Below is an excellent article written by Shea Bennett on the 5 Stages of Getting Twitter. I am sharing her 5 Stages (in its entirety) as it is such a good summary and one that even the most prolific Tweeters will be able to resonate with. Having had numerous conversations on the topic, I know that many colleagues have also gone through these very stages. Those that have persevered and reached stage 5 now have a valuable resource at their finger tips. The key thing to remember is that Twitter is what you make of it. Follow people, companies, groups or brands that interest you. Do look at who other people follow and then if their tweets also interest you, then by all means follow them too. It’s a personal choice and will depend on the interests you have. If you only follow celebrities but are not interested in what they say, your Twitter feed will be meaningless.
5 Stages of Getting Twitter by Shea Bennett
Stage 1 – Denial (“Twitter is a waste of time.”)
Denial is the first thing that most people feel about Twitter. They’ve decided that it isn’t for them. They’re far too busy, and Twitter is a waste of time. They’re already on Facebook, after all – and they hate that, too. And look what happened to Myspace. Why make the effort?
Stage 2 – Anger (“Why would I care about what people are having for breakfast?”)
Twitter, Twitter, Twitter. That’s all the newspapers ever talk about! Who cares what some celebrity said to another on Twitter? Who cares what people are tweeting about when American Idol and The X Factor are on? Who cares that Twitter broke the news before anybody else (and that several people took on-the-scene photos, too)? Twitter, Twitter, Twitter – enough already!
Stage 3 – Bargaining (“I’m only signing up because my friends are on there.”)
Finally, they cave, and begrudgingly open an account, mostly to appease friends, or perhaps because Twitter is being mentioned a lot where they work. Yeah, I’m on Twitter, they say. Often they’re very active for 24-72 hours. And then completely ignore it for the next few weeks.
Stage 4 – Depression (“It doesn’t make any sense.”)
For many this is the worst stage. They’ve finally made the effort and signed up, and now all their fears are confirmed. They were right – Twitter isn’t for them. There’s nothing to see or do. It’s like talking into a vacuum. Who are these people following me? Why are these people following me? Who should I be following? Where are my friends? Who cares what I have to say? How come I can only write tweets about what I’m eating for breakfast? What the heck is a hashtag!?
Stage 5 – Acceptance (“I get it!”)
Many people don’t get to this stage, abandoning their Twitter accounts somewhere between bargaining and depression. But for those that do it’s totally worth it. They keep plugging away, keep reading, keep learning, keep asking questions and keep doing it. Suddenly, the light bulb goes on. Nobody can tell you what Twitter is, because Twitter isn’t any one thing. You have to find out for yourself. Then, suddenly, it’s your Twitter. You own it. You shape it. And you get it. It’s a beautiful moment. And often those who were the most resistant, and the most critical, become the biggest evangelists.
Shea Bennett: http://www.mediabistro.com/alltwitter/getting-twitter_b9660