The growth of Twitter in Australia

As of June 2013, more than half of Australia’s population are active on the world’s favourite social network, Facebook. Facebook is now well and truly over the one-billion users mark, expanding from a basic means of communication to an interactive floor for businesses, consumers and brands since its formation in 2004. In comparison, Twitter is not too far behind… After an initially slow start, Twitter in Australia is rising in popularity with almost 10% of the population connected after seeing an increase of 300,000 users over the past financial year, becoming the preferred medium of brand to consumer interactivity.

We are nowadays less bombarded by the media to “Like us on Facebook”, but more inclined to “Join the conversation” on Twitter; Reality shows play on the more interactive feature of tweeting, showing live updates as the show goes on. This became more evident following the 2013 Academy Awards, where 8.9 million tweets made it the then-biggest trending topic of all time. While it’s highly unlikely that all Aussies (and specifically those beyond Generation Y) are paying attention, it does prove that a growing trend has emerged – consumers no longer just want what they’re selling, but they want to be a part of what is being sold.

Encouraging consumers to get involved gives them the power to become the greatest marketers of the brand; Hashtags, tagging and mentions on Twitter alone can be found instantly by a click or a search by almost anybody who has an active account, regardless of whether or not they are being ‘followed’. The viral factor on Twitter is rising to become more accessible, and while Facebook is still a great tool to build brand awareness, Twitter is emerging to be more innovative and more involved with their clientele.

Facebook caters to easy user-to-user communication and is generally more informative. However, to effectively connect with its customers, a business can no longer solely remain on the appeal of Facebook. Twitter has become more accessible by offering simple but constant updates, and has encouraged people to become more involved with a brand.