Chris Brogan's Archimedes Effect is from his book Trust Agents (co-authored with Julien Smith). The principle is about leverage. I've been asking myself how can we leverage the addition of nonprofits and charities on the Twitter Suggested User List?
I got up really early this morning PST time to fly to the East Coast for some trainings I'm doing. While waiting for my plane this morning before dawn, I scanned my Twitter stream thinking that a jolt of caffeine and Twitter would wake me up while I did my morning 20 minute information grazing routine, finding good stuff, retweeting, bookmarking and sharing. I came across this tweet from @socialcitizen
I followed the ant trails to the Chronicle of Philanthropy blog post today asking the question, Should Twitter Recommend More Charities? and referring to a post last Friday by Sean at Tactical Philanthropy breaking the news that Twitter had added charities to its list of suggested users.
Sean listed the new users:
The new “suggested users” are:
- Social Edge
- Skoll Foundation
- Matt Flannery
- Acumen Fund
- charity: water
- Kjerstin Erickson (FORGE founder)
- Jacqueline Novogratz (Acumen Fund founder)
- Room to Read
There's been a lot of discussion about the Twitter suggested user list which includes a wide mix of celebrities, news outlets, and more. Sean points out the value of being on the list:
In June the New York Times wrote about the “suggested user” list saying that Twitter was now a “king maker”. They said being listed could add 500,000 followers and pointed out that social media titan Jason Calacanis offered $250,000 to be listed.
Godin used (as Tom Watson said it), "the Ashton Kutcher Metric of Social Change - not yet proven, only a theory!" I am assuming Tom was talking about the number of followers on Twitter as a measure of impact. If you look in the comments, there was a lot of discussion and on nonprofit blogs about whether number of followers is a meaningful indicator or can be translated into value for nonprofits. There was a comment about how a smaller number of passionate followers might be worth more to a nonprofit than millions who select them off a general list.
As I was waiting for my plane, I discovered a fantastic and funny post by Alexandra Samuel on social media analytics and metrics about the greatest peril of social media: analytophilia. It's about obsessing on raw numbers and constantly checking the number of Twitter followers or retweets or Facebook insight clicks. She recommends that you don't just look at numbers, but ask questions. I've been advocating this approach for a long time and in many different blog posts. Take for example, "Using Metrics to Harvest Insights About Your Social Media Strategy."
They started to board my plane and I glanced down at my Twitter account and noticed that something strange happened. My followers had doubled since the last time I looked! I had to wait until I could get on the Virgin America wifi to follow the ant trails. I discovered that I was on the Twitter suggested users list! So, this sent me over to my new typepad metrics dashboard to see what the impact might be. I think I'm going to have to track this over a couple of months and set something up on google analytics.
If I was one of the nonprofits on the list, I'd be tracking conversions via a Twitter landing page. That's what I plan to do.
The Chronicle has been crowdsourcing suggestions of nonprofits to be added to the suggested list. I'm going to take a slightly different approach. I'd like to provide a list of lists to nonprofit twitter users and charities. I'm adding these to my Twitter landing page. If you have a list of nonprofit twitter accounts you'd like to add, please leave a comment.
And metrics geeks, how should I track this?
And, to bring this post full circle, I'm giving a way a copy of Chris Brogan's Trust Agents. Leave a comment!