Live Tweeting: How it’s Made its Mark on Social Media
By Nicole Santos, Intern
With the increase in social media usage by companies, brands, and even public figures (whether celebrities, politicians, or even a combination of both), it’s important to keep note of the constant changes and advances that come alongside these social media outlets. From app updates to different page layouts and additives, us, as consumers of these outlets, and public relations professionals (or training to be, in my case) need to make ourselves aware of such advances. This is necessary to keep the timeliness factor as a leading motive in this line of work.
Journalists and TV personalities, such as Perez Hilton and Katie Couric have taken to Twitter, as news functions like CNN and the E! Network have as well. Traditional newspapers are seeing a steep decline in readership as many consumers are now utilizing Twitter as a news outlet. Seeing news simultaneous to personal tweets from friends or family has become a convenient way for tweeters to keep track of things. It’s quick and instant, which has given several companies the opportunity to communicate with their audience and market effectively and efficiently on topics deemed relevant.
Tweeters have now taken to live-tweeting, a popular practice among online journalists, who, like PR’s, are constantly learning and adjusting to technological advances. Live-tweeting might seem like an influx of noise on Twitter, but when using hash tags and mentioning the appropriate people, it actually becomes a mass conversation.
The exchange of live tweets reached significant numbers during this year’s Super Bowl, reaping 20.9 million tweets and over 14 million relating to the Grammy’s. For example, Oreo, Tide, and Calvin Klein all took advantage of the half-hour blackout during the second half of the Super Bowl game, tweeting ads responding to the loss of power. Walgreen’s, PBS, Audi, and Budlight were a few companies also engaging with live tweets in response to the blackout. After releasing their blackout ad, Oreo gained 7,700 new followers. During and after Taylor Swift’s opening performance at the Grammy’s, she was immediately bashed and threatened via live tweets for possibly mocking ex-boyfriend Harry Styles’ British accent.Through such actions, journalists and public relations professionals alike become accustomed to this flood of participation from the general public. They can acquire the information they need, whether in terms of demographic figures or interests for the success and flow of their respective organizations.
Clearly, live-tweeting is gaining much momentum in becoming one of the leading means of mass communication. As public relations professionals, it is important to fully apprehend this system and incorporate it with traditional practices. I found these readings interesting on PR websites directly such as: http://bit.ly/Vax7lG and on Mashable: