Opinion

Twitter might not be quite as free as it seems


Over a lunch the other day the subject of Twitter came up along with the usual debate about its value as a form of communication.

But there was another spin to the debate with this contact arguing in the last calander year providing content and engaging with social media had cost the company in excess of £60,000 in man hours.

This instantly challenges the notion that social media is 'free' because clearly there are costs to those that want to engage with it seriously.

it also makes you wonder if those vendors that are encouraging mass participation by resellers appreciate the costs involved might not be monetary but do translate to serious ones in terms of time and effort. Just giving it to a junior member of the marketing team to look after is not perhaps the wisest idea.

As the National Theatre found out last night after its tweet stream included a post calling a journalist an unmentionable name there are implications on branding and reputation that need to be considered with Twitter.

So it was refreshing to see that someone has gone to the effort of pricing up the time spent on social media networks. Resellers might well need to be conscious of a costing argument as they face discussions with vendors where the pressure to get involved online is significant.

This was first published in August 2010

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