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May 2010

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NTEN is all about community, which means that we have to be good at knowing what our community wants and needs, likes and hates. The key to that is listening. I personally use Twitter to listen in a couple of ways:

1. I ask questions. Twitter is great for temperature taking. It's not scientific polling, but you can throw a question out there and get a good idea whether or not your idea is worth pursuing.

2. I listen to people's grips. A lot of what people do on Twitter is complain. Seriously. People love to complain on Twitter! Hearing what's frustrating people gives me ideas for solutions we can focus on.

3. I look for enthusiasm. People also celebrate on Twitter, which is usually accompanied by a link to an awesome new resource, blog post, idea. I pay attention to what is exciting people.

Beth Dunn

Tina_m is a fantastic artist blogger, with a lot of great thoughts to share. I'm really glad I met her (on twitter).

I've been using Twitterlocal a lot recently, to stay connected with the (emerging) twitter crowd in my neighborhood. I love the global nature of Twitter, but I also like using it as the proverbial tin-cans-and-string apparatus.


I think listening is so important. Most of my friends on Twitter all only interested in themselves. It's become all too spammy. Hope your blog post helps.

paul sanchez

I follow key people on my igoogle and i follow 2000+ via gchat. The people 2000+ people i follow is what i use to inspire myself or when i have a little down time. i find a lot of ideas in the streams of conversation. i got that idea from for my close friends in igoogle i use the igoogle setup really helps me listen carefully to all my close friends.

i also through questions out there when i'm having a hard time coming up with an answer. it works really well for getting answers. the biggest thing i like about listening on there is it takes me directions i would of never thought of going. kind of like stumbleupon does.

Jordan V

The biggest utility of Twitter for me is listening. I love to join in or add to the conversation when it's relevant or when I can, but overall, I consider the tool to be a great way to really tune into what people are saying. I've had people ask me how or why nonprofits should use Twitter, and I always tell them it's a great way to listen to what people want and what they are currently saying- possibly about you. If you listen closely, you can pick up on trends and ideas that can really help your outreach and communication efforts. In short - Twitter, it's like an unofficial focus group!

Michele Martin

Last night I did a workshop on social media for PR professionals, with Twitter as one of the tools we looked at. One of the organizations that was represented was a nonprofit working with autistic children and families and they wondered how to use Twitter. We discussed using Tweetscan to monitor mentions of "autism," "autistic," and other related words so that they could identify people who might be tweeting on these issues and then see if they should follow them to start seeing their concerns, etc. One thought. . .


I recently joined the Twitter bloggers and wrote up a post about Twitter as well. There are 3 reasons, for me anyway, I like Twitter at an increasing rate:

1. I get an inside view inside the 'daily lives' of some cool people with some cool jobs. I.E. the CEO of Zappos. I've learned so much about what a CEO does and how they can still be personable, friendly and helpful despite being verrry busy.

2. The potential of Twitter continues to expand with the growing and exciting side applications and widgets.

3. It never gets boring. Brainstorming and observing how creative yourself and others can be with 140 characters!

Great discussion! & glad you and Beth Dunn enjoyed your profiles, =)


Shaping Youth

Such a super point, Beth...listening is the 'other half' of acting with full consciousness.

Been on and off in stealth mode, dying to engage, but no time, with a gazillion pings of people who want to 'follow' me and it overwhelms me so I simply sign on to other accounts and 'listen.'

Aaron Miller

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