Seth Godin Praises Twitter; Seth's Tweetiquette Critiqued

seth-godin.jpg

Seth Godin recently wrote a warm laudy post about how Twitter is great for building trust, brand equity and ultimately sales. Practically two seconds later, marketing and social media blogger Ryan Kuder wrote Seth an open letter declaring shenanigans.

It's not that Seth is wrong. Twitter is a great relationship development tool. I maintain daily contact with more people on Twitter than I've met in real life over the past year. We pass on streams of thought, as well as links we find interesting or valuable.

Occasionally, that interesting or valuable link brings users to our website. But that isn't only or always the case ... and this is where Ryan raises his complaint.

"I've got a beef with the way you use Twitter," he writes, "Because you don't use it."

"I love discovering your posts via Twitter, but Twitter Seth doesn't follow anyone and as far as I can tell has never sent a message to anyone. It's exclusively a one way relationship. I called out Twitter Seth on this a while ago [...] Since then, I found out that it's not you. Which I actually think is worse because if it's true, you've ceded control of your brand over to someone else.

"You might think that there's no damage being done, but I'd argue that there's a LOT of damage being done. What you've got is 'Seth Godin,' the relationship marketing guru, with your face and everything, out there amongst an audience that is at the forefront of social media and participatory marketing, and you're not participating or being social. While I'm sure everyone loves the updates on your blog posts as much as I do, it misses the point."

Seth's response (at comment #4):

"If I twit, and do it well [...] then what shall I give up? I already don't sleep or comb my hair..."

Ben Kunz at #2 had this to say: "I think use of Twitter should be in or out -- either be real and genuine and personal and put up with the overload spray of microhyperblogger telepathy, or avoid it. Using it solely to push PR about blog posts or books feels plain wrong."

Most Twitter junkies agree, even if Seth makes a good point. Twitter is nothing if not time-consuming, but you can't build relationships on auto-pilot. If you're going to appear at a community gathering, the people who try interacting with you don't want to be reminded that you don't have time for them.

--

Props to WillWheeler for the word "tweetiquette" (Twitter + etiquette). I would otherwise have used "twittiquette" and quietly regretted it for the rest of my life.

by Angela Natividad    Apr-14-08   Click to Comment   
Topic: Good, Online, Opinion, Tools, Trends and Culture   

Enjoy what you've read? Subscribe to Adrants Daily and receive the daily contents of this site each day along with free whitepapers.



Comments



Comments

I totally agree, this is exactly the reason that I removed Seth from my twitter feed.

Posted by: AdvertiseSpace on April 14, 2008 10:50 AM

I don't see any harm in having a Twitter account that just pulls from your blog feed -- after all, people can choose to follow you or not. But in the interests of transparency, Seth should probably have pointed out in his blog that he's not using Twitter himself in the way that he's advocating.

The jury's still out for me about whether Twitter's a timewaster, though. I just devote all the time I used to spend on Facebook to it. :)

Posted by: Jack on April 14, 2008 11:43 AM

On the one hand, it puts a bad taste in my mouth. Social media used in a purely commercial way seems so bad-wrong.

However, I also dig Seth's reply about sleeping/hair combing. When Internet-related activities become a full-time job, it's difficult to know where to draw the line. I've been reading a few articles lately on pro bloggers' health spiraling downward as they chase an up-to-the-bleeding minute news cycle.

Perhaps that was the one good thing about the print era. Sure, the journalists of my childhood (and college years) drank too much, slept too little, and rummaged through the mayor's trashcan from time to time; but at least the news cycle HAD a cycle, not just a constant high tide of information.

Posted by: Jolie on April 14, 2008 11:46 AM

Angela, you should check as it's not really Seth on Twitter. It's only a twitterfeed, with the alias being taken by a "fake Seth Godin".

When i realized that it was an unofficial profile (you just need to check the profile on Twitter), i promptly unfollowed him. That's one of the beauties of Twitter: permission.

Posted by: Armando Alves on April 14, 2008 3:05 PM

Angela, you should check as it's not really Seth on Twitter. It's only a twitterfeed, with the alias being taken by a "fake Seth Godin".

When i realized that it was an unofficial profile (you just need to check the profile on Twitter), i promptly unfollowed him. That's one of the beauties of Twitter: permission.

Oh, just found the proof;
http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2008/02/not-seth-godin.html

Posted by: Armando Alves on April 14, 2008 3:06 PM

I hear that all the time "Twitter is too time consuming to write personal Tweets...". To that I say use Jott. That way you can just speak into the phone and it shows up on Twitter. Easy. No excuses not to update what you are doing.

http://www.jott.com/jott/twitter.html

Participate meaningfully or GTFO

Posted by: Todd on April 15, 2008 6:06 AM

I hear that all the time "Twitter is too time consuming to write personal Tweets...". To that I say use Jott. That way you can just speak into the phone and it shows up on Twitter. Easy. No excuses not to update what you are doing.

http://www.jott.com/jott/twitter.html

Participate meaningfully or GTFO

Posted by: Todd on April 15, 2008 6:07 AM

Wow, I thought the Seth dude was totally consistent, practicing what he was preaching and all.

Thats what I get for putting him on a pedestal. Mr. Godin, you are no longer my permission marketing god.

Posted by: CS Thompson on April 15, 2008 9:36 AM

Wow, I thought the Seth dude was totally consistent, practicing what he was preaching and all.

Thats what I get for putting him on a pedestal. Mr. Godin, you are no longer my permission marketing god.

Posted by: CS Thompson on April 15, 2008 9:37 AM

Hah! I'd use Twitter if I could figure out how to get that piece-of-crap bloatware Vista to stop popping up security warnings on EVERY click (even tho I set Twitter to a trusted site in my IE settings, etc etc)

Posted by: Kevin Horne on April 15, 2008 12:06 PM

I'm not sure if I agree with the all-or-nothing philosophy with twitter. After blogging/podcasting for over two years I recently added Twitter to my blog as a mechanism for mini-blogging in between scheduled updates. I don't follow anyone and I'm not followed by anyone.

Is that Twitter-abuse? Maybe one day I'll get into the social networking aspect of Twitter, but as of now I'm just using it for easy text-based mini-blogging.

Posted by: cody pomeray on April 15, 2008 6:56 PM

You all need to either get a job or stop wasting your employers money.

Posted by: David on April 16, 2008 10:46 AM

"I would otherwise have used "twittiquette" and quietly regretted it for the rest of my life."

LMAO...that was a classic line Angela!

I was looking for Seth on twitter just now and found this post instead. I can't believe he would sit still for this "brandjacking" let alone not want to take part. Even Tim Ferriss engages, although he doesn't follow anyone, from time to time he stays in touch and even replies to a few posts...but at least he's staying in touch.

Posted by: Denny Sugar on November 22, 2008 7:59 PM

"I would otherwise have used "twittiquette" and quietly regretted it for the rest of my life."

LMAO...that was a classic line Angela!

I was looking for Seth on twitter just now and found this post instead. I can't believe he would sit still for this "brandjacking" let alone not want to take part. Even Tim Ferriss engages, although he doesn't follow anyone, from time to time he stays in touch and even replies to a few posts...but at least he's staying in touch.

Posted by: Denny Sugar on November 22, 2008 8:01 PM

"I would otherwise have used "twittiquette" and quietly regretted it for the rest of my life."

LMAO...that was a classic line Angela!

I was looking for Seth on twitter just now and found this post instead. I can't believe he would sit still for this "brandjacking" let alone not want to take part. Even Tim Ferriss engages, although he doesn't follow anyone, from time to time he stays in touch and even replies to a few posts...but at least he's staying in touch.

Posted by: Denny Sugar on November 22, 2008 11:57 PM

People, people. It isn't even Seth Godin on Twitter, just someone posing as him. He hasn't posted a thing.

Posted by: Chris C. on March 17, 2009 12:55 PM





Stanton Optical


Featured FREE Resource: