It’s been seven years years since Twitter’s Jack Dorsey first tweeted on the platform. Twitter marks this as its birthday and celebrates it by listing all the great things Twitter has gone through with the help of its users:
Twitter has, since then, become a ‘global town square’. The open, real-time platform is thriving, as stated on their blog: “Over 200 million active users send more than 400 million Tweets every day. Here’s to your creativity, curiosity and experimentation on our platform. We’re gratified that so many millions of you have made Twitter yours. Thank you.”
From its first hashtag to milestones such as tweeting from space, Twitter has become a daily necessity, and a remarkable news platform that celebrates information in today’s world. Not only is it a monument of our culture, it is a place for sharing, socializing and promotion. From its very beginning to the times where terms ‘hasthag’ and ‘follower’ are considered everyday terms and a ‘tweet’ supposedly considered a trademark, Twitter itself went thorough a lot of changes to become what it is today. From taking a stab at advertising with one of its first commercials, to one of their slight redesigns and new logo, Twitter is now an important factor in our society.
But what about the relationship between Twitter and brands?
With Twitter’s introduction of brand pages surely helping, it’s no surprise that brands have noticed Twitter and its potential very early, and therefore, later made Twitter-themed campaigns that revolved around the platform, followers and/or hashtags. Using Twitter as part of a campaign has not only become a creative way to be heard throughout the years, but in some way even a necessity. One of the most famous campaigns that used Twitter in this manner is supposedly Nike, with its #makeitcount campaign from January last year.
Others would include campaigns such as Dove’s massive interactive billboard at London’s Victoria Station that showed #DOVELOVE questions and responses asked on Twitter, while Samsungs’ “Create My Tweet” campaign included illustrators sketching tweets; A similar thing done by artist Greg Burney, when he, not surprisingly, gained a huge number of followers by promising to sketch all of them. SMART has also used Twitter for a much smaller yet equally amusing campaign; It showed all the benefits of owning such a small car, and what better way to highlight the cars size than in a 140 character tweet.
A few big brands wanted to combine the power of twitter and music as well. British Airways supported Great Britain’s Olympic team by taking fan generated Twitter content, and transforming it into a symphony, while Red Bull converted ‘Tweets into Beats’ for its Beat Suite campaign back in May 2012. Pepsi also joined Twitter and music together as part of their “Live for Now” campaign, focusing on their Twitter page, where fans were able to find exclusive music content on a weekly basis.
Of course, not all Twitter campaigns went well – in fact, Starbucks’ campaign went horribly wrong. But it’s interesting to see how brand’s cope with backfired social campaigns – Sainsbury’s, for instance, issued a very original apology via Twitter.
Through these examples we are able too see how far has Twitter really come in our everyday lives, as well as in the lives of brands. With experimenting and initializing campaigns and creative ideas via the platform, we can learn and make new ones, using what Twitter, as a massive platform that it is, offers us.
In the end, those who made Twitter big are those who use it and play with it, tweaking it and finding new ways of social and sharing experiences, and it’s always a thrill seeing new ways the platform can be used, being by brands or individuals. Nevertheless, it is safe to say that Twitter has become a big part of brand promotion, being that its more personal and engaging; In seven years it has become a necessity in everyday life, as well as in the big world of brands.
We are excited to see new ways the platform can be used and new Twitter-themed campaigns to come. Until then, we wish Twitter a very happy birthday!