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Twitter for Beginners Part 15 -Twitter is Officially Mainstream

I love sports.  I watch ESPN and listen to sports talk radio on a daily basis.  Last week, while watching and listening, a non-sports-related thought occurred:  Twitter is officially mainstream.

The actual story revolved around the “karma is a b” tweet that was sent from LeBron James’s Twitter account.  It struck me that not only was a tweet a source of news, but I had noticed either a mention of Twitter or the reading of Tweets on several shows.

When I thought about it, it also occurred to me that it had been a while since I had heard a comment along the lines of “Why would I want to know that someone is having coffee?” with regards to Twitter.  It may be a delayed acknowledgement, but it seems that Twitter has arrived.  Looking back, it’s been over a year that I’ve been identifying Twitter as one of the Big Five of Social Media for B2B (blog, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and YouTube).

Last night at #tweetdiner we were discussing the differences between Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn and sharing our perceptions on each platform’s etiquette and how we use the platforms.  For me, they break down this way:  LinkedIn is a business network for me.  Facebook is a collection of friends, family and friendly business associates.  Twitter is more of an open house.

Twitter is the water cooler, the gate at the airport, happy hour at the bar, the reception at the conference.  I am very liberal in my follows – the more, the merrier.  Twitter is relaxed.  It’s also a place for learning, sharing, asking questions, enjoying sports, TV and other events with people you may not know.  It’s noisy, valuable and fun.

With Facebook and LinkedIn, I am far more selective in those I chose to follow/friend/connect.  The communication is of a slightly different nature on Facebook and a drastically different nature on LinkedIn.

If Twitter is a loose conference call, LinkedIn is a boardroom meeting where you wear your suit.  Each platform continues to evolve and deliver useful information and communication.  Last week, LinkedIn sent me a message that in the past year 25% of my network had changed jobs – amazing.

In what ways have you used these platforms?  Do you segment your network by platform?  Have you found new uses?  Have you begun using one more than another?  Please share your experience and thoughts in the comments section.

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