Introducing A New Sort-Of Twitter (More Than 140 Characters Allowed!)

Posted: February 1st, 2010

Photo by Jeffjose (Flickr)

Photo by Jeffjose (Flickr)

I’m really excited that I recently discovered a new “app” as a part of my social media arsenal. Yes, you got it; something new and different that rivals Twitter. OK, it’s no so new, but it is effective.

Don’t get me wrong; Twitter is a great tool and all, but sometimes I just want to cut to the chase and converse with those that are of interest to me as a freelancer and in my business. With Twitter, I usually get sidetracked enough with unrelated links that it somewhat defeats its purpose.

Besides, I’m a little tired of clicking on to pictures of cats and half-eaten breakfasts already.

So before I reveal what this incredible new tool is, let me give you some of its advantages over Twitter.

1. No follower counts (and insecurity with your unpopularity).

Finally there is no need worry that you have 136 followers while the average number of followers of those following you is somewhere in the tens of thousands. Not that it mattered anyway, but this is no longer an issue.

Ah, who am I kidding? We all look at that count each and every day and look up those users that hit the unfollow button on us. The swine.

Now, though, we can all be created equal and our fragile egos can be saved.

2. Communicate directly to the gurus and experts that would never consider following you.

Have you ever RT’d or sent a tweet to one of those “popular” users in hopes of getting his attention?

Then waited…

Not a thank you tweet in sight. Probably didn’t even notice. He still hasn’t followed you back for God sake.

Wouldn’t it be nice to send a message to him and then he gets back to you? Well, it may happen some of the time but better than being completely ignored.

3. No more 140 character limits.

You are free to write 141, 280, 560 characters or, gasp, multiple paragraphs. Finally say what is on your mind and don’t leave out one single detail. You can even throw in that photo of your cat eating breakfast (though not recommended).

4. Steal traffic from other websites to yours.

Sure, Twitter is a great way to bring traffic to your website. More traffic couldn’t hurt, right? It’s especially true if you can “borrow” it from other websites with a lot more traffic.

Yes, there is a little greed factor here.

5. Meet others with similar interests.

I personally hate following a user that seems to be interesting but finding only nothing but tweets about Jersey Shore and cats coming from his feed.


None of that here. Filter out the crap and save yourself the unfollow time.

So What Is It?

It’s nothing you haven’t heard of before. In fact, you may have used “it” but without realizing its full potential.

Introducing… [drumroll] the blog comment.

How many times of you read a really good blog post, bookmarked it, tweeted a link to it and printed it out but never left a comment telling the author how good it was along with a reflective thought?

Nothing flatters an author more (even the popular ones too) than noticing that his readers are influenced by his or her work. Plus you get a little something in return by leaving a link to your blog or website along with your picture (by getting a Gravatar).

Instant branding… just like with Twitter.

Just remember to be sincere and leave a thought provoking response. That might be just enough to get that author’s attention and have him visit your website. Maybe he’ll even like what he sees on your website and recommend you to his friends.

Sure beats waiting for him to follow you on Twitter.

More on the author, Johnny Spence
Johnny is the founder of The Freelance Rant and a freelance web programmer with 8 years in the business. Have a visit at his company Oscarrr!web or see what he's up to on Twitter.

2 Comments. Join In!

  • Jon Buscall

    February 3rd, 2010 at 10:38 am

    Such a good point, J. I do think the emergence of micro-blogging has had a negative effect on blog commenting. There seem to be less of them nowadays. Or at least, on a lot of sites.

    I get so frustrated when you see “23 comments” and when you scroll down the page you find 21 RTs and just one real comment.

    It’s like we’re all too busy to have an opinion other than just retweeting a tweet on Twitter. The echo chamber.
    .-= Jon BuscallĀ“s last blog ..Annette Schwindt on Facebook for Business =-.

  • Johnny

    February 3rd, 2010 at 6:26 pm

    You know Jon, I really noticed that with Twitter you may follow someone or someone follows you and there is usually an initial rapport. It rarely gets followed up and, instead, those followers get drowned out amongst the others in your feed.

    That’s why blog commenting is so great. You interact directly with those you want to and eventually get around to interacting with them on Twitter anyway if there is good rapport.