There are those who welcome brands to the Twitterverse and those who wish they were banned forever. The reality is brands are part of Twitter conversations and will most likely be part of its long-term success as a social media platform.
The argument against brand accounts on Twitter is that social media space should not be a place for marketers to bombard users with selling stories. Comments range from “this is where I go to get away from advertising” to “I want to talk to a person, not a product.” Find an article that talks about this subject and you’re sure to find a few heated comments from members of this camp.
Those who think brands should be allowed on Twitter realize that they’re going to be talked about—whether they’re on Twitter or not—so they should be allowed to join the conversation. Furthermore, brands provide a means for Twitter to survive without charging fees to regular users. The introduction of Twitter advertising models (e.g. – Promoted Tweets, Promoted Trends, Promoted Accounts) finally provide a much needed cash flow.
If you believe that people initiating brand conversations are more ethical than brands initiating them, you can simply choose not to listen. The opt-in nature of Twitter gives consumers an opportunity to vote with their engagement. If you don’t want to hear from brands, don’t follow, re-tweet, or favorite them. Just don’t be surprised if you’re in the minority. Many users appreciate the access Twitter gives them to brand news and information.
Smart brands realize the rules are changing. Consumers control most of the dialogue in social media and if brands want to participate, they must earn an invitation. Brands do belong on Twitter, but consumers will decide how much they engage.