make our interest in reading their blogs grow.”
According to Twitterholic (www.twitterholic.com), a site that tracks Twitter usage, as of June 17, Obama has more than 39,000 users who follow his messages. Clinton’s campaign, which she has since suspended, also used Twitter and has more than 4,100 followers. Both senators used Twitter to send short messages on campaign events and happenings. And while Obama has almost ten times the number of followers as Clinton, he also followed more than 37,000 people on Twitter, far more than Clinton has.
I’d be extremely surprised if the two candidates themselves were actually Twittering. But the decision by the Obama campaign to follow users who follow them, as well as other Twitterers, shows a real understanding of how to engage people in a Web 2.0 world. While it is important to incorporate social tools to get your word out, it’s equally important to listen to the words of others—especially those with whom you wish to build relationships.
Brent Leary is a small-business technology analyst, and adviser. His blog can be found at www.brentleary.com.