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Tag Archives: Business

Side Talk

I don’t know if there is a debate on whether Twitter can make money. But however I found following Tweet by @ev which makes me think so.

Email: “Your domain name (twitter.com) has been found online. Please let us know your price.” (And people say we can’t make money!) [Original Tweet]

And also I found this article by @davewiner which implies Twitter is not making much money yet. And more here.

And to add some more details, check Twitter about page. Following is an excerpt from money section of twitter about page

While our business model is in a research phase, we spend more money than we make.

Hmm.. I went so far away from the topic. But later on you’ll realize that it’s “not that far away” :) .

twitter

cheers!

On Topic

From the day I realized that the ‘following’ list of a Twitter page lists users in order of joining, I wanted to find who is the first user. I was checking the very first users listed on following lists of famous tweeple. Finally I found the way in to Twitter employees’ Twitter pages. Namely I checked twitter pages of @jack , @biz & @ev . Finally I realized that I can’t find any one before @jack (jack dorsey). And by the time I was messing up with twitter API and I could collect following details.

$curl http://twitter.com/users/show/<user_name&gt;.xml

@jack
<user>
<id>12</id>
<name>Jack Dorsey</name>
<screen_name>jack</screen_name>
<location>SF</location>
<description>A sailor, a tailor.</description>

@biz
<user>
<id>13</id>
<name>Biz Stone</name>
<screen_name>biz</screen_name>
<location>Berkeley, CA</location>
<description>Co-founder of Twitter</description>

@crystal
<user>
<id>15</id>
<name>crystal</name>
<screen_name>crystal</screen_name>
<location>San Francisco</location>
<description>Twitter Support</description>

@jeremy
<user>
<id>16</id>
<name>Jeremy</name>
<screen_name>jeremy</screen_name>
<location>San Francisco</location>

If I try to retrieve time line of the user number one I get following result.
You can see that the message is created in 2006 & whoever created message has used twttr, the name used to twitter at first.

$ curl http://twitter.com/statuses/user_timeline/1.xml
<?xml version=”1.0″ encoding=”UTF-8″?>
<statuses type=”array”>
<status>
<created_at>Mon Jul 10 14:21:11 +0000 2006</created_at>
<id>9267</id>
<text>just setting up my twttr</text>
<source>&lt;a href=&quot;http://help.twitter.com/index.php?pg=kb.page&amp;id=75&quot;&gt;txt&lt;/a&gt;</source&gt;

However This doesn’t belong to the user number 1. There’s a user named 1 @1 :D & this belongs to him. And he has 73 followers :D . I hope this is the first twitter account. The only update of @1 is done via text. Maybe that’s done for testing update from text. By the way it’s Twitter ID 436.

Again went off on a tangent. Yes we’re going insearch of the Twitter user number one.

Following is the result I get when I try to retrieve friends list for user number 1. Request for friend list can be done by user number. That’s why I use this.

$ curl  http://twitter.com/stasuses/friends/1.json

<html><body>You are being <a href=”http://twitter.com/login”>redirected</a&gt;.</body></html>

Yes as you can see I’m being redirected. If you closely check the user details I mentioned before you’ll realize that user number 14 is also missing.

So finally I come to this conclusion. Twitter user number 1-11 are still there wasted. And the practical first Twitter user is @jack. And I want you to jump back to the first portion of this article. Remember we were talking about making money?

This money making idea is not originally mine. My best bud @seejay came up with this idea when I talked to him about very topic.

On IM seejay said :

“It means Twitter can make money selling those IDs on ebay?”

Hell yeah. They can make money (If they like).

I think it’s possible for Twitter guys to get those accounts back & I hope there will be people to buy those accounts for unbelievable prices. I say that because this actually happened :D .

Get some money and improve our loving Twitter dear Twitter guys. Give me few bucks if you like. well…forget seejay in this case ;) .

I’m not a marketing expert, I’m not a creative director, I’m never a business person, I’m just a tech freak. So how can I write an ‘Advertising strategies’ round up?. So simple, I live in Sri Lanka & pay little attention to media. I have a little but working brain in my head. So writing this roundup was a peace of cake for me. So here it is.

Be patriotic. Oh…sorry just pretending is enough.
This is a great way to sell your product to huge number of dumb patriots. As an example, imagine you are an American condom maker. This is still a great strategy for you. in your advertisement just say that your product is completely made in Sri Lanka (don’t worry. No one will ask you ‘where’s the factory) & Lankans can wear it with pride & screw any one met in the roadside without any fear. You are done. Check out election propaganda for better examples.

Be ayurvedic. No just say your product is Ayurvedic.
Hehe this is also a great a strategy. Just imagine you are still that condom maker. Advertise saying you add a secret ayurvedic herbals in your product. You are done. Don’t worry no one will check whether you really add ayurvedic stuff. People will love your product & if you do a survey you’ll find a lot of people who have experienced the ayurvedic power of your condom. Shhh…Just you & I know the real thing.
Note: You can sell cars, engine oils or anything with these two strategies. You have to pay more or think a bit to get the idea.

Say your product makes dreams come true.
This thing has proved its success through years in Sri Lanka. Lankans never have a happy life thanks to politicians. They just have dreams. So saying your product can make one of those dreams come true will gain you success.
More reference: election propaganda.
ex: For beauty culture products say
– your products can make some one a star
– your product attracts opposite sex
– your product results career upgrading
Just saying is enough. No need to try to make those things true. Put some wheat flour in coconut oil & some colorings as an addition; this is a good fairness cream if you can make a good advertisement. In Sri Lanka there is no discipline in Advertising.

Say that even the stars use your product.
This one is also an old but gold strategy. You can sell possibly anything with this. There are artificial stars made by media just to sell things while selling themselves.

Say your Product is from Europe or USA.
Oh…Wait…Wait… you can use this well, believe me. Yes you can sell things pretending patriotic. But still you can use this strategy too because Lankans really don’t love Sri Lanka. They just pretend they are patriots. Savvy? Need example? Just think why we pay 100+LKR for an US$ or why politicians are rich.

Reuse those strategies.
Yes for the ultimate success you have to repeat this cycle. You can do it without any headaches because Lankan media doesn’t have discipline. And the next best thing is Lankans forget things easily. If your product is not popular anymore just change the name & look & make few ads using above strategies.

On Rivira [Sunday 30th 2007] I saw a News saying world Bank has ranked Sri Lanka at 101 in “Doing Business in South Asia” report while Singapore comes first. It means Sri Lanka is not a good place for business. But you can prove this is bullshit if you use my strategies in advertising for your business. Good Luck!