If you’re reading this post, then you probably came here via Twitter. You’re on Twitter, I’m on Twitter, but who isn’t on Twitter – or who’s on Twitter, but not really here (meaning inactive). This (slightly snarky) thought process was sparked by reading, 80%+ Twitter accounts inactive, but core users more committed, courtesy of dirkthecow via Social Media Today.
What about me. Twitter can be a great communications tool. It’s been great for me personally and professionally. Caveat: knowing that everyone’s not using Twitter. Knowing who’s using a tool is equally as important as knowing who’s not. Don’t forget who isn’t here to contribute to the conversation – they may have something amazing to contribute, but are voiceless.
And it’s not just Twitter. There are plenty of platforms and tools where folks are missing. For instance, Facebook, yes, there are millions upon millions of users, but who’s missing. For example, me. I don’t have a Facebook account (…really, I don’t). I might have something valuable to say.
Aligning audience and means of communication. Are there voices being left out of the conversation that could add exponential value to your organization, goal or community? Twitter can be used in the execution of a portfolio of communication means to tap into a range of audiences, but that should only happen once audiences have been identified. Have you taken a moment to determine who your audience is – and where they are?
Who’s making the decision. What happens when you don’t take the time to identify where your audience plays, well, you miss an opportunity. Someone misses the message, the chance to be engaged or an invitation to participate (either physically or virtually). Case and point, my ten year high school reunion, the reunion invitation was only sent via Facebook. As I said earlier, I’m not on Facebook. Meaning, I found out about the reunion only after it took place. The point isn’t that I missed the reunion, it’s that I never got a chance to decide for myself if I wanted to attend or not. The means of communication decided for me.
Take the time, do the work. Don’t let voices go unheard or leave communities ignored just because you missed the mark. Take time to understand your audience and then communicate to them in the space where they play. Why should they come to you? If they are that important, then you should go to them. In time, that may reverse, but you have to reach out and cultivate the relationship first.
Tools are going to change, audiences will change too – and where they intersect is going to change. What shouldn’t change is critical thinking around how best to link the two.
Remember, 80% of Twitter accounts are inactive. That’s whole a lot of people not paying attention to those thoughtful, value-filled, community building tweets you’re spending hours crafting. Make sure your audience is where you’re focusing your attention, before you start trying to get the attention of an audience that may not even be there in the first place.