Twitter is a leading social network which claims over 175 million registered users, yet as we reported about in our post Where Have All the Twitter Users Gone the actual number of active users is considerably less than this.
And, to be honest, it’s not surprising why?
Twitter is a crappy User Experience!
Twitter is no Apple when it comes to the user experience. You couldn’t imagine Twitter using this in their promotional advertising could you?
What is Twitter? Twitter is thin. Twitter is beautiful. Twitter goes anywhere and lasts all day. There’s no right way or wrong way. It’s crazy powerful. It’s magical. You already know how to use it. It’s 200,000 apps and counting. All the world’s websites in your hand. It’s video, photos, more books than you can read in a lifetime. It’s already a revolution and its only just begun.
Which is unfortunate, because Twitter technically does do most of that, it just does it in such a way that of 175 million registered accounts, less than 10% of those have been used enough to follow 64 other Twitter users.
This is why Twitter requires a Steve Jobs, or perhaps an enchanting Guy Kawasaki, Apple Computer’s former chief evangelist.
Steve Jobs with apples IPod, IPhone and IPads has changed the technology paradigm, taking tech from the geeks and giving it to the cool set. Twitter, on the other hand is a geek product that has enjoyed widespread adoption mainly with media and marketing types.
Now don’t get me wrong, I love Twitter, I think it’s very clever, and it can be a very useful tool, but it’s far from fitting Guy’s criteria for enchantment, being likeability, trustworthiness and a great product. Now while experienced Twitter users may end up being Enchanted by Twitter, how many people can honestly say they found Twitter to be likeable, trustworthy or a great product when they first tried it? Statistically in fact, that’s not the majority of registered Twitter users
To illustrate my point, let’s take a new user through the initial twitter experience. To Start with they arrive at the Twitter website to be greeted by,
Twitter – the best way to discover what’s new in your world.
Now, that sounds like a good promise, doesn’t it.
New to Twitter? Easy, free, and instant updates. Get access to the information that interests you most.
OK, I am sold Step 1, lets register.
And we are in!.
So, Step 2, follow 10 people that interest me. Hmm, lets go with Twitter’s recommendations.
My 10 recommended people to follow are:
- @Rove1974 Rove McManus
- @KRuddMP Kevin Rudd
- @mpesce Mark Pesce
- @DoctorKarl Dr Karl
- @KateKendall Kate Kendall
- @Wil_Anderson Wil Anderson
- @paulverhoeven Paul Verhoeven
- @mariekehardy Marieke Hardy
- @joshthomas87 Josh thomas
- @GetUp GetUp!
All followed and in the spirit of expediency I am going to skip all steps involved with creating me a new profile and move right onto the end result of our adventure into the wonderful world of Twitter.
So, here we go:
Boy, do I agree with you @joshthomas87 Josh Thomas
Go @Devops_Borat, I love you too! Give my regards to your sister.
Hmm, maybe once we get to know each other a little better @mariekehardy Marieke Hardy
@mpesce Mark Pesce, Hmm, well if I was one of the half a million short statured people living in the USA, I may get offended a little at this.
@paulverhoeven Thanks Paul, there’s something I didn’t know.
@mpesce Mark Pesce well seeing as you dislike Dwarves so much.
@paulverhoeven Actually, Kwanzaa is an African-American holiday about the festival of the first harvest of the crops. Nothing racist there.
@mpesce Beheadings and titties? Must be viking hour.
@mpesc I am sooo glad that you clarified that.
@paulverhoeven I hope that’s consensual!
You know, I honestly couldn’t have made this up better than what has greeted my new Twitter user tonight. What do you think Steve Jobs and Guy Kawasaki?
I was going to make a video of my wife setting up a new Twitter account instead of simply typing this post. Kind of glad I didn’t really as I think I would have scared her right off Twitter.
So perhaps Twitter isn’t for the faint hearted after all. Or perhaps Twitter needs to take a look at it’s user statistics and try and work out why the majority of registered users never actually use the thing. Perhaps they can think of how they can create a truly great Social Networking platform by working on a great user experience.
OK, so flame me!