29 July 2009

Twitter Drives Traffic to Media Websites

Micro-blogging site Twitter has become a key source of traffic to other content-driven websites, including news and entertainment ones, Hitwise reports.

UK use of Twitter has increased 22-fold in the past 12 months, making it the nation's fastest-growing major website.

One consequence of its phenomenal growth, Hitwise's Robin Goad writes, is Twitter's new role as a traffic driver. During May 2009, Twitter was the 30th biggest source of traffic for other sites in the UK, accounting for 1 in every 350 visits to a typical website. And nearly 56% of this traffic went to other content-driven online media sites.

Twitter was the 27th biggest source of traffic to News and Media – Print websites in the UK during May, and all the main newspaper websites now have multiple Twitter feeds.

The key to a successful Twitter presence is to engage the community, Goad says.

"Twitter is a great viral marketing channel, and for many users the aim is to have their story ‘retweeted’ – i.e. passed on by other users – as many times as possible," he writes. "Although all of the newspapers have multiple ‘official’ feeds, these tend to be bland and have very low ‘retweet’ rates. Where journalists themselves are ‘tweeting’ themselves and engaging with the Twitter community, they typically have more success in creating viral stories."

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