is the number of respondents who were not familiar with Twitter (44.6%)… and keep in mind that this survey was conducted almost exclusively to an Internet-savvy crowd. This just shows that Twitter is still in the process of breaking into the mainstream and has not yet reached the public consciousness like facebook has. If you were to survey random people on the street, even fewer would know about Twitter. But in another year or two it could be as common as google (hey Twitter’s name has already become a verb, that’s a good sign)… we’ll see.

Do you read other people’s Twitter pages? 595 responses (Non-Twitter users)
Yes – frequently 2 (0.3%)
Yes – occasionally 106 (17.8%)
No 487 (81.8%)

Note to marketers: Twitter is only effective for reaching other Twitterers. Perhaps that’s part of the reason why many Twittering marketers are passionate about evangelizing for Twitter?

Next I asked several questions about FOLLOWING, because it seems to be the hot topic right now. In fact, last night Ashton Kutcher and CNN became the first users to surpass 1,000,000 followers on Twitter, and others will pass the mark in the coming days.

Some people are embracing the competitive aspect of gaining followers, while others are shunning it. A rising contingency is even speculating on whether Twitter should remove the follower count. I personally doubt Twitter will remove the follower count, because it’s getting a lot of publicity for Twitter and it’s driving new users to them. However, I think a viable option would be for them to give users an option to HIDE their followers. I would actually like that.

How many followers do you have? 923 responses (Twitter users)
0-100 483 (52.3%)
101-500 243 (26.3%)
501-1000 97 (10.5%)
1001-5000 86 (9.3%)
More than 5000 14 (1.5%)

This one surprised me a little because it seems like everyone and their mother has thousands of followers. But it appears that those are just the ones who are getting all the attention, while the average Twitter user has a pretty small following. According to Joel Comm’s book Twitter Power, you only need 80 followers to be in the top 10% of all Twitter users.

How many people are YOU following? 924 responses (Twitter users)
0-100 514 (55.6%)
101-500 215 (23.3%)
501-1000 78 (8.4%)
1001-5000 108 (11.7%)
More than 5000 9 (1%)

So I wanted to know if they were actually paying attention to the people they were following…

Seriously, do you pay attention to the tweets of the people you’re following? 925 responses (Twitter users)
Yes I read all of them. 84 (9.1%)
I read over half of them. 188 (20.3%)
I read less than half of them. 336 (36.3%)
No, I read few or none of them. 317 (34.3%)

Of course I got some flak for the way the question was worded. And admittedly I wanted to support my theory that most Twitter users aren’t paying attention. But now that I’ve immersed myself in Twitter in recent weeks, I’ve come to a better understanding that you’re simply not expected to pay attention to everyone you’re following.

If you’re following thousands of people, it’s physically impossible to read every tweet unless you make it a full time job. And even if you’re following a modest number of folks, it may be too overwhelming to read all their tweets.

Instead, I think the basic concept employed by most users is to glance at the stream of tweets coming from your followers, to sort of “take a pulse”, and to interact as time permits. In observing several popular Twitter users, it seems they pay the most attention to their “@ replies”, and are much more likely to respond to an @ reply than to get involved with random tweets.

So next I asked the question that I was really burning to ask.

Are the majority of Twitter users really follower-whores? Are they all pursuing a big following to stroke their own egos? OK, I didn’t word it quite like that…

Out of the following, which is your biggest priority for your Twitter account? 895 responses (Twitter users)
Gaining a lot of followers 88 (9.8%)
Gaining targeted followers 359 (40.1%)
Building relationships 448 (50.1%)

Twitter graph

This one blew me away. I really thought more people would be primarily interested in growing the size of their following. Either I have a bunch of humble people on my list, or a bunch of smart marketers.

  • Over 90% of respondents were more interested in gaining targeted followers and building relationships, than in growing the biggest list.

    So I asked a few more questions to help quantify their interest in each of those priorities:

    On a scale of 1-5, how important to you is gaining a HIGH QUANTITY of followers? 913 responses (Twitter users)
    1- not important at all 150 (16.4%)
    2 – slightly important 170 (18.6%)
    3 – somewhat important 214 (23.4%)
    4 – important 220 (24.1%)
    5 – very important 159 (17.4%)

    On a scale of 1-5, how important to you is it to gain TARGETED followers? 915 responses (Twitter users)
    1 – not important at all 68 (7.4%)
    2 – slightly important 59 (6.4%)
    3 – somewhat important 124 (13.6%)
    4 – important 251 (27.4%)
    5 – very important 413 (45.1%)

    On a scale of 1-5, how important to you is it to build real relationships on Twitter? 921 responses (Twitter users)
    1 – not important at all 76 (8.3%)
    2 – slightly important 107 (11.6%)
    3 – somewhat important 232 (25.2%)
    4 – important 279 (30.3%)
    5 – very important 227 (24.6%)

    So from those three questions, I found that while a lot of people do place a significant amount of importance on gaining followers, the respondents truly consider relationship building and gaining targeted followers to be of higher priority.

    So I asked one more question to make sure I really knew where their heart was on the matter…

    Which is more important to you? 904 responses (Twitter users)
    Making money from your followers 416 (46.0%)
    Building true friendships with followers 488 (54.0%)

    OK, so that one could have been sort of a trick question. I’m sure some people picked building friendships because they’re relationship marketers who realize that making a friend is the best way to make a sale. But still, I’d say chalk another one up for the “twitterers are not all money hungry bastards” side. Apparently people who get involved in Twitter ARE the type of people who like to build relationships and make new friends.

    I asked the non-Twitterers a related question to see if their perception of Twitterers would match up with the truth…

    Which of the following statements about Twitter users would you most strongly agree with? 610 responses (Non-Twitter users)
    They are vain and conceited 37 (6.1%)
    They are mostly marketers 80 (13.1%)
    They are sociable people 117 (19.2%)
    They are cooler than me 4 (0.7%)
    I have no opinion about them 372 (61.0%)

    Interestingly, out of those who had an opinion, the results do match up with the claims of the Twitter users. The most commonly held opinion was “They are sociable people,” and that seems to be fairly accurate.

    Does that mean that the non-Twitterers are less sociable? I asked a question to find out…

    Which is more important to you regarding your ONLINE activity? 593 responses (Non-Twitter users)
    Making money 496 (83.6%)
    Building true friendships 97 (16.4%)

    Now in fairness, I should have asked the Twitter users the same question. But clearly, the non-Twitter users are much more interested in making money than in making friends online.

    And the big asterisk here is *online. In other words, this doesn’t necessarily mean the non-Twitter users aren’t sociable people (although they might not be as sociable, as I explain later). It just means they use the Internet more as a money making tool than a relationship building platform. I would fit into that category. It’s not that I value money over friendships, or that I’m an anti-social person. But the reason I spend so much time online is primarily to make money. And admittedly, I’m probably less social than the average Twitter fanatic (*more on this in the conclusion of this article).

    Next, I wanted to know how Twitter users felt about “following back” and “auto-following” your followers…

    What percent of your followers do you follow back? 911 responses (Twitter users)
    I follow most or all of them 387 (42.5%)
    I follow over 50% of them 215 (23.6%)
    I follow between 10%-50% of them 136 (14.9%)
    I follow less than 10% of them 173 (19.0%)

    How do you feel about “auto following”? 915 responses (Twitter users)
    It’s fine as long as it’s not abused 320 (35.0%)
    It’s OK, but I don’t like it 221 (24.2%)
    I hate it 70 (7.7%)
    I don’t know what auto following is 304 (33.2%)

    Do you use an “auto follow” tool? 916 responses (Twitter users)
    Yes 132 (14.4%)
    No 784 (85.6%)

    The above is perhaps the most controversial topic when it comes to using Twitter for marketing purposes. One school of thought is that following all your followers is good for reasons including…

    – You’re better able to interact with them
    – You’re not perceived as a Twitter snob
    – You gain a valuable stream of marketing/research data at your fingertips

    And it seems that the majority of respondents in my survey would agree with that standpoint. 66.1 percent of the Twitter users are following over half of their followers, and 42.5% are following almost all of them. Furthermore, a solid 14.4% are using auto-follow tools.

    Such auto-follow tools are despised by critics of “gaining followers for the sake of growing a big list of followers”. One of the most eloquent arguments AGAINST auto-following was posted by an Internet marketing colleague that I respect, Michel Fortin, in his blog post: Drones and fakes, and in a follow-up blog post responding to a critic.

    Overall, I’m admittedly still on the fence regarding the issue. I can certainly see the negative aspects of auto-following including how it has the potential to ruin Twitter as a marketing tool (as was explained nicely by Michel). But I also see the benefits of following your followers, which is why I’ve chosen to follow most of my followers for now.

    (By the way, there ARE a lot of drones and fakes on Twitter… I think I have about 20 followers using Alex Mandossian’s picture.)

    I would also like to throw one additional argument into the mix, that I haven’t seen listed among the popular reasons for or against auto-following.

    I’m calling my argument the “status symbol mutual benefit”.

    Many Twitter users who follow each other are essentially mutually agreeing to give each other the benefit of inflating the other person’s follower count by 1 follower. Therefore I would not consider them to be “fake” following. They both realize that they’re not really going to be friends. And actually, Twitter doesn’t refer to your followers as friends, so I don’t think the “not true friends” argument holds weight anyway…

    Does this result in each participant’s list of followers being diluted and thus less valuable? Yes. And as those users repeat the process and add thousands of other auto-followers, they continue to dilute their list. BUT… it’s a list nonetheless. It’s a status symbol.

    Is it shallow? Yes. Is it egotistical? Most likely yes. But do status symbols hold a place in our society? Yes they do.

    The status-symbol-seeker’s list itself may be completely unresponsive and full of similarly minded list-building Twitterers (along with plenty of drones and fakes), which means it won’t be very useful from a marketing standpoint. But having tens of thousands of followers is currently a status symbol (like it or not), and it could open other doors of opportunity. A non-celebrity with 200,000 Twitter followers today would be considered a web 2.0 genius by a lot of people, EVEN IF their followers are mostly “fakes”.

    Fortunately, the value of Twitter accounts as status symbols will soon decline and most likely drop off the map. Why? It will happen for one of two reasons…

    1) If Twitter leaves things as they are, hundreds of thousands of users will eventually have millions of followers. Think about it. All that the auto-follow people need to do is devise a good system of congregating and following each other (it’s already happened to an extent). At that point, ANYONE can essentially grow their account as fast as Twitter will let them grow it. OK, so then the “status symbol” will become having a lot of followers without following a lot of people. No problem, we can game that too. All of the auto-follow people can just register a couple extra accounts, and set up a systematic “ring” of one-way followers.

    2) Since the above is inevitable if things stay the same, Twitter will most likely make some changes to prevent it from destroying their business.

    OK, so that’s my contribution to the auto-follow debate. Let’s move on to the rest of the survey…

    First, some evidence that big Twitter accounts are not really so much of a status symbol anyway. I asked the non-Twitterers…

    Are you impressed by people who have thousands of Twitter followers? 609 responses (Non-Twitter users)
    yes 111 (18.2%)
    no 270 (44.3%)
    not sure 228 (37.4%)

    As you can see, the average person is not too impressed by it anyway. I’m sure that this sentiment will only increase as large Twitter accounts become ever more common.

    I also wanted to know how the non-Twitterers perceived the value of the content being tweeted on Twitter…

    What is your impression of the content that people post on Twitter (tweets)? 601 responses (Non-Twitter users)
    It’s mostly insignificant 154 (25.6%)
    It’s interesting but not valuable 73 (12.1%)
    It’s mostly valuable information 22 (3.7%)
    It’s mostly spam 18 (3.0%)
    I don’t know 334 (55.6%)

    Well again, the biggest response was from those who are clueless about Twitter (55.6%). But among those who had an opinion, the majority believed that most tweets are insignificant.

    Interestingly, their perception is probably correct… and it’s not a bad thing. It appears that the insignificant “mundane” things are a big part of what makes Twitter enjoyable for its users.

    Yesterday my friend Joel Comm made a blog post called Twitter and a Box of Donuts, in which he explains why mundane tweets may be essential in building a successful Twitter following.

    Next I asked several of the same questions to both the Twitterers and non-Twitter users, to see how they differed in their opinions about Twitter…

    Which statement do you most strongly agree with?

    Twitter users
    (905 responses)
    Non-Twitter users
    (602 responses)
    (1507 responses)
    Twitter is truly a great social networking tool 619 (68.4%) 108 (17.9%) 727 (48.2%)
    Twitter is mainly good for marketers 286 (31.6%) 79 (13.1%) 365 (24.2%)
    I don’t know N/A 415 (68.9%) 415 (27.5%)

    What do you think is Twitter’s greatest contribution to the world?

    Twitter users
    (906 responses)
    Non-Twitter users
    (598 responses)
    (1504 responses)
    Being a social platform 403 (44.5%) 208 (34.8%) 611 (40.6%)
    Being a marketing platform 220 (24.3%) 65 (10.9%) 365 (18.9%)
    Being a news/information platform 283 (31.2%) 57 (9.5%) 340 (22.6%)
    I don’t know N/A 268 (44.8%) 268 (17.8%)

    How often do you use Twitter’s search function to get news or information?

    Twitter users
    (914 responses)
    Non-Twitter users
    (589 responses)
    (1503 responses)
    Daily or more often 104 (11.4%) 2 (0.3%) 106 (7.0%)
    Usually once a week or more 155 (17.0%) 12 (2.0%) 167 (11.1%)
    Not very often 327 (35.8%) 70 (11.9%) 397 (26.4%)
    Never 328 (35.9%) 505 (85.7%) 833 (55.4%)

    Where do you think Twitter will be 2 years from now in regard to its usefulness and value to the web?

    Twitter users
    (920 responses)
    Non-Twitter users
    (586 responses)
    (1506 responses)
    Pretty much the same, just bigger 290 (31.5%) 253 (43.2%) 543 (36.0%)
    Will be more important than it is now 460 (50.0%) 172 (29.4%) 632 (42.0%)
    Will be less important than it is now 170 (18.5%) 161 (27.5%) 397 (22.0%)

    Really no surprises in those answers. Those who use Twitter are more likely to have a positive outlook for its future, and more likely to get their news from it. Many of those who choose to not use Twitter are banking on the possibility that it will fade into oblivion (or at least a position of less relevance).

    Next I asked a couple of questions to help determine how both sets of respondents perceived the value of Twitter compared to other methods of online list building, and whether they were willing to pay for it…

    Which would you prefer to have if you could have just one of the following?

    Twitter users
    (914 responses)
    Non-Twitter users
    (587 responses)
    (1501 responses)
    5000 Twitter followers 120 (13.1%) 50 (8.5%) 106 (11.3%)
    5000 blog RSS readers 118 (12.9%) 65 (11.1%) 167 (12.2%)
    5000 email subscribers (double opt in) 642 (70.2%) 439 (74.8%) 1081 (72.0%)
    5000 facebook friends 34 (3.7%) 33 (5.6%) 67 (4.5%)

    If you could buy real followers, how much would you pay for 10,000 followers?

    Twitter users
    (905 responses)
    Non-Twitter users
    (589 responses)
    (1494 responses)
    $0 382 (42.2%) 278 (47.2%) 660 (44.2%)
    $1 – $100 340 (37.6%) 199 (33.8%) 539 (36.0%)
    $101 – $1000 142 (15.7%) 85 (14.4%) 227 (15.2%)
    $1001 – $5000 24 (2.7%) 13 (2.2%) 37 (2.5%)
    $5000 – $10,000 5 (0.6%) 8 (1.4%) 13 (0.9%)
    More than $10,000 12 (1.3%) 6 (1.0%) 18 (1.2%)

    The overwhelming majority of both sides of the party agreed that it is most valuable to have an opt-in list of email subscribers. The value of a Twitter follower seemed to be somewhat comparable to the value of a blog RSS subscriber.

    Neither party was willing to pay much of a premium for Twitter followers either. Almost half of respondents wouldn’t be willing to pay a single dollar for 10,000 Twitter followers. As I alluded to earlier, I believe the value of Twitter followers will continue to decline, particularly if the practice of auto-following continues.

    If there were a solid demand for Twitter followers, it could probably support a small cottage industry. Similar to overseas World of Warcraft farms (and other online games), a team of workers could easily build Twitter accounts with massive followings for resale.

    In such case, people could buy accounts with enough followers to give themselves “instant Twitter celebrity status”. But as I mentioned, the status of Twitter accounts seems to be quickly fading, and it does not appear that there is much of a market for it.

    On the other hand, I am interested in the 31 respondents who said they would pay over $5,000 for 10,000 Twitter followers. That just might be enough demand for someone to make a profitable business of Twitter farming. If targeted followings could be built and resold, it could be akin to buying co-reg email opt-in lists.

    The last question I asked the combined group was related to their overall online marketing and social networking activities…

    Which of the following do you currently have?

    Twitter users
    (920 responses)
    Non-Twitter users
    (600 responses)
    (1520 responses)
    a blog 683 (74.2%) 246 (41.0%) 929 (61.1%)
    email opt-in list 430 (46.7%) 170 (28.3%) 600 (39.5%)
    facebook account 711 (77.3%) 228 (38.0%) 939 (61.8%)
    myspace account 417 (45.3%) 117 (19.5%) 534 (35.1%)
    youtube account 574 (62.4%) 182 (30.3%) 756 (49.7%)
    other video site account(s) 181 (19.7%) 48 (8.0%) 229 (15.1%)
    flickr account 269 (29.2%) 52 (8.7%) 321 (21.1%)
    other photo site account(s) 147 (16.0%) 54 (9.0%) 201 (13.2%)
    LinkedIn account 426 (46.3%) 90 (15.0%) 516 (33.9%)
    Xanga account 61 (6.6%) 9 (1.5%) 70 (4.6%)
    Bebo account 82 (8.9%) 10 (1.7%) 92 (6.1%)
    Friendster account 92 (10.0%) 19 (3.2%) 111 (7.3%)
    Orkut account 56 (6.1%) 4 (0.7%) 60 (3.9%)
    Hi5 account 83 (9.0%) 26 (4.3%) 109 (7.2%)
    Other social networking account(s) 410 (44.6%) 137 (22.8%) 547 (36.0%)

    I found the above data to be VERY interesting. Across the board, the Twitter users were at least twice as likely to be involved in other social networking activities online.

    I guess that shouldn’t be too surprising, since it only supports our other data which indicated that Twitter users are more interested in building relationships online. But even facebook was no exception. The Twitter users were more than twice as likely to have a facebook account. And some of the numbers were even more extreme…

    The Twitter users were more than THREE times as likely to have an account at LinkedIn, Xanga, Bebo, Friendster, Orkut… and even Flickr!

    I mean, I thought Flickr was for anyone who likes to upload their photos? Apparently it appeals much more to the social crowd. I also found it interesting that the non-Twitter users were more likely to host their photos somewhere other than Flickr. When I wrote the question, I had in mind Picasa… but now that I think of it, those non-Twitter folks are probably using sites like Kodak Easyshare and Snapfish… sites that are more mainstream, and too commercial for the social folks.

    The Youtube number also surprised me a bit. I would expect that 99.9% of respondents have watched a video on Youtube, but I was impressed that 62.4% of Twitter users actually had a Youtube account. After all, you don’t need to have an account to view videos. You only need an account if you’re using it for social networking (to be friends/fans of other users), or for uploading your own videos.

    So I wanted to see what other kinds of tools the Twitter users were using…

    Which of the following tools/apps do you use? 920 responses (Twitter users)
    Tweetdeck 261 (28.4%)
    Power Twitter 50 (5.4%)
    Twitpwr 59 (6.4%) or any other shortener 121 (13.2%)
    TweetLater 171 (18.6%)
    twitpic 103 (11.2%)
    Twitturly 16 (1.7%)
    Twistori 8 (0.9%)
    TwitterLocal 45 (4.9%)
    any Twitter-related iphone app 36 (3.9%)
    any Twitter-related WordPress plugin 106 (11.5%)
    twitterfeed 75 (8.2%)
    twhirl 98 (10.7%)
    Twitterfox 62 (6.7%)
    Other free app (yes I know there are hundreds) 198 (21.5%)
    An app that you paid money for 22 (2.4%)

    No surprise that the ever-popular Tweetdeck came out on top. I was a little surprised that more Twitter users weren’t using iphone apps for Twitter (3.9%). I mean, doesn’t it seem like Twitter users are the iphone type?

    And only 2.4% had paid for a Twitter app. This would indicate to me that the market for paid Twitter apps is not very big yet. It would also support the notion that the Twitter users are not willing to put their money on the line for Twitter, even though most of them are using it for business purposes.

    This could make it difficult for Twitter to successfully monetize itself through paid accounts, due to lack of participation. And again, keep in mind that my survey group consisted mainly of marketers, who are probably MORE likely to invest in it than the average user.

    On the other hand, it may only take a tiny percentage to paid users to make it profitable. One study showed that 3.7% of flicker’s members had upgraded to the Pro account. Suppose Twitter grew to have 50X as many accounts as Flickr… maybe they could be wildly profitable with less than 1% paid accounts?

    Lastly I wanted to find out some vital stats in regard to using Twitter for business…

    How many visitors to your website (s) do you receive from Twitter? 920 responses (Twitter users)
    None 307 (33.4%)
    1-10 per day 285 (31.0%)
    10-100 per day 107 (11.6%)
    101-500 per day 12 (1.3%)
    More than 500 per day 5 (0.5%)
    I don’t know or don’t have a website 204 (22.2%)

    How much money do you make as a direct result of Twitter? 917 responses (Twitter users)
    None 606 (66.1%)
    $1 – $100 per month 137 (14.9%)
    $101 – $500 per month 28 (3.1%)
    $501 – $2000 per month 11 (1.2%)
    Over $2000 per month 2 (0.2%)
    Unknown 133 (14.5%)

    According to these numbers, I would say that Twitter IS a viable source of both web traffic, and income. However, most Twitter users have not yet seen those benefits.

    I do wonder what the results would look like if we were to do a more in depth study specifically on the effectiveness of Twitter for marketing. For this reason, I’m doing some joint research with Joel Comm, which we will most likely be releasing to the public in the coming weeks. You can be sure it will be a balanced view, as Joel is a steadfast supporter of Twitter, while I’m a bit of a perma-skeptic.

    So what’s my personal conclusion?

    On January 3rd, 2008, I wrote a post expressing my opinion that Twitter was probably not the best use of time for most marketers.

    Then in my previous blog post (April 7, 2009), I said “I’m not issuing an official retraction of my stance on Twitter… YET. But that day might be coming soon.”

    So am I ready to issue a retraction now that I’ve gotten involved in Twitter and done this research?

    No I’m not. I still stand by what I wrote in January 2008.

    First, here are some quotes from that article in which I supported Twitter…

    “For those who are spending their time on “social activities” anyway, Twitter can be a more efficient way to do it.”

    “Email deliverability is at an all-time low, and a service such as Twitter could be just the ticket to growing a highly responsive list of followers.”

    “Friends are worth infinitely more than money, and in that regard social networking is a way to leverage the internet to gain a wealth of friends.”

    I still agree with those points. But the main intention of that article was to ask the question…

    Does Twitter provide a good return on investment for your time?

    And that’s still my question today.

    For some marketers, the answer will be “yes”. For others, it will be “no”.

    Perhaps I need to put some special emphasis on one word in that sentence…

    Does Twitter provide a good return on investment for YOUR time?

    The most hardcore of Twitter supporters may argue that those who haven’t yet realized a good “Twitter ROI” simply aren’t doing it right, or that they haven’t reached that level yet.

    And for some Twitter users, that would be correct. Obviously we’re still learning about the power of Twitter, and even among Internet marketers, many have not yet tried it.

    But I’m not convinced that Twitter is for everyone, and my reasoning actually boils down to an innate human characteristic rather than merely return on investment.

    Here’s an analogy to set up the claim I’m about to make…

    Sylvie Fortin likens Twitter to a big “cocktail party”.

    Are cocktail parties good networking opportunities for doing business? Certainly. And I’ve done plenty of good networking at cocktail parties…

    BUT… I sure wouldn’t want to go to a cocktail party EVERY DAY. Especially not a big one… and especially not one as big as Twitter.

    I get tired out when I spend time in big groups. It’s overwhelming to my senses.

    I’d much rather have a few people over to my house for dinner.

    But some people WOULD like to go to cocktail parties every night. They are highly social people. Those people thrive on it, and their brain can handle the simultaneous connections. My brain tends to get overloaded. I have a one-track mind, and I am not good at multi-tasking.

    I’ve seen some research lately to support the theory that Twitter is not good for everyone.

    According to researcher Mary Helen Immordino-Yang,

    “For some kinds of thought, especially moral decision-making about other people’s social and psychological situations, we need to allow for adequate time and reflection.”

    In other words, our brain may not be designed to build relationships the way they are built on Twitter (maybe Twitter users’ brains have evolved? LOL). But seriously, that’s coming from scientists, not from me.

    But I speak for myself personally when I say that spending a lot of time on the Internet, and constantly being bombarded by its data, can dull your moral compass. In that regard, Twitter’s constant stream of information is sort of like the Internet on steroids. I’m not saying it’s turned me into an immoral person, but it does affect my thoughts and attitudes.

    One way I would describe it is that I’ve felt “weird” after spending a lot of time on Twitter. It sort of puts me in a state of mind that I don’t like to be in.

    But obviously, not everyone reacts that way, which is why Twitter seems to be a better fit for some people than others.

    Again, diehard Twitter supporters might say that I still don’t “get it.”

    Man, if I had a nickel for every time I’ve seen that phrase used in regard to Twitter.

    I get it. I really do. I used to not get it, but after spending time on Twitter and researching it, I get it.

    There’s such a distinct faction of people who “get it” vs. those who don’t, that it reminds me of the Emperor’s New Clothes (maybe not the best analogy). Those who are the Twitter insiders see its value, and most who are on the outside fail to see its value.

    But I see its value, and I understand how the value is derived. I get it.

    This might be the most politically correct and secularly tolerant thing I’ve ever said on this blog, but here’s my conclusion:

    Do what feels right for you.

    If Twitter is working for you, and you like it, then it’s a great tool for you to use.

    If you haven’t tried Twitter, consider giving it a try.

    If you’ve tried it and hate it, maybe you and Twitter are not the best fit.

    Where does that leave me?

    As an Internet marketing teacher, I’m in a unique position. It’s vital for marketers to “stay ahead of the curve”. And since Twitter may prove to be an important tool over the long run, I think it’s important for me to stay involved so that I can inform marketers about it.

    I probably won’t tweet very often, and I won’t engage in many conversations. I realize that such an approach will dramatically decrease the effectiveness of my Twitter account. However, I prefer to focus my time on the two-way conversations that I have with my true followers here on my blog.

    I understand the power of building relationships on the web as a marketing strategy. I’ve made a lot of money as a result of it…

    But I prefer to have my friends meet me here in my own “home” where I control the conversation, rather than in a raging cocktail party with a million conversations going on at once.

    Call me an old fashioned blogger 😉

    What are your thoughts about Twitter, and/or the results of my survey? Please leave your comments below.

    Have a great day!

  • 181 thoughts on “The State of Twitter: Thriving but Not for Everyone

    1. Rick

      Thanks for all the work Eric to give us an objective appraisal. It seems like every other day I get some note from one of the so-called gurus about how I need to be tweeking which I’ve resisted at the gut level though I too was beginning to wonder if I should be more involed with it. Now I feel like all of us that have resisted another demand upon our time have been vindicated. Thanks again.

    2. Debbie Ducic

      Great and mostly unbiased information about Twitter, Eric! You did a really good job at putting this all together and yes, it looks like you did ALOT of work…adding massive value to your subscribers, as usual.

      Just wanted to say that with all of the hype and “showmanship” out there, you are definitely NOT an internet marketer that people have to take with a grain of salt. I for one appreciate your honesty and integrity (and all your hard work).

      I will definitely be Tweeting the URL for this article to my foll0wers (Ahhhh…see a small benefit to us both as you may get some new traffic here and I present great information and resources to my followers 😉
      Thank You!

      aka Gutzy Woman

    3. Paul Antczak

      Thanks Eric, this has given my poor battered brain even more to ponder.
      I have read Joel’s book and countless articles and I still do not understand Twitter. Whenever I have clicked on a link to go to Twitter I have generally found pointless drivel which leaves me wondering why anyone would bother to read it.
      Of course, I have been tempted to join just because I keep being told that I should. I go there have a look then chicken out. Maybe it is, as you have described it, like a cocktail party. I have, thankfully, never been to a cocktail party in my life. The parties which I could not avoid have been some of the most tedious and surreal moments of my life. Parties seem to be packed full of people boasting about themselves, pretending to be something which they are not and often lying their heads off in order to make a conquest. Yup! Sounds a bit like Twitter.
      For the moment I think that I will stick to the accidental little blog I recently started as a way of documenting some of the template and feed problems I was having while preparing the blog I really want to write. I posted the solutions that I had worked out as a way of storing them for future reference but soon found that others from around the world were using my solutions, thanking me for them and asking for other problems to be sorted out.
      For me that is what the web should be about: sharing knowledge and helping others. There are plenty of people out there, like yourself, who freely give their time to help others and not just to make money. That is the way it should be, although money would definitely be a nice bonus.

    4. Rodney

      Great work Eric!

      My Twitter account has gone viral, I am getting two to three new followers a day for the last 3 months and I don’t even log into it. I just find it meaningless, but then again if I focus on it as a social madium, not business it seems to work very well. I have been living in areas where I dod not have consistent internet quality but now in Vietnam it very good so will get back to it soon.

      Very well done on the Survey!


    5. Anonymous

      Eric — you have done it again! You have out done yourself and helped the massess to better understand the Tweet, Twitter, and the many reasons that we Tweet. Thank you so much!

    6. Tony

      Hi Eric, great post you amaze me with your research, it’s been on point all the time I’m also not a great fan on twitter but if is working for some else why not keep trying, your breakdown on your survey on twitter its great!!!! I myself believe in old fashion values but again great work until next time.

    7. Paul Perry

      Hey Eric You have put a lot of work into this mate. And some interesting results, I have not tryed to make money from twitter but going from your results a lot of people are.

    8. Andrew Srinarayan

      Hi Eric,

      Excellent job with the survey!

      In my personal opinion, Twitter is ideal for celebrities and for social network building.

      In order for Twitter to provide a positive business ROI, marketers should be in a position of proficiency in their respective niches.

      My 2 cents …


    9. Cindy Mullins

      You’ve confirmed once again why Eric’s Tips is a valuable place to spend one’s time online. Sincere thanks for your efforts and insights on the survey, Eric. As Steve said, this is an “outstanding contribution to the internet community.”

      I’ve followed internet trends since 1991, when I first encountered what I knew then would change the world (and that was pre-GUI when every command was typed on the blue screen of … well, you get the horse-and-buggy picture). It’s been an awesome ride since, and social networking is yet another wave to catch, assess, and finesse to suit your purpose — not just to jump on because Oprah did. The salient point in your analysis is that Twitter is not for everyone, and individuals need to decide how best to spend their valuable time.

      As a literary agent and publishing consultant, I research social media to find out how authors and publishers can best use online tools to get their message out, create community, and promote the work they put their blood, sweat, and tears into producing. Each client’s needs are different, and new tools are coming online all the time. Exciting times, indeed.

      Look forward to your collaboration with Joel Comm. I hope the marketers and others who have identified with Twitter early on will keep an open mind about its long-term value, and continue to provide broad, unbiased, and balanced assessments of online tools for their own customers. Keep up the great work, Eric!

    10. Zbigniew Patela, M.Sc.

      Very well done Eric,

      You have done outstanding contribution to many Twitters and Internet users. Thanks for the job well done !!!
      Analyzing your survey data, I can see how much improvement can be done in Twitter itself. The Twitter Owners should read it and used.

      Few month ago, I personally have done some survey using Zetpol Property System not about the Twitter, but using Internet for Marketing in Real Estate Industry. The data we received was shocking as well. These data … plus yours survey show me, how many other people need it now and will need it in near future. So this is the possibility of growing number of Twitters. The Real Estate industry (Realtors) .. they need it … specially now. The problem is true technology knowledge and education. We need to help one each other…

      Regards to all,


    11. marty

      eric that was a lot of work. i took the survey and the largest percentages equaled my answers.i got bfm through your link and was following 1 person mike.(i had only been on twitter for 2 days when your survey came out)I wake up this morning for instance and have 41 more people following when i check my email.I don’t want to just ignore them but i really have more pressing things to it’s off to check what these followers are into and follow or not. thanks for the info have a good day marty

    12. Ed

      Mind boggling twitter survey. Its great way to show new tweet follower’s what they should look for in your pie chart..!
      Great Survey Eric, keep up the great work…


    13. Ray

      Very cool analysis of Twitter. I am probably one of the ones that do 5 – 10 minutes 239 (25.9%)twittering a day. I believe it is a useful tool to write upcoming events, blog posting, salepage and opt ins.

      If you did this all yourself Eric, that is alot of work.

      But I have a feeling you outsourced it.
      But I could be wrong.

      Talking about twitter,
      follow me at

      Have a good day,

    14. Rick Howard

      Hi Eric,
      Again you outdid yourself. You always seem to get involved in an issue 125% and seek out an ultimate answer. The problem I see with Twitter
      is most people are involved for the wrong reasons. As a “social” site it should be social and I, in my humble opinion, think that it should be left at that. As with any site that has a large following, Internet Marketers will find a way to use it to their advantage and try to make money.I still think the jury is out on how much impact Twitter will have on the whole
      marketing picture. If used wrong this could be nothing more than cheap spam.
      I myself am going to take a back seat,with an open mind and see what happens.Thank you again for a very informative article.Bravo!

      Rick Howard

      PS.Isigned up for Twitter but for sheer lack of time left it alone.

    15. julian

      Great research on twitter! I think twitter is a great suppliment to other marketing activities. Nothing can ever compare to true relationships. Great job!

    16. Eric Post author

      Hi Debbie, just checked your blog, nice to see you’re living a dream and rocking down under.

    17. Elaine

      I participated in your survey and am not surprised to see the results posted here.

      Twitter is just one part of the social media circus. I imagine it attracts a lot of newbie marketers because the price is right!

      Your survey results prove Twitter isn’t going to perform well for internet marketers until they understand “best practices.”

      I’m sure everyone who took your survey was looking for specific results. I was looking to see how many of your respondents (marketers & entrepreneurs) actually use Twitter as an opportunity for engagement.

      Roughly 61% admit to reading fewer than half the posts. Since 87% claim to be on Twitter less than a half hour, this is understandable. Two thirds claim that their primary reason for being on Twitter is for business. That would indicate that they are sending out Tweets and not bothering to engage by following others’ links and reTweeting good information.

      This is confirmed by the 55% who said they didn’t know if other people’s Tweets were valuable or not—a sure sign they aren’t engaged in Twitter but merely spamming their own message.

    18. Colin Noden

      Hi Eric, Back in town and missed your survey ( and no I didn’t tweet my leaving…see twitter as a potential source for enterprising burglers).
      I like Sylvie’s description of twitter as a cocktail party. I’ve used it to get ideas and opinions from a wide variety of people that I would never have encountered in daily life.

      But I’m also like you in that I find the constant dinging of updates quite distracting. I only have it on when doing email reading.

      I see how some marketers have incorporated Twitter into their overall strategy and are succeeding. But some neophytes are doing themselves a huge disservice, and perhaps lasting damage, in their blunt approaches.

      Twitter can be Haiku in a master’s hand or messy graffiti in a sales hungry beginner’s.

      Sorry for the long post. Will we be conditioned to only read 140 characters at a time? Just like TV’s 12 second angle shots?


    19. Larry

      Awesome work Eric
      I recently became a “twit” hoping to get people to our site Christianbuyernet where you can help feed the hungry simply buy shopping.
      Can’t tell yet if it works or not.
      Thanks Larry

    20. Karen Elizabeth

      If spending time on Twitter makes you feel ‘weird’, best not to go down that slippery slope. Crowd energy bombards us on many levels, some apparent and others more subtle, yet that negative drain of power may last long after you have left the scene.

      I know from your posts and following you for these past few years that you have a healthy ethical and moral code. Others may not be as strong

      In my own case I use the Internet primarily to do research for my information products. Twitter posts are so much scattered energy that I do not find them useful at all. But then I would rather have a root canal than go to a cocktail party!

      I am glad that others can use Twitter to their advantage, and also that we don’t all have to use the latest platforms to be able to get full value from the Internet.

      No Tweets for me please.

      Karen Elizabeth

    21. Mark

      Hi Eric,
      It appears your survey results have hit the spot and are spot on! Like everyone here we can now see the value of research before getting into a niche etc.
      I am one of the non users on Twitter but because of your interest in it I opened an account. At This phase of my online career I don’t have a lot of time to waste on obviously marginal marketing areas for beginners, and since opening the account I have only checked it once. Although I noticed you are now following me on Twitter!
      Having said that I do see the value in it and as I start to climb the ladder of online success I may revisit Twitter as a marketing option. But right now as you have said one thing at a time…..focus….focus…focus.
      I would like to add some food for thought in regards to social networking. How does the social side of these networking sites relate to demographics, such a male female and young and old?
      I will hazard a guess that the younger ones are more interested in expanding their socializing and can do it at the lightning speed they are more use to (instant gratification kids) than do the older users trying to tighten and focus their social networks to more valuable circles. In any case it would have been interesting to include age and gender in your survey.
      One other thing to ponder is the relevance of the term “friend”. When I was growing up I was taught that there was a big difference between a “friend” and an “acquaintance”. That distinction seems to have become blurred in social networking!

      Eric, I believe in you as an online marketer and your lessons have been the best formatted and most informative. You are a great source for anyone learning the business…..keep it up!


    22. Martyn Boaden

      Eric – that is an EXCELLENT survey. EVERYONE seems to be saying that you MUST Twitter if you want to build a list as an online marketer. But my view is you need to build a list of people who are specifically INTERESTED in your product or service. Not just a list of people whose ONLY interest is to add you to their list in return. I don’t Twitter and don’t intend to. Your survey supports what I suspected – that my time would be better spent elsewhere. I think every online marketer who uses Twitter to build their list should calculate their earnings from Twitter and decide if it is worth their while.

    23. Sara

      As usual, your information is detailed as well as interesting. A massive effort all for us. You are a true teacher!
      I haven’t had time to tweet over the last month, yet I still get followers, some good some not so. I still believe that over time a list of true followers interested in a twitterer’s product is very possible. It’s like any form of marketing, it takes time to build your targeted list!
      I always read your newsletters and store them if I don’t have time. Thanks for all your efforts.

    24. Carolina

      thanks for the info…appreciate your efforts into informing your followers/students…

    25. Richard

      A great deal of effort you have gone to Eric I am not surprised due to your methodical nature I have noticed. I believe Twitter provides me with contacts to online successful individuals I would otherwise not know. This is good. I read other people I follows points and surf the websites and do find really cool stuff. Just this morning I watched a video of the current changes (negative)going on with Youtube. I am in the process of uploading affiliate products on the attraction of video marketing so I left my comment. Had it not been for a twitter follow directing me to this current topic I may have missed the opportunity to express my concerns. So Twitter has its benefits for information sharing as well as other uses. Thanks for the opportunity of your findings.

    26. Paul

      Hi Eric,
      I have over 6000 followers but I believe people just skim Twitter looking for things of very direct interest.
      I see Twitter as a good sounding boarding to get trickles of traffic for niches I am involved in.Appreciate all of your work on this one.

    27. Wayne

      WOW Eric, that was some master piece of data collecting. Stayed up a few nights on that one I bet. LOL. I for one am glad you did that survey. I have been using twitter now for 3 months and have not noticed any change in the traffic to my sites. So, I have been wondering if it was really worth the time to mess with it. Now I know. Thank You!

    28. Mari

      I must admit, I’m relieved beyond words to see the outcome of your survey, and then also reading your thoughts on this matter.

      Not being much of a social networking type myself, and not using twitter on a regular basis, I had thought I was the odd one out and that all hope for me as an Internet Marketer was lost. (OK, that’s stating it a little strongly, but seriously, after reading what some Twitter evangelists have to say…)

      Thank you so much for the time and energy you put into this. 🙂

    29. Harry Crowder

      Hi Eric,

      Amazing results and I am sure an amazing amount of work went into your survey.

      I think the appeal of Twitter is the quickness you can have in using it.

      I think it is a great way to connect with other people online and perhaps too many people are doing the same thing on twitter they do in their online marketing – trying to sell the prospect at first site!! This is wrong and not very appealing to the Twitter recipient.. people need to know you , like you, and T R U S T you before they will buy from you.

      So, please all you hyperactive Twitter users out there – don’t say thanks for following me and then try to sell me something – give me a reason I should follow you and then later I may buy what you have .. if I am interested!

      Anyway, great insights as usual Eric.

      Best regards,


    30. Internetsalsa

      How long did it take for you to prepare this data?
      I m wondering how many of you went through this article. If people don’t have time to tweet –will they have time to read this article?
      But anyways—good job in getting this survey..I think its too long.

      p.s. People do abuse and take advantage of media..

    31. Jonathan Lake

      Hi Eric,

      Excellent survey. As for its length? I believe that a report/review is as long as it needs to be – there should not be a prescribed length. For an extensive and extremely informative survey like yours, I believe that the report would have held readers interest right to the end – as it did me.
      As usual, I was not dissappointed by your output – as my dear old dad says “if a jobs worth doing, its worth doing well!”
      Keep up the great work Eric


    32. taural

      thank you very much for this well prepared and very informative article. I’m going to tweet it to my followers right now!

    33. Tracey

      I commend your thoroughness – and dedication to giving great value to your followers … er I mean list 😉 as always.

      I started using Twitter in June 2008, simply as an experiment, seeing how little work it would take to grow a following. Through posting 160 or so updates over 10 months (approx 1 every 2 days, taking 2 or 3 minutes) I now have over 300 followers… but little or no monetisation.

      I know I provide interesting updates, and I have read some very interesting posts, but for me it probably won’t go much further than that as it takes more time than I want to devote to it for the moment.

      This is sort-of confirmed by the survey results – very interesting!
      Thanks again, and well done as always. I’ll be blogging (and possibly twittering 😉 ) about this post!

      kind regards
      Tracey, The Simple Web Company

    34. Pingback: Eric Holmlund’s Massive Twitter Survey

    35. Louis

      Wow Eric job well done. I kind of think the way you do. My biggest problem is finding time to spend on Twitter. It’s really hard within that time to read twits as well as twitting. It just seems like the relationship people have is kind of up in the air and really not a close relationship. What do you think?

    36. barry

      I started Twitter a couple of weeks ago maybe 3/4 and I have found that if you are a people person you will be fascinated by the variety of folks on twitter, it becomes addictive,, then common sense has to creep in and you start to ration your time on twitter, the next step is to test it out 4 marketing, not many people are being successful here. But that doesnt mean its no good , it could just mean that a slightly different approach is needed. So many folks just do the same old thing and then moan when it doesn’t work. Come on folks, imagination

    37. Alan Weiss

      Someone on my blog, where I’ve been questioning the utility of social media in terms of business generation for consultants, recommended your survey to me. I want to congratulate you on a great piece of research, though it takes longer to read it than to tweet (just kidding!). Nice work. People want ego-pleasing air time, but this is no way to make a living.

    38. Gus Dempsey

      Hi Eric:
      Great info. Thanks for the info on Twitter. that’s why your followers including myself reguard you as an inspiration in their lives. You do teach us soooooooo much.

    39. Beat Schindler

      Impressed by the width and depth of the research – thanks for the freebie sharing! In my mind, this research result sums it up nicely:
      How many visitors to your website (s) do you receive from Twitter?
      More than 101 per day (1.8%)
      How much money do you make as a direct result of Twitter?
      More than $101 per month (4.5%)
      These numbers confirm the (in)famous “5% rule,” i.e. what you find in most success related studies: 5% will be successful (mastery level) of which 1% will be grotesquely so (the Midas touch). The question for twitterers, do you want to be a 5-percenter or 95-percenter? Your research results go a long way to opening the door to the 5%. Cheers, Beat

    40. Karen Cole

      Eric: Talk about offering value! There is so much twittering about twitter that it is easy to be sucked in to the hype. You helped us take a step back and look at the big picture. I enjoy Twitter but your stats supported my own intuition – goes right back to “all things in moderation”.

    41. Luca

      Hi Eric,

      Great job. I think is a post to read over again to get all the data that you put together. The results are not very surprising as it looks like people are split in certain areas. I have been using it and my numbers keep going up even though I’m not doing anything to get followers except for posting to twitter.

      I find it a difficult to build a relationship on twitter unless as you said send a direct @message. It just looks like eveyone is out for themselves and that’s o.k. but I was hoping for something a little more personal.

      I’ll keep up with it as it does give my blog a little jump everytime I update.

      Thanks again Eric and I look forward to your joint report with Joel

    42. John O Gilmore Jr

      Eric, thanks for this!

      There is already too much static on the line! No time for Love. No time to consider the serious issues that we face. No time to focus.

      I see the potential for institutional propaganda and communication.

      But, do you really want your surgeon to stop in the middle of your heart surgery and tweet an update to ANYBODY?

      I also see the potential for a massive “call to arms” – in a time of crisis or issue of national, state or local importance. I just don’t see enough people who would pay attention or care enough to respond. Not now anyway. (Maybe someday when enough people realize that, in order for our government to work, we actually have to govern ourselves.)

      It would be wonderful, though, if I found myself in a world where all this potential became truly useful and meaningful and not just another diversionary toy.

      Or just more static on MY line!

    43. Joe

      Good info Eric. I found that Twitter most of my followers are actually advertising their own products and they come from a wide segment of products, mostly out of sync with mine. So much about its hype but seems to me Facebook and other social sites have more advantages over Twitter.

    44. InternetSalsa

      Hello Louis…First try to decide why you wanna use twitter. You don’t want to jump into something just because you read it (even from expert). Eric did a good job here but its up to you decide whether Twitter will be useful for you. Yes Twitter seems easy and its easy but it really depends on your purpose. But at the same time, if you have time to read this blog which is useful as well, you shouldn’t have any problem about the time you spent on Twitter. But again–depends on your motive/purpose…

    45. Susan Livingstone

      What a relief to hear a high profile marketer finally say this. I personally see NO advantage in Twitter, although, as you say in your conclusions, it’s perfectly possible that I just don’t “get it”. But I’ve known all my life that I’m not a particularly sociable person – I hate parties, for example – so the idea that I couldn’t really make a decent living off the Internet without diving into and dominating the whole social networking thing depressed the hell out of me.

      So my tweets are confined to updates whenever I post to my blogs. I have no idea if anyone sees these tweets or gives a rat’s patooty about them. Your survey gives me hope that not caring doesn’t matter.

      So thanks for making this effort and sharing the results!

      Susan Livingstone

    46. Alex

      Great job Eric!

      I translated this work to Russian for my readers (sure with link to you)


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