LinkedIn or Twitter For Small Businesses? Some Social Media Stats
by Jo Shaer, on February 11, 2013
Great infographic by the online Wall Street Journal on the usefulness of the various social media platforms as they are perceived by small business owners.
Social Media Stats about LinkedIn, Facebook Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube and small business
And it accompanied an article discussing the fact that small business owners find LinkedIn more valuable than Twitter when it comes to helping to promote their business.
Of 835 businesses questioned by The Wall Street Journal and Vistage International this month, just 3% felt that Twitter had the most potentially beneficial to their companies. This compared to 41% in favour of LinkedIn, the social media platform aimed at business people, which came top of the polls.
From my own point of view, it was interesting to Google my own name and see where my Twitter profile came up in comparison to the profiles of the other social media platforms. Working on 'Jo Shaer', whilst Google+ (I was logged in to Google), Pinterest, LinkedIn, Slideshare, YouTube and my business Facebook page came in on the first page behind my own various websites, there was no sign of my Twitter profile on the first ten pages. My websites had totally pushed it off the SERPs for any meaningful position.
Social Media Platforms and SEO
It was not until I tried 'joshaer' as the search term that Twitter came in on the front page. The meta title read LollipopLocalSEO (JoShaer). Now this is most likely because I have JoShaer as the @part of my address. The User name. Whereas most people will have their accounts set up with their real name as, well, the Real Name option. When I first set up my account, you only had one name. So, perhaps Twitter does better when profiles have been set up under the more modern method.
However, I couldn't see any Tweets indexed until page 3 either - and that was a response by someone else to something I had written.
I think the real problem with Twitter is the staccato nature of the shortened interchanges. Only being allowed 140 characters can be quite challenging for many. But, more than that, the nature of Twitter for most of the people that I can see is to acquire followers who become friends, rather than potential customers. There is a lot of chit chat and people try to crowbar in a business link now and again but it doesn't seem quite right in most cases.
I think it can work on an individual basis in that you build a relationship which encourages someone to come to you when they need your service, but not really on the scalable level required to make the effort worth the return on that investment of time.
If you have followed the teaching and ensured that you have targeted followers who are interested in your niche, then you may have better luck in procuring business from this platform but, on the whole, my experience has been that - unless you're working in social media or have some form of media connection, then Twitter might not be the best place to expend your energies for your business.
I would be interested to hear from anyone who has successfully acquired worthwhile business through Twitter from a variety of customers.