Twitter has been the It Thing for much of the last year and while marketers, athletes, and celebrities in particular have embraced it, Twitter still hasn’t really achieved mainstream acceptance. That acceptance, however, is fast approaching as evidenced by the entry of two heavyweights into the Twitter arena earlier this week:
First, President Obama sent his first tweet on Monday. (There’s an @BarackObama account with 3+ million followers, but the President has a ghost tweeter for it.)
And then, on Tuesday another heavyweight joined the party – Bill Gates. The Philanthropist and King of Microsoft is following 40 Twitter accounts – mostly some philanthropic foundations and some leftish political folks. Oh, and uh…Ashley Tisdale. His first tweet – “Hello World.”
This gives me reason to believe we’ve reached the Tipping (Tweeting?) Point in terms of mainstream social media use. Maybe now businesses – not just consumer brands but B2B firms and professional services firms, etc. – will realize that the Big Boys are playing this game too.
A new report from Forrester Research shows social media is growing up, as is its audience: one third of adults report posting to social media sites at least once a week and more than half of them maintain a profile on a social media site. Still, many businesses continue to struggle with the business value of social media and how they can tap into it. They still view it as “something the kids do.” Of course, many of them haven’t tried it for themselves. With the President and Gates jumping in, perhaps they’ll be convinced that it’s here to stay and that, increasingly, that’s where their customers are.
The cocktail party that is social media is well underway. Don’t be late.