Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Twitter


We all know it. We’ve all heard of it. Most of us already have an account on there. The mascot, the little blue bird, is easily recognized as an icon. It is without a doubt my favorite social media platform of all time, with Pinterest coming in a close second.

Before I talk about the basic gist of Twitter, I think it only makes sense to give a little background info. Ten years ago, a team of employees at Odeo, Inc. (including key players @Noah, @Dom, and @Jack), a podcasting company in South Park, San Francisco, were in quite of a Catch-22 when Apple burst into the scene with the launch of iTunes podcasting. They needed to reinvent themselves, and FAST.
Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter, comes up with the innovative idea of “a dispatch service that connects  us on our phones using text” (Sagolla, 2009). He, @Florian, and @Biz, managed by @Noah, created version 0.1, entirely web-based…thus, on March 21, 2006, twttr, as it was called, was born and the very first tweet was made.
In the beginning, the site was permitted for use only by the company and their immediate families; no other companies were allowed to join (Sagallo, 2009). The name derived from American shortcodes being only 5 characters, and before the familiar 40404 it is associated with now, the shortcode was 10958. The option to make an account private was incorporated when twttr only had about 100 users. The website itself has been through changes, physical and internal; Twictionary was created to assign terminology to various aspects of the site. Twttr Beta was launched, then Odeo Inc. was declining in relevancy; resulting in @Dom, @Adam, @TonyStubblebine, @Rabble, @Noah, and @TimRoberts being let go and twttr.com launching to the public.
The website was still in its budding stages at this point. Odeo turned into Obvious Corp. and acquired what is now twitter.com (before it became its own company in 2007). Keeping the 160-character text message limit in mind, the character limit of 140 was set “in order to leave room for the username and the colon in front of the message” (Sagallo, 2009).
In 2007, Twitter would really begin to take off when it made its national debut at SxSW; where streams of tweets would be seen on plasma screens throughout the festival. The site went on to win the award in the Blog category, then debuts at Apple’s WWDC of the same year, then print, TV, and Cable news follow suit in joining the new phenomenon. By this time, especially with each new feature added, the number of users and amount of usage was MULTIPLYING at a rapid pace. From this point on, Twitter would blossom into the 2nd biggest social networking website in the world, with 320 million users as of December 31, 2015.

Bonus: Take a look at this blast from the past, when Twitter was in its baby stages. Reading the comments, especially the first one, makes me giggle just knowing that those who said it would never work are eating their words!

So You Want To Be A Tweeter?!

The major reason that Twitter is such a smash hit is because of its ease of use. Here’s how to get started:

  1. Setting up an account is a piece of cake. All you need is an email address and a username of your choice. It can be your full name, a nickname, or anything, really. Your username speaks volumes so let your personality shine!
  2. Next step is to edit your profile. This will include your display picture, bio, location, personal website, and your join date. You can fill out just one section if you want, but it is highly recommended that you fill in every section so other users can find you.
  3. Finally, the most important step – follow people! If you are stumped, start by following your favorite celebrities. Search your interests and follow people who you share these interests with. Follow people in your area. You can connect your email address or your address book to find friends and family who are already on! The possibilities are endless.

With these three simple steps completed, now you are ready to tweet!
Now I know what you’re probably thinking…”WHY the heck would I really want to make a Twitter account? I don’t want the universe knowing that I’m hungry! Is this really what people use it for?! How pointless!” True, it seems like this was all what Twitter was a decade ago…but throughout the years, it has evolved into much more than just a site where you can tell your friends and family that you’re currently eating a sandwich (unless it’s from @Subway, then you’ll probably get a coupon for 10% off your next order). Celebrities use it to update their fans on their next tour dates, their newest movie roles, and the like. Small businesses and mega corporations are using it to keep their fans in the know of what’s going on with the company. Many people are using Twitter as their go-to news source with companies like @CNN, @nytimes, and @HuffingtonPost providing breaking news in real-time around the world. If you’re like me and love to save money, you can even find deals with your favorite shops or restaurants! Pretty neat, right? Here are a few examples of organizations using Twitter in some of the most creative ways possible to create content, engage with their fans, and more.

#1. Coca-Cola

Coca-Cola, my favorite soda and yours, is always coming up with creative ways to market their brand and engage with their fans. This example from 2011 proves no different. In partnership with Ogilvy Argentina, Twitter users sent tweets cheering on Argentina in Copa America 2011 with the hashtag #HinchadaCocaCola. Two million tweets were printed out and blasted into the air from cannons as confetti at the event as the players made their entrance, all filled with encouraging content created by the fans. Why was this campaign successful?

  • “They used a current event to their advantage,
  • Sent content in a fun and playful way,
  • Used creativity to connect with their audience, and
  • Involved current customers at a live event” (Guest Author, 2014)

#2: Domino’s

You love sales, right? Do you also love pizza? You’re gonna love this.
Domino’s UK started a clever campaign in 2012 during the lunch hour, where with every tweet that included the hashtag #letsdolunch, the company would drop £0.01 off the price of their most popular pizza. The result? The price was reduced from £15.99 to £7.74 (Guest Author, 2014). In short, perfect timing + the love of pizza + major savings = a win-win for everybody!

#3: Evian

Picture this: It’s a hot sunny day in New York City. You decide to visit a park because you want to relax on your day off. After half an hour, you begin to regret not taking a water bottle because the sweltering heat is starting to get to you. You can’t go on any further…until Evian comes to the rescue!
On August 19-21, the company created the hashtag #Evianbottleservice for users to tweet. With every tweet to Evian that described their location, two teams were at play: Evian’s community managers, social media agency Team Epiphany, and staffers from PR firm Edelman responding to these tweets, and brand ambassador assigned to meet the tweeters at their location within 5 to 7 to give them a free bottled water. These efforts were paired with “Promoted Tweets to target ZIP codes around the neighborhoods to amplify real-time efforts” (Johnson, 2014).
Between August 15-21, Evian scored a huge number of followers, mentions, and praise before, during, and after the campaign. So, it is safe to say that it blew the competition out of the water (pun intended).

There is no escaping Twitter. No matter what changes it goes through, there is no doubt that it’s here to stay. Now that you know a little about this juggernaut of social media, take a look at an infographic on how you can gain more followers and generally succeed in Twitter without really trying (this may or may not be a musical pun).

5-tips-to-succeed-at-twitter (1)



Author, G. (2014, February 7). 7 Of The Most Creative Twitter Campaigns. Retrieved February 16, 2016, from http://www.adweek.com/socialtimes/7-creative-twitter-campaigns/496376?red=at

Johnson, L. (2014, September 5). Evian’s Real-Time Marketing Reaps Big Social Stats. Retrieved February 20, 2016, from http://www.adweek.com/news/technology/evians-real-time-marketing-reaps-big-social-stats-159898

Sagolla, D. (2009, January 30). How Twitter Was Born. Retrieved February 16, 2016, from http://www.140characters.com/2009/01/30/how-twitter-was-born/

A “Friendly Twist” To An Intimidating Situation

Coca-Cola, arguably the most popular soda brand in the world, has almost never failed at creating advertising campaigns to sell their products worldwide. From the beloved “I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing (In Perfect Harmony)” ad to the iconic “Always Coca-Cola” campaign, the company always finds new and exciting ways to optimize their brand and tap into the human psyche by appealing to the emotions. As Tina Chohan says, Coca-Cola’s continuous marketing strategies “keeps the brand message alive, the campaigns back up its ideology and it forces people not to forget them as the leaders who bring “happiness” to their consumers [1]. With the rise and popularity of social media, creating advertising campaigns has never been more exciting. It’s no wonder why it still reigns supreme as the #1 soft drink in the game.

With that in mind, I want to talk about a blast from the past: one of Coca-Cola’s recent campaigns of the 2010s that utilizes social media.

Created in conjunction with the Colombia branch of the Leo-Burnett advertising agency in 2014, Coca-Cola created this Youtube advertisement that takes place in a college campus on the first day of school. It sets the scene perfectly: freshmen are walking around campus and they have a desire to meet new people. The only problem is, they do not know how; whether it is due to anxiety or simply not knowing what to say, they are stumped so as a result, they either sit on their phones or sit alone hoping someone will come up to them and strike a conversation with them.
Taking this situation into account, LB-C created this ingenious campaign by featuring a fridge full of Coke bottles, only with “smart” caps; they could not be opened by one student alone. The key to these caps was that they had to be linked to another smart cap to be unlocked and opened – meaning one student had to pair up with another to get them to open.
With 5,000+ subscriptions to the Coca-Cola Youtube channel, 160,000+ likes and shares on Facebook [2], and 9.6 million views and counting on the video alone, this advertisement was a huge success. Aside from these statistics, though, why else was this campaign a hit with the masses?

For starters, it helps to discuss their content creation/curation strategy. Take into consideration that Coca-Cola has always embraced the idea that a simple can or bottle of soda can really bring people together. For college students, making friends is tough especially on the first day of school. These two concepts can easily blend together in perfect harmony, which is why college students were the target audience for this campaign. The persuasive messaging strategy that was used was that of pathos, or an emotional appeal. They want to be able to relate to their target audience in a way that will get them thinking and talking. Plus, that people love to watch heartwarming videos plays a key part in the creation of the content in this campaign; in this case, a Youtube video. Pretty neat, right?

The impact that this campaign has made is extraordinary, to say the very least. In fact, searching the hashtag #FriendlyTwist on Twitter yields the most recent results from 2015; all positive reactions. Clearly, it’s made a very lasting impression with not just the target audience, but so many other groups of people as well. No wonder Coca-Cola is still #1!

What is your favorite social media campaign?


[1]: Jordan Skole: The Best Social Media Campaigns of All Time. December 23, 2013, last modified in 2014. https://www.getambassador.com/blog/best-social-media-campaigns

[2]: Tina Chohan: Why students love Coca-Cola’s “Friendly Twist” marketing campaign. September 16, 2014. http://www.marketingtechnews.net/news/2014/sep/16/why-students-love-coca-colas-friendly-twist-marketing-campaign/