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Is The Twitter Fad Fading?

Twitters growth from 2008 to 2009 was nothing short of stratospheric with growth headlining at over 1,300% .

Shows like Oprah and celebrity users such as Ashton Kutcher also provided popular mass media promotion that fed the Twitter craze.

In 2009 it went from 5 Million users to 30 Million users in 6 months.

In recent months Comscore, Quantcast and others have even reported declines in traffic as measured from the Twitter domain.

Blogs such as Forrester, Scobelizer, Mashable and Techcrunch have provided a variety of reasons for this trend such as.

  • “Twitter’s growth isn’t stalling. Rather, these stats aren’t capturing Twitter users utilizing apps, a growing chunk of the Twitterverse”.
  • “Twitter itself has a limited appeal. Only a small amount of people “have something to say” on a consistent basis.”
  • “They potentially undercount overseas users”.
  • “They potentially severely undercount users who use clients like Tweetdeck or Seesmic.”

Note: I just did a count of my Twitter stream and out of 100 only 12 were tweeting from Twitter, so the possibility of a severe underestimation of Twitter users is very possible as the calculations for Twitter traffic are only measured from the Twitter domain, not the Twitter apps such as TweetDeck that interface to the Twitter API .

So what are some of the developments and profiles of the maturing Twitter user?

I certainly have observed that the average Twitter user is maturing in their usage and the  Twitter adolescent stage is evolving as people find more business solutions, applications and commercial uses for Twitter (much to the consternation of the fundamentalist Twitter traditionalists). This is confirmed by a recent Forrester report which says:

“Twitterers are the connected of the connected, overindexing at all Social Media habits.  For example, Twitterers are three times more likely to be Creators (people who create and share content via blog posts and YouTube) as the general US population” . As reported in a Forrester report “Who Flocks to Twitter

Also a comprehensive look at the state of the Twitter universe is found with Hubspots “State of the Twittersphere Report – January 2010” where they have analyzed some of the key trends and changes that are emerging on Twitter which also highlights the maturing of Twitter.

This is a summary of their findings .

  1. The average user is following more people, followed by more people and has posted more updates.
  2. Bio in Profile 24% in July 2009,  53% in January 2010
  3. Location in Profile 31% in July 2009, 65% in January 2010
  4. Web Address in Profile 20% in July 2009,  41% in January 2010
  5. 15% of the top 20 Twitter locations in July 2009 were outside North America compared to 40% of the top 20 Twitter locations in January 2010 outside North America
  6. Top location in July 2009 – London and still No. 1 in 2010
  7. 82% of Twitter users have less than 100 followers
  8. 81% of Twitter users are following less than 100 people
  9. Thursday and Friday are the most active days on Twitter, each accounting for 16% of total tweets in our study
  10. 10-11 pm is the most active hour on Twitter, accounting for 4.8% of the tweets in an average day

I am still trying to find the real numbers on Twitters growth or lack thereof, though it appears though that it is still meeting a real need that  keeps many people occupied. Like me!

At this stage I think it is still “watch this space”.

So what are the real Twitter facts and figures in 2010? If you know, would love to hear from you.