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Twitter consultant tip: Twitter is not email

by Adam Green on November 20, 2010

in Automated Tweets,Consulting Tips

One of the oddest behaviors on Twitter is spammers who think they can persuade people by blasting the same message over and over again through multiple accounts. Yesterday I looked at the Twitter search results for the phrase “twitter api”. I found hundreds of copies of these two tweets from dozens of accounts:

The Twitter API is the one responsible why Twitter can easily know that you are automating your task http://adf.ly/BG6i

Using software that use Twitter API to do things is like inviting Twitter anti spam bots to look on your activites http://adf.ly/BG6i

I won’t even comment on the non-native English. Well, I guess I just did :) . The real point is that it doesn’t make any sense. URLs in tweets get a high click through rate, because they seem more honest than ads. But if someone sees hundreds of copies of the same tweet, will they really believe this is the action of a human or a bot?

The logic behind much of the Twitter spam is that users get many of their tweets through search, so if you put out tweets with likely search terms, your message will get in front of them. It makes sense, but if it is done in such a crude way, anyone searching will see that this is obviously a spam message. I think these sloppy versions of Twitter spam are done by email spammers, who are trying to apply the same techniques to Twitter. The difference is that you can’t see the emails arriving in everyone else’s mailbox, but you can see all the tweets from all the public accounts.

I know that often clients ask for this type of Twitter spam to be sent out on their behalf. A good Twitter consultant will explain that Twitter is a completely different medium from email, and it requires different techniques. I have nothing against commercial speech. I do it all the time for clients. I just don’t understand sloppy, badly executed communication plans that are bound to fail.

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