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How Do You Twitter: Chris Brogan?

interview chris brogan twitter

Social media sensei, Chris Brogan, is today’s exciting Twitter interview! Chris is the President of New Marketing Labs and helps businesses understand how to use the tools of this confusing social mediasphere to grow their business.  What better person to give us an insight into how he Twitters?

How can you trust a big name brand on Twitter? You never know who is tweeting, it could be anyone from the CEO to an intern.

chris brogan twitter
I much prefer when a brand identifies as a person on Twitter, like @MolsonFerg or @RichardATDell, but when you ask about trust, how much do I have to trust them? I’m not giving them my credit card info. I’m just learning something about them or having a dialogue.

How do you think tools like Twitter have changed the way we interact online?

chris brogan twitter
Twitter has become a fast-paced communications station for me. I use it with my business partners, my employees, my prospects, and my friends, all from one window. Because conversations are limited to 140 characters, the payload is often rapid. If we need more information, we can switch to email or phone. But it saves a lot in the “want to go get dinner on Wednesday?” types of messaging.

Will we still be tweeting in 5 years time?

chris brogan twitter
Yes, in some form or another. It won’t necessarily be “Twitter” the name brand, just like most people don’t stop to think if it’s AIM or Yahoo! or MSN. But yes. One-to-many micro conversations are a medium that will endure, if not proliferate.

When people ask you ‘Where were you when Obama was elected?’, will your answer be ‘On Twitter’?

chris brogan twitter
Yes. I watched the campaign on the web, using Tropicana’s special Twitter mashup, and also Why watch TV? It’s a one-way medium.

Are we losing our ‘real life’ social skills because of the increase in social media tools?

chris brogan twitter
No, but what’s interesting is, as online social tools are encouraging less real-world-socially-equipped people to meet up in the real world, I find that we’re flooded with a whole new generation of not-exactly-social people who thrive with the tools, and now need to learn their offline analog. I think it’s an exciting opportunity.

Should every business be using social media tools in some form in 2009?

chris brogan twitter
No. Not every business. There are plenty of transactions that are fast and simple that don’t require a lot of profile sharing and conversations. McDonalds consumer transactions, for instance. I don’t need to write on my order taker’s wall before ordering my Happy Meal. I don’t care if my oil change place tweets. But there are a lot of places where it will still matter.

You have almost 30,000 followers on Twitter, what an achievement!  How did you get up there? [Note how fast Chris’s follower count is growing, it’s up by 5,000 since I asked this question!]

chris brogan twitter
As of this moment, I have almost 35,000. I got there by being helpful. I share information. I talk back and forth with people. There’s no magic. It’s just about building relationships of value.

What are your thoughts on the power of the ‘Retweet’?

chris brogan twitter
I think retweets are a great way to feed the system. I think they’re wonderful for making a network light up and convey useful information.

Who would you recommend following?

chris brogan twitter
People who share your interests. If you’re not especially into tech, following @chrispirillo might not float your boat. If you don’t like learning about small business, then @beckymccray isn’t good for you. Follow people by learning what they’re into. One easy way? and plug in terms you’re interested in.

Anything else to say about Twitter?

chris brogan twitter
The magic isn’t that we’re talking in 140 characters, but that we’re sewing the world a bit tighter. I know about people in pretty much every time zone in the world now, and we talk almost daily. How powerful is that? It’s not about the tech. It’s what the tech opened up for us.


Great stuff Chris, thank you! Make sure you are one of the thousands following @chrisbrogan for a great insight into a social media guru’s mind.  Also check out for a great blog on social media.

Further Interviews

I’ve interviewed a whole host of other Internet gurus over the past few weeks including Guy Kawasaki, Tim O’Reilly, ProBlogger, Smashing Magazine and Chris Coyier so don’t forget to check them out.

Be sure and follow me at @paddydonnelly if you want to find out first about more exciting Twitter interviews :)

Comments (4)

  1. Nice,
    I like the fact that the interview was short and to the point. I think re-tweets are a very powerful and lighting fast relay system. It tool almost 30 minutes longer than twitter for the major news organizations to get the word out on Steve Jobs stepping down last week. Major events are broken in minutes now.

    Crazy powerful.

  2. Paddy,

    Great job, just noticed this today.

    I’ll retweet.


  3. rosie

    2 Feb

    How do you follow all the people who follow you with such speed, satisfaction and still keep your sanity?


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