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Twitter As A Research Tool - Some Tips

by Yvonne Russell on April 11th, 2008


I’ve been exploring how Twitter could be used as a business tool. It’s been interesting learning from others and observing how they use it too. Laura Spencer of Business and Blogging and Work From Home Momma has been using Twitter as a research tool.

She posed questions (tweets) in the Twitter conversation thread about co-working, the drawbacks of working at home and the benefits of working at home over a number of days.

As Laura is a regular member of the Twitter community, she received some great feedback. The Twitter feedback (or tweets) made their way into some enlightening and interesting posts as a roundup at Laura’s Work From Home Momma blog.

You can use Twitter to boost your home business.

Use Twitter For Researching e.g.

  • a book
  • a blog post
  • a magazine or newspaper article
  • background for an interview
  • a podcast
  • a business idea
  • a marketing problem
  • brainstorming
  • opinions
  • experiences
  • advice
  • resource recommendations
  • any others?

Some Twitter Research Tips
Become an active member of the Twitter community. People are more likely to give you feedback if they have interacted with you before, and if you give as well as ask.

  • Follow people who are involved in the area you want to research
  • Keep your question clear, simple and open ended
  • Follow up with other prompts to keep the conversation going
  • Don’t be intrusive or pushy… a fine balance with wanting to keep the ball rolling
  • Don’t flog a dead horse. If no one is interested, just leave it. Twitter is for social interaction too.
  • Don’t only use Twitter to ask for help. Be sure to help others too and balance business with something lighter
  • Any other suggestions?

Do you have questions about Twitter? I’m just exploring too, but maybe we can learn from each other.

Want to follow me on Twitter?

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POSTED IN: Planning

7 opinions for Twitter As A Research Tool - Some Tips

  • Laura Spencer
    Apr 11, 2008 at 8:40 am

    Thanks for all the link love! :)
    More than research, I think that Twitter is a great way to involve the community in your post. It’s like blogging a discussion…

  • Mary Emma Allen
    Apr 12, 2008 at 11:59 am

    Thanks, Laura, for stopping by and giving your input to Yvonne’s great post. I can see that I’d better get “atwittering.”

  • Yvonne Russell
    Apr 12, 2008 at 11:23 pm

    Hi Laura
    Absolutely… the research or feedback is part of the discussion. It’s all about conversation and community.

  • Yvonne Russell
    Apr 12, 2008 at 11:24 pm

    Hi Mary Emma
    Give it a go. It’s fun and can be very interesting too.

  • Martin Neumann
    Apr 13, 2008 at 4:14 am

    Nice list of uses for Twitter, Yvonne.

    I’m getting great benefit from using Twitter - especially following those I respect.

    I don’t use it for marketing my business, but find it very useful to also build relationships - and quite strong relationships, too.

    I was a very strong skeptic of Twitter back then but I’m glad to be proven wrong.

    Also, we all in the home business sector know about the isolation issues. Twitter offers some relief from that in a “chatting around the watercooler” type of way. Just the odd shooting the breeze every few hours or so works wonders.

  • Yvonne Russell
    Apr 13, 2008 at 4:50 am

    Hi Martin
    I was sceptical too, but thought I should at least give it a go.

    Following others is a great way to get the “hot off the press” informal insights from others.

    As you say, chatting around the Twitter watercooler is great for building relationships and for taking some time to connect with others.

    In home business we often work alone, so that sense of community can be both energizing and relaxing.

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