Friday, January 09, 2009

Twitter "Re-Tweet" Survey Results

Just before the holidays, Rick Osborne and I got into a discussion about using Twitter to promote blog posts and other writings. As we went back and forth, I came upon the idea of doing a poll to see what other tweeters thought on the subject. 

It would have been nice to have more responses. But, I think there's a good enough cross section of users to get a good idea of how folks feel about the subject.

Here are the results:

How Many Times A Day Do You Check Twitter?

1-3 Times A Day14%
3-5 Times A Day7%
5-10 Times A Day21%
10-20 Times A Day14%
I'm On Twitter All Day On My Computer24%
I'm On Twitter All Day On My Smart Phone/PDA3%
I Really Don't Know/Varies Per Day17%

How Many Tweeters Do You Follow?
One to Fifty28%
51 - 10021%
101 - 20014%
201 - 30010%

When You Check Twitter, How Many Posts Do You Read?
First Page (20 Tweets) Only52%
2-3 Pages (40-60 Tweets)
3-5 Pages (60-100 Tweets)3%
As far back as it takes to pick up where I last left off26%

If someone has many followers (over 500), knows those followers are on at different times of the day and wanted to promote a blog post, new web site feature, or other such thing, at what point would you consider multiple tweets as tweet spam?

1 Tweet Every 4 Hours41%
1 Tweet Every 3 Hours
1 Tweet Every 2 Hours10%
1 Tweet Every Hour24%
More than one tweet is spam - period10%

Here are some of the comments:

I think identifying it as a 're-tweet' helps with the spaminess of it. For me, I don't go too far back since tweets are generally time sensitive and quickly lose relevance. If someone's postings were so important that I couldn't miss one, I might setup device updates so I would get an e-mail or sms notification of it. (That's kind of up to me to decide, not the person who wants me to read their blog ;-| ).
Twitter is a social networking tool. People follow each other because they're interested in networking and sharing content. If Twitter came up with a way that you could notify all of your followers of something new there would be no need 4 multiple tweets. However until that happens multiple tweets R needed. What I find annoying is when most and/or all the tweets coming from someone R all commercials - that's spam 2 me. Multi-tweet but twitter, connect and converse even more. : )
I'm not bothered by people re-tweeting their stuff. I won't follow someone who only tweets the same thing over and over again
I think Twitter usage changes depending on the client you use. Since changing to Tweetdeck from Twitterific, my usage is more focused.
I didn't know the reason people Retweeted their own posts. Now I do and I understand Rick's reasoning. I don't follow too many people, so the RT's aren't too bad. If I felt that's all someone was doing, RT'ing their own posts all day, I might stop following them. But I haven't seen anyone exclusively TR themselves.
If something's so crucial that Followers in different time zones might miss it if not RTed, I suggest the Blogger should send them a DM. S(he) might also encourage their Followers to RSS his/her Blog to avoid spamming the rest of us.

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