I Don’t Tweet, I Twadvertise

kinnon —  October 18, 2010 — 5 Comments

Me. Me. Me.

My favourite note on which to begin a song about my favourite subject.


Of course.



Eons ago in blogdom, when Google was a mere eight-year old, I blogged about what I called the Generous Web. People like Kathy Sierra & Doc Searls – to name but two of hundreds – blew my mind with how willing they were to freely share their creative thoughts and ideas with any and all who visited their outposts on these interwebs. They were and still are great examples of how social media can be powerfully positive. (Although the ungenerous web took Kathy out of blogdom.)

But the interwebs are also a great place for narcissists to sing their own praises – to shout “look at me, look at me” from the interweb rooftops – places like Twitter and Facebook. (The Facebook fan concept did make me slightly crazy – although I probably was already close.)

After a slow start, I became a committed Twitter user 3,328 Tweets ago. Unlike many, I follow a limited number of other users – 212 to be exact – people whose thoughts, ideas & humour I’m interested in.

At the writing completion of this blog post – that number will be 211.

A well known blogger, who I already follow via Google Reader, only uses Twitter to announce his blog posts. He doesn’t Tweet, he Twadvertises. His engagement with Twitter is simply to shout the aforementioned, “look at me, look at me.”

The Cluetrain promise of social media is conversation and, in fairness to this Twadvertiser, he does engage in conversation at his blog – but Twitter is simply an advertising medium for him.

Now, I do use Twitter to make people aware of new blog posts – but try to limit my blog Twadvertising to two or three times during the day – and feel guilty about doing that. I more often try and point folk at something I’ve found interesting, share what I’m up to or feebly attempt to be humourous.

Of course, the irony is that right after I unfollow the trigger for this post – I’ll Tweet about it’s publishing.



A television editor, writer & director since 1978. A Christian since 1982. More than a little frustrated with the Church in the West since late in the last millennium.

5 responses to I Don’t Tweet, I Twadvertise

  1. Excellent post, Bill.

    I’ve wrestled with this idea many times. I’m one who tweets and twadvertises. The reason I got into Twitter was because readers who don’t use Google Reader were asking if I could Tweet links to whatever was being posted daily.

    Funny, but I look at this the other way around. It’s actually easier for me to use Twitter to point people to my blog and to the other blogs I find useful than for me to post personal thoughts and circumstances all day long. It feels more narcissistic to me to post about everything I’m doing. Instead, I sense a sort of distance from the medium if I’m just using it as an alert feature to point people to the blog, where real interaction takes place.

    Do you think bloggers should have two Twitter identities? One named after the blog just for blog post alerts and one for the actual person? A sort of separation of Tweet and blog?

  2. I wonder how many people checked to see if you unfollowed them after you posted this! I generally tweet once for a new blog post, but I enjoy tweeting for conversation, for post thought provoking questions or statements. Twadvertising can have its place, but as you say, if that is primarily you use it for, it is a waste.

    I recently had a conversation with a publishing about social media & marketing. The hardest concept to communicate (or rather for them to understand) was that the focus is about giving something of value to your followers- a quote, an idea, a question, a conversation, etc. Seems simple to me, but I think it is a whole new paradigm for many.

  3. Trevin,
    I guess I’d say I have no real problem with how you Tweet – and I find you are gracious with pointing to others all the time at your blog – Trevin’s Seven, etc. As you are one of the more irenic social media writers, I would never suggest Narcissism as an issue for you.

    I do think that Jamie is right (below) that the best Twitter practice is giving something of value to those who follow you and to recognize that Twitter is a conversation.

  4. Well said as usual, Jamie.

  5. Good advice, Bill and Jamie. I think the emphasis on value is key here. Well said.


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