Is Twitter About to Make a Huge Mistake?

Social Pros Podcast with Mark Schaefer

Mark Schaefer, Executive Director of Schaefer Marketing Solutions and faculty member at Rutgers University, joins the Social Pros Podcast this week to discuss the increasing complexity of the internet, the future of social media in the larger scheme of the marketing world, and Twitter’s latest attempt to gain users.

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Full Episode Details

An Twitter Algorithm for Twitter

Recently there have been rumors that Twitter is planning to implement an algorithm for the way it presents content: rather than a straight timeline that publishes every single update in reverse chronological order, Twitter would display a sorted newsfeed based on perceived relevance of the content.

Mark is the co-host of marketing podcast The Marketing Companion and author of The Tao of Twitter: Changing Your Life and Business 140 Characters at a Time, so the changing pulse of Twitter is familiar to him.

As a public company, Twitter has to sustain growth every quarter. “What’s the number one obstacle?” Mark asks, “Twitter is difficult to use. It doesn’t have a great interface, it’s very perplexing for people, and I think that’s what’s driving this.” Perhaps if they can help weed through some of the noise with a good algorithm, they’ll be able to entice more users.

The Tao of Twitter by Mark SchaeferOf course, the small outcry that has come in response to this announcement is from the social pros who know that Twitter will use this algorithm to “put the squeeze” on organic reach, just like Facebook has. In order to reach all of your followers, you’ll have to pay for a sponsored tweet.

But in social media, we know that we are building on the big guy’s land, and expecting that land to continue to be free seems like naivete now.

In some ways, this change could be good for businesses on Twitter. Today, “if you put something on Twitter, it’s pretty much like throwing a bottle into the ocean. You don’t really know who’s going to see it or if they’re going to see it.” Businesses may find that they have a more reliable reach when their tweets are sorted by relevance.

Social Media Number of the Week: 10

As of this year, the Cleveland Browns have gone a record-breaking number of seasons (10) without winning their opening game.

And yet the Browns still sell out, they still have fans and a strong social media presence. “It’s indicative,” Jeff says, “that you’ve really got to know your industry to understand how social applies to it, because you don’t necessarily need a great product on the field.”

See you next week!

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