Twitter, the popular microblogging social media site, has undoubtedly become a successful marketing tool for many individuals and businesses out there. It allows resource sharing, promotion of timely services/products/information, branding, networking and much more. So what’s up with TwitHalk?
Well, it’s Twitter’s relatively new targeted marketing engine developed by Chris Duell. In the article, “Developers Doin’ it Right: Chris Duell of TwitHawk,” by Jason on oneforty.com, Duell said his intention was to “…create something that would put the tweet right in front of the people you want to see it, and have a simple and time saving way to find new leads.” He wanted a more specific way of finding an audience on Twitter, so that’s just what he did. TwitHawk is a paid ($.05 per tweet) targeted marketing engine that allows you to find an audience based on topic and location. And after already reaching 250,000 tweets, Duell must have done something right!
As Ochs demonstrated in the video, you have the option to manually send the message rather than having Twitter automatically deliver it. Though he recommended auto send, I don’t.
I like the example that Guy Kawasaki used in his blog, “TwitterHalk: No Guts, No Story,” to show how automatically sending a message based on keywords could be problematic. Basically, he said that if you are an Audi dealership trying to acquire new business from people tweeting about an Audi, you wouldn’t want your tweet ending up with someone who posted a message saying how many problems their Audi gave them and how happy they are to have gotten rid of it. This shows how easy it is to completely miss the target audience if you’re not careful.
Another blogger, Len Gutman, experienced a negative side of TwitHawk when he received a political message via this new engine. Gutman said in his blog, “From the ‘know your audience’ files…” that he felt “a little violated by TwitHalk.” He said that just because he was in the particular politician’s district at the time certainly does not mean he lives there. Plus, how does that politician know he agrees? As previously mentioned, this annoyance could be caused by automatically sending out messages without reviewing them.
I can see how TwitHawk could be used in a many beneficial way by individuals and companies alike, but I do think you should use it with caution. Once you annoy an audience, the likelihood of being listened to is slim.
What do you think about this, and/or how do you think it could be improved?