Archive for March, 2011

twitter turns 5


Yesterday, Monday 21st March 2011, Twitter turned 5 years old.



From Jack Dorsey’s first tweet in 2006 Twitter has grown to be a powerhouse with an average of 460,000 new accounts being created every day in the last month.

first tweet

the first tweet


Twitter In Numbers

In 2007 Twitter averaged 5,000 tweets per day – on March 11th there were 177 million tweets sent.

It took 3 years, 2 months and 1 day to reach the 1 billionth tweet – today there are 1 billion tweets every week!

Twitter has grown from 8 employees in January 2008 to 400 employees today, they have raised an eye-watering $360 million from investors and are valued at around $3.7 billion.


Memorable Moments

Twitter has had many memorable moments since Dorsey’s first tweet …

from the US Airway plane crash in the Hudson…

airplane in the hudson tweetairplane in hudson picture


to the coverage of political uprisings in Moldova, Iran, Tunisia and Egypt

mubarak steps down tweet


What’s Next?

But despite its success Twitter have struggled to keep up with demand and their famous ‘fail whale’ still makes an appearance 5 years on.

twitter fail whale

With Dick Costolo now CEO of Twitter all eyes are on him as Twitter strives to prove it can make money, and with its evolving advertising platform now in play some are estimating the company’s revenue for 2011 could be $150 million.

Whether they hit that target or exceed it, only time will tell…


Twitter Official Stats


  • 3 years, 2 months and 1 day. The time it took from the first Tweet to the billionth Tweet.
  • 1 week. The time it now takes for users to send a billion Tweets.
  • 50 million. The average number of Tweets people sent per day, one year ago.
  • 140 million. The average number of Tweets people sent per day, in the last month.
  • 177 million. Tweets sent on March 11, 2011.
  • 456. Tweets per second (TPS) when Michael Jackson died on June 25, 2009 (a record at that time).
  • 6,939. Current TPS record, set 4 seconds after midnight in Japan on New Year’s Day.


  • 572,000. Number of new accounts created on March 12, 2011.
  • 460,000. Average number of new accounts per day over the last month.
  • 182%. Increase in number of mobile users over the past year.


  • 8. 29. 130. 350. 400. Number of Twitter employees in Jan 2008, Jan 2009, Jan 2010, Jan 2011 and today.


Twitter Birthday Video


Whatever the future holds for Twitter, with its rapid user-growth and the potential advertising reach now available, it is definitely a platform to consider for your company.

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do you know wordpress are running ads on your blogI use wordpress.com for this blog and have been very happy with the ease of use since setting the blog up several months ago.


However, last week I discovered something that I was not very happy with.


Normally if my husband is reading the blog, he would do so via his RSS reader, however last week there was a post he wanted to comment on and so he went to the blog site itself only to see a rather large ad at the bottom of the post.


Surprised, he asked if I was running adsense to make some money from the blog.


……… [stunned silence] ….. ads? …. on my blog?


I quickly went to the blog myself but the ads weren’t showing up for me.


A quick search on Google revealed the following:


To support the service (and keep free features free), we sometimes run advertisements. We try hard to make the ads discreet and effective and only run them in limited places. If you would like to completely eliminate ads from appearing on your blog, we offer the No-Ads Upgrade.


It turns out that wordpress.com run these ‘discreet’ ads but the catch is that the ads don’t display if you’re logged into wordpress and this is why I had never seen the ads myself. They also don’t show the ads to ‘regular visitors’, although there’s no indication of what counts as ‘regular’. There is also no indication of the types of ads that will be run – although the one my husband saw was a harmless one for cupcakes.


But the bottom line was wordpress were running ads and potentially making money off of my web traffic without me knowing anything about it.


And, as I said, the ad my husband saw wasn’t discreet at all, so I’ve decided to pay the small fee to upgrade to ‘no-ads’.


To be honest, wordpress is a free service that works well, and them taking this approach to make money is not unreasonable. What I object to is that (1) they do not publicise this when you are setting up the blog (or at least I certainly don’t remember seeing anything about ads) and (2) there is no way to view (or approve) the types of ads running.


It seems sneaky to me, not only because they don’t mention the ads when you are setting up the blog, but because the ads don’t show if you are logged in so, like me, you may never even know they were running … if it weren’t for my husband I would still be none the wiser that there were ads running on my blog.


So wordpress users take note!


Look up your blog on a different computer and check out what it really looks like to new visitors.


You might be ok with the ads running – but it’s nice to know that they are there!



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why your company needs a blog in 2011If your company does not have a blog already it needs to become priority number 1 for 2011.


Previously I’ve talked about how companies that blog get:


  • 55% more visitors;
  • 97% more inbound links; and
  • 434% more indexed pages.


And, how 51% of people read blogs daily and almost 50% read more than one blog every day.


If this data weren’t compelling enough read on…


For the last few years Hubspot have complied a State of Inbound Marketing report and yesterday the 2011 stats were released in a webinar.


65% Of Companies Blog

Blogging clearly came through as a hugely important factor in business growth with a jump from 48% of companies blogging in 2009 to 65% in 2011.

So if you don’t already blog you are already in the minority!

Potential leads that could have found your company are finding your competitors because their blog is giving them the edge in the search engines (remember 434% more indexed pages – each page indexed gives you an extra chance of showing up in search results).


55% Of B2B Companies Acquired A Customer Through Their Blog

B2B companies often argue that inbound marketing does not work for them – that it’s only good for B2C. And, while B2C are acquiring more customers through their blog, with 63% of B2C companies confirming they had established new customers through their blog, B2B companies are not far behind at 55%, with that jumping to 58% for consulting / professional services companies.

Bottom line: the majority of companies that blog are getting customers as a result, regardless of industry.


62% Of Companies View Blog As Important For Business

When asked how important the company blog was to their business 27% reported it was critical and 35% reported it was important, with only a tiny percentage saying it was not useful at all.


Blog Leads Are Cheaper

55% of those surveyed reported that leads from blogging came at a ‘below average’ cost.


In summary:

  • 65% of companies out there are already blogging;
  • 55% have acquired a customer through their blog;
  • 55% say leads acquired through their blog cost less than average; and
  • 62% of companies say their blog is important for their business.


If you’re not already blogging, not only are you missing out on business opportunities, but you are falling further and further behind your competitors.


Take home message

If you do one thing in 2011 – get that company blog up and running!



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Some great fun facts about the current state of Facebook to kick off the week.

video by Alex Trimpe

  1. As of 2011 there are 500 million active Facebook users
  2. 48% of 18-34 year olds check Facebook when they wake up
  3. 35+ year olds represent over 30% of the Facebook userbase
  4. 71.2% of the US web audience is on Facebook
  5. 57% of people talk more online than they do in real life
  6. 48% of young Americans find out about news through Facebook
  7. 750 million photos were uploaded over New Year’s weekend
  8. In 20 minutes on Facebook there are:
    • 1 million links shared;
    • 1.48 million event invites;
    • 1.97 million friend requests accepted;
    • 2.71 million photos uploaded;
    • 2.71 messages sent;
    • 1.32 million photos tagged;
    • 1.85 million status updates;
    • 1.58 million wall posts; and
    • 10.2 million comments made.

Still not convinced your company needs to be on Facebook? Check out the below posts:


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how not to deal with negative commentsOnly a few days before the Irish General Election, Lucinda Creighton, Deputy spokesperson on Justice with special responsibility for Immigration, Integration and Equality for Fine Gael (FG), tweeted exactly the wrong thing.


She tweeted that marriage was “primarily about children, main purpose being to propagate & create environment for children to grow up” and “should ensure gay couples r treated fairly and justly re tax inheritance etc & recognition by the StateBut marriage is different”.


For someone whose job title includes the word ‘equality’ and whose party was tipped to win the election being held a mere 6 days later this was not a smart move.


Needless to say a storm of outrage followed both on Twitter and Facebook, on her own profiles and FG’s profiles, and the media had a field day.


There were several ways FG could have dealt with this, however they chose to

(1) delete the comments on Facebook;

(2) ignore calls for her resignation saying it was not a ‘high priorty’; and

(3) said her comments were her own and nothing to do with the party.


So basically they did nothing other than make it worse; angering people who were upset by the comment and looking for the party’s stance on the issue.


FG has since said they deleted the comments on Facebook because “It’s the policy that, when it becomes apparent there’s a coordinated attack from – very obviously – the same sources, given it’s a forum for open discussion, we consciously free up space for other people to have their say.”


I don’t think public reaction to a sensitive issue constitutes a ‘coordinated attack’ nor do I think that Facebook has a finite amount of space requiring comments to be deleted to ‘free up space’.




Creighton has not deleted any comments on her Facebook page and I have to say that some of them are extremely abusive. While I do not agree with her views, I believe people could have shown their unhappiness with her comment in a more adult fashion, which indeed some did. So I would condone abusive comments being deleted, but only the abusive comments – FG went too far by deleting any comments about the incident full stop.


FG had an opportunity to engage with their followers on an issue important to many and they just slammed the door and plugged their ears.


Some businesses refuse to move into the social media sphere because they are afraid of negative reactions and how they would deal with it. Not many companies would ever be faced with a situation this extreme but negativity can happen. The best way to deal with it, is to in fact deal with it, ignoring the issue won’t make anyone feel any better.  What FG should have done was indicate that while Ms Creighton’s views were her own, the official party view on the subject was xyz – whatever that might have been.


By listening to the concerns and addressing them, they could have won some of the outraged people back. As it was, some people were outraged, and then became incensed at the lack of communication – and – votes lost for FG.


FG did do well in the election. But could they have done better? There is no telling how much damage this incident did.


Take home message?

If you are faced with controversy don’t bury your head in the sand. Face up to it and respect your community enough to respond to their concerns. They might not all agree with your stance, but they will appreciate a response, and you will make them feel like you are indeed listening to them.


Who knows you may even get more followers as a result of listening and caring about your community.


A political party that listens and respond to the community? Wouldn’t that be nice….



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