Twitter Still for Old People, Gen Y Says

By June 01, 2009

So it looks like Twitter’s still not catching on with the kids. While 99 percent of Gen Y respondents in new study are on social networks, only 22 percent use Twitter. “This is a classic ‘glass half full’ scenario for Twitter because it’s clear that Gen Y has an appetite for social networking, but still hasn’t fully embraced micro-blogging,” said Michael Della Penna, co-founder and Executive Chairman of Participatory Marketing Network, which conducted the study along with Pace University's Lubin School of Business' Interactive and Direct Marketing (IDM). “There is a tremendous opportunity now for marketers to develop strategies to get this important group active on Twitter too,” Della Penna said.

The study results were announced at TWTRCON ’09 in San Francisco, the first conference dedicated solely to Twitter as a business model.

“Twitter dominates the news, but clearly we’re only touching the surface of its potential as a marketing vehicle,” Della Penna said.

Twitter has become second only to company blogs as social-media business tools, according to a small, informal study by MarketingProfs.

Eighty-four percent of responding businesses -- mainly small businesses -- said they would be ramping up their microblogging efforts in the next six months.

"This data shows that Twitter users, typically early adopters, no longer think of Twitter as just a personal networking tool, but as something that can provide real value for their company or business," said Ann Handley, chief content officer for MarketingProfs.

"Much like Facebook, Twitter is now moving into the business mainstream," Handley said.

Forty-one percent of respondents said that Twitter was a “great value” for their company. On the survey’s five-point scale, 52 percent rated corporate blogs “great value,” while 25 percent gave the same ranking to LinkedIn. Facebook was considered a “great value” by 17 percent of respondents.

Despite Twitter’s traction, some of the surveyed were still skeptical. The microblogging service was considered “not very important” by 29 percent of the survey’s respondents.

They must have been Gen Y.

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