Unless you have been living in a cave for the past 6 months, you have witnessed how Twitter is rapidly changing the market for those working in the entertainment industry and their clients. If you are aspiring to be within the entertainment industry in some fashion and have not heard about Twitter, I recommend you stop reading and promptly conduct a “Google search.” I’ll wait for you to get back.
Now, I would like to direct your attention to twitterholic.com, a website that displays the top 100 Twitter accounts with the most followers. You will see in the top 20 the likes of Barack Obama, Lance Armstrong, Shaq, Oprah, and P. Diddy.
The Top 5, however, is dominated by entertainment: (5) CNN, (4) Britney Spears, (3) Ellen DeGeneres, (2) The New York Times, and (1) Ashton Kutcher.
That is correct, Ashton Kutcher, with some 1.8 million followers, is followed by more people across the world than the President of the United States. Not to mention John Mayer has some 1.1 million followers after joining Twitter just four months ago.
Entertainment agents take notice: If your client is not on Twitter, and if you are not consistently promoting their presence on Twitter, then you are not providing comprehensive representation. Despite your or your clients’ passive sentiments towards Twitter, eMarketer.com estimates there will be 18.1 million Twitter users by 2010, roughly 10 percent of Americans on the internet.
It is important to note that although Twitter is experiencing serious growth and changing the way the public connects with some of their favorite talents, Twitter is still behind both MySpace and Facebook for the number of users. According to Nielson.com, most Twitter users quit the site within one month of joining, and Twitter has a user retention rate of 40%.
Twitter does have one advantage over the social networking giants: Simplicity.
With the ability to constantly update from a cell phone, it is easy for clients or their agents to make updates (known as “tweets”), throughout the day and directly to their fans at lightning speed. Since the Twitter interface displays everyone the user is following in a very inclusive interface, it takes less effort than it would click on a MySpace profile. The lack of fluff and program filters on Twitter makes for a product that is ideal to break the latest trends in the Entertainment Industry.
With that in mind, it might be best to start thinking of Twitter as essential for publicity and promotion for clients.
And if you don’t have any clients, think of Twitter as a tool to use to passively follow the industry as you strategize your own business.