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5 Creative Ways CEO’s Use Twitter

So you want to excel at what you do, you want to be the best,  then the famous quote  “If you want to fly like an eagle don’t hang out with the turkeys” is worth taking note of.

To help give you that boost to take off and escape the mundaneness of the ordinary you need to emulate successful people and CEO’s certainly fit into that category.

5 Creative Ways CEOs Use Twitter

Bloomberg recently listed what some CEO’s thought of Twitter and how they used it for their personal and corporate brand.

So what are some of the creative ways Chief Executives are using  Twitter?

1. Tim O’Reilly – CEO of O’Reilly Media

Watch the alpha geeks on Twitter

How Twitter helps him run O’Reilly Media: “Twitter is a great way to ‘watch the alpha geeks,’ which is my shorthand way of saying that a lot of what we do at O’Reilly is pay attention to people at the edge and look for technologies that are ready to move from the edge to the mainstream that we can help along by publishing, conferences, magazines, online publishing, or activism. There’s this great William Gibson line that I use all the time: ‘The future is here. It’s just not evenly distributed yet.’ And sometimes we describe what we do at O’Reilly as ‘redistributing the future’ and helping it to get here more quickly.”

2. David Sifry – CEO of Technorati

To have questions answered

How Twitter helps him run Technorati: “I subscribe to lots of people who say interesting things, and I listen [and] read a lot. I find that these people become a sounding board for ideas, and I learn a lot from them. When I post to Twitter, sometimes it’s about interesting things I’ve seen or observed, and sometimes it’s ‘questions to the world’—where to find a good consultant for a particular niche specialty—or I ask questions that I can’t find easy or reliable answers [to] just by searching Google or reference works.”

3. Jack Dorsey – CEO of Twitter

Create smallness and a cohesive team by sharing small details about life

How Twitter helps him run Twitter: “It’s the fastest and best way to get feedback on what we’re doing, how we’re doing it, and what we should do next, both from users and my co-workers. Speaking to the latter point, Twitter makes our company feel smaller and more cohesive. There is something to be said about sharing the small details of your life with those you work with daily.”

4. Christine Perkett – CEO of PerkettPR

Connecting and pitching to reporters using Twitter

How Twitter helps her run PerkettPR: “We tweet about our own industry insights, technology, PR, and more—and people have been receptive and responsive. We feel we’ve earned a new respect as communications professionals in this way. We’ve had the advantage of receiving ‘first mover information’—benefiting both our agency and our clients—by connecting with reporters who often tweet about what their stories are going to be before anyone else knows about them (like this one!) and analysts/influencers—some of whom have shared early insights into reports or other important information that they only offered to their Twitter followers.”

5. Mike Troiano – CEO of Matchmine

To raise Matchmine’s visibility among thought leaders online

How Twitter helps him run Matchmine: “1) It helps make me more of a real person to my team. 2) It helps me stay closer to what’s happening in the lives of my own people. 3) It’s an invaluable business networking tool. 4) It helps me raise Matchmine’s visibility among the thought leaders online. 5) It’s just plain entertaining.”

So what are some of the creative uses you have found for Twitter?

Image by _DaniloRamos

Jeffbullas's Blog


  • I like the summation by Mike Trolano: ” It’s just plain entertaining.”
    I discover connections I would never have discovered outside the free-floating totally public world of twitter – Twitter inspires me in a very real and concrete sense, with materials as well as ideas to work with. This morning I was unaware of so much that I am now involved with to some degree or other – the Bach Cello Suites, the play “33 Variations” that Jane Fonda is starring in based on the Diabelli Variations of Beethoven – they “popped” up in the course of visiting the town square in the small village of Twitterville. Speaking small, what better voice that Mr. Twitter himself: “Twitter makes our company feel smaller and more cohesive.” All good. Twitter’s a great good thing.

  • Twitter is a great “add-on” to running a vaste number of activities, not just an activity on its own. That shows the flexibility of this kind of social media, a real-time, massively multiplayer multimedia chat with certain rules and an etiquette you have to get familiar with in order to maximize your results.
    Inspiring read.

  • Kristina McInerny

    It’s the openness you can’t always get face to face; businesses need that to stay in touch with their customers. Email opened that gap, but Social Media is about what’s happening now. Finally, (savvy) companies are realizing that Twitter brings the 6 degrees even closer AND they’re allocating resources to their marketing and customer services areas to get in touch.

  • Notice that none of the examples here are CEOs of what could be considered main stream corporations. Would be interested to read about how they use Twitter, if at all, rather than from these insiders.

  • These are all great uses. I do also like Twitter as mental “rest stop” at times. This is a bit like “Watch the alpha geeks on Twitter” from Tim O’Reily, but it gives more of a fresh wipe of the chalkboard when ideas get stagnant or I just need a mental pause to see which way to head next.

    The biggest challenge I see for mainstream companies is proving legitimacy and usefulness. As smartphones continue to change how we communicate and create/access information, I believe tools like Twitter will grow and become more of what we turn to for communicating with our audiences. Right now we still have a disconnect in the tools, the people’s habits and the benefits. It’s coming …

  • Ciao Jeff,
    good post (worth reading and spreading- did), and great blog in general… anyway you should refer more clearly to the author when you use Creative Commons materials like you did with the twitter green poster.

    I used it in http://meedabyte.wordpress.com/2011/01/05/two-words-about-twitter/. There you can see as it should be referred to the author (with link and info).


  • Brilliant article. I like the fact that several of these business leaders see the importance of listening to the market and using to learn. You can never know too much!
    Not one person said “use Twitter as a sales tool”. That is refreshing.

  • @melbourne_miss

    I use it mainly for research. By following the right people (people that have something different to say and have the same interests as me) I have a stream of compelling, relevant and fantastic information delivered to the one spot on a daily basis. Simply fabulous. @melbourne_miss:twitter 

  • I think it’s great too when CEOs take the time to read what people are saying about their brand. I’ve had the CEO’s of several start ups i’ve written about, share my blog posts. Which is really cool, especially given my blog is only 5 months old.

    Wonderful post Jeff.

  • NikWeb

    It’s good to see the CEOs from these types of company are getting in on Twitter. I’d be concerned if they weren’t! Following “people who say interesting things” is a good call. Anyone who gets repetitive or boring or starts in on the hard sell gets an immediate unfollow.
    These guys don’t do it too badly – http://www.deepblue-apartments.com/apartments/england-london/city-of-london.html