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Being an early adopter pays – will the early bird pay out too?

Tanya Goodin
Tanya Goodin
CEO
6 July 2010

As somebody who regularly checks my Twitter account at odd times of the day (and night!), I’m always interested to see the difference in my stream at different times of the day. A night-time check-in (here in the UK) obviously reveals a twitter stream mostly filled with my US friends, though there’s always a few night-owl surprises in there too. Now, it looks like businesses may see a Twitter-based advantage to being an early bird too – or so the rumours are saying, anyway.

News is spreading fast among the well-informed that Twitter are getting set to launch yet another arm to their long-awaited monetization plans, following the (presumably successful?) release of both sponsored search results and promoted trending topics.

earlybird

With less than 260 followers at the time of posting, @EarlyBird is supposedly the next big thing from Twitter, with most commentators speculating that it will be a feed for promoting special offers from selected brand partners. Presumably a feed like this run by Twitter would also receive maximum exposure through the site itself – something that existing services like Groupon don’t have. The staff at Twitter are remaining ‘tight-lipped’ about the service (tight-lipped in a “Let’s get as much buzz as we can around this” kind of way…) and only made the following comment to website ReadWriteWeb:

“There are interesting things in store for @earlybird. Keep waking up early and you might be the first to find out what they are.”

Presumably following one more account won’t be much of a stretch for most Twitter users, especially if there are good incentives to do so – unlike Google, who regularly launch new products with users but try to avoid forcing them down their throats, Twitter have an interface and model that lends itself to subtly highlighting things they want you to try. It’s exactly the reason that sponsored search results and trends seem to have gone down so well – and most likely to be the reason that Earlybird discounts succeed too.

Surely the big money question is less whether or not Earlybird will succeed, and more what Twitter will be doing next?

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