Twitter Gate – Buy More Twitter Followers Free Instantly – Business Marketing Strategy Implications?

This week there are stories raging in political circles with allegations the Newt Gingrich (or more likely his Internet strategists) bought or acquired Twitter followers. Seeing a concept I’ve seen whispered in the back of the room at Internet conferences being discussed in a broad and general way in Time magazine makes one wonder if we are witnessing an important inflection point moment.

The article brings something in the bright, bright light that had been hidden in the darkness, the TIME article states, “…Newt’s numbers are way out of the ordinary – even for a politician. While about 8% of his followers are real, other politicians were deemed to have anywhere 20% to 30% of “real” followers. In comparison, the average Twitter user, like you and me, have anywhere from 35% to 60% real people following them.”

It makes one wonder where all these non-real followers are coming from and more than a few CEOs are likely reading this article and asking the question, “Is all this investment in social media justified and an activity that will grow my business and improve the bottom line or are there wiser marketing investments to be made?” The answer is not one that will immediately be answerable completely. Before we get into that, a little history is required. Twitter has API’s that allow people to interact with their data to build other tools. For reasons that are completely unclear, the API allowed people to automate certain actions like posting, retweeting, even creation of new accounts via automated programmatic methods.  This appears to have helped Twitter grow users to create user adoption rates that were shown to venture capitalists. Some have suggested that certain due diligence steps were missed, I don’t know whether it is true or not. Time will tell.

What this incident has a potential to do is bring this conversation into the boardroom and have serious questions asked like are these 80,000+ Twitter follower social media experts really experts at anything at all? Are all of these investments in social media justified? Shouldn’t I be focused on a well diversified portfolio of relevant marketing activities? What does Klout’s influencer score of 72 for @NewtGingrich say about fake retweets being counted as real and will Klout eventually become the solution with verified users and replace Twitter altogether (if Twitter doesn’t buy it someday soon)? How many reports of social media ROI are sitting in executive boardrooms right now that are not true representations of actual real world reality? How many marketers departments will have new and different leadership 90 days from now due to questions raised due to this incident? Will people across the globe stop looking at the number of Twitter followers as the Holy Grail of social media efforts?

The answers to these questions aren’t fully clear yet, but I wanted to raise some of the most important ones. I can confidently say that the goal should always be one of diversified marketing strategies that reach relevant demographics and real, actual target customers.

It’s time for CEOs to rewrite the job spec of the CMO to the creation of relevant business results instead of hype, buzz and hocus pocus. This needed migration is just an idea in most boardrooms today, it needs to one day become reality. It’s time for businesses to adapt their organizations to perform in this environment which is something that must be customized for each company in solutions provided based on the markets that they serve.

How big is this marketplace? According to Google’s Keyword External tool over 3,361,550 queries on Google occurred on the term Twitter Followers. This quantifies 1) the amount of people researching how to improve their Twitter followers is large and 2) it means that social media people seeking Twitter followers are not talking to their friends via Social Media about this, they are using a search engine called Google, which is the primary tool that most people use for this research as well as what the majority of the population uses at the moment they are seeking highly relevant information.

Keyword    Global Monthly Searches
how to get twitter followers    90500
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twitter followers free    27100
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find twitter followers    60500
pay for twitter followers    390
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getting more twitter followers    880
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buy more twitter followers    590
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get instant twitter followers    390
increase your twitter followers    880
get free twitter followers    14800
how to buy twitter followers    33100
twitter followers for free    27100
more twitter followers without following    390
twitter follower software    1000
how to get more twitter followers    40500
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download twitter followers    880
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buy twitter followers    33100
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twitter for business    60500
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twitter follow back    12100
best twitter to follow    14800
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twitter software    49500
twitter adder    12100
twitter who to follow    301000
twitter more followers    49500
purchase twitter followers    14800
getting twitter followers    14800
get more twitter follower    40500
best twitters to follow    880
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get twitter followers without following    1000
buy youtube views    18100
guaranteed twitter followers    2400
get more followers on twitter free    6600
free twitter followers instantly    880
twitter increase followers    8100
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how do i get more twitter followers    49500
who has most twitter followers    12100
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buy real twitter followers    110
twitter followers following    9900
automatic twitter followers    1600
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buying twitter followers    12100
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how do you get twitter followers    301000
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how do i get twitter followers    301000
get free followers on twitter    14800
twitter follow Friday    1600
how to get twitter followers without following back    480
how to get more twitter followers fast    1000
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how to get a lot of twitter followers    4400
get followers on twitter free    14800
remove twitter followers    6600
twitters to follow    8100
twitter followers    301000
Total monthly Google queries for the term Twitter Followers on Google Keyword External Tool    3361550

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