…the title is very misleading I assure you. Ha! I wanted to share and indeed give some sort of progress report on my blossoming love affair with this social media tool they call ‘Twitter’. I have to thank my dear sister for helping (well actually pushing) me join Facebook initially. Having said that though, I was an original hi5 jammer I must admit but never quite understood how this sort ‘online interaction’ was ever going to add real value to my life. Ha funny how that sounds now huh? I was young, rich, dangerous and naïve then. Now, well now I know. I have ‘met’ some very interesting and wonderful people whose daily musings I look forward to. Some inspire my very blog entries and many blog themselves – some extremely funny and thought provoking blogs I might add.
I came across Twitter early last year, this time without the assistance of ‘dear sister’. I ventured out on my own and signed up as you do. It wasn’t until the second half of the year that I started to interact more with other Zimbabweans a.k.a. ‘Twimbos’ (in the Twitter world) that things started to get even more interesting. The Twimbo group and I say ‘group’ is spread across the globe with varying ages, occupations, socio-economic backgrounds and locations. This does present an opportunity for interesting discussions amongst say the ‘Twimbo’ community. Interestingly I believe Twitter has helped Twimbos themselves break down certain barriers (social, economic & otherwise) that exist in the ‘real world’ especially living in Zimbabwe where class still carries significant weight.. These same observations may also be relevant for any other group I belong to I might add. There seems to be a genuine camaraderie amongst ‘my people’ on Twitter. This is one of the aspects that I absolutely love about Lady T.
The other advantage is the ease at which information from all over the world is shared on one open source. I now receive my news updates from Twitter as opposed to the typical mainstream sources I used to use in my past life. I don’t watch as much SKY or BBC news as I used to. I simply follow them on Twitter. I am now able to add their ‘tweets’ to my favourites and read them at my leisure. This applies to any of my interests really. I follow the people and organisations that I want and need taking care to see who they in turn follow just in case this group could be of interest to me. In summary Lady T has been a blessing for our various business projects. This is one of the reasons why I love her so much.
What I find strange is the little attention Zimbabwean and indeed some African businesses pay to social media tools like Twitter and/or Facebook. It is the easiest and cheapest way to keep in touch with their customer base. It ‘really’ doesn’t take that much honestly. A coffee shop/retail outlet could be on both and tweet daily specials or updates and create a loyal following. Research has proven in an experiment conducted on a café in the US that Facebook in this instance didn’t add any new business but rather increased the number of visits by the existing customers. I have spoken to a few social media experts and I have been assured that the trend is changing and soon more Zimbabwean and African businesses/organisations will be in love with social media just as I am. With increased internet connectivity in Africa the trend will certainly shift. I look foward to the future…