Adam Westbrook // ideas on digital storytelling and publishing

When t’wireless met Twitter

Posted in Broadcasting and Media, Journalism by Adam Westbrook on February 6, 2009

It seems there’s no abating it’s popularity at the moment. Twitter is having it’s ‘moment’ in the UK, forcing its way into the public consciousness.

Here in Britain each week has at least one ‘twitter-gate’ incident, from Stephen Fry’s Liftgate to Phillip Schofield’s Thats-my-hedge!-gate.

This week we’ve become more aware of radio realising the potential of the micro-blogging service. In the last 2 weeks there’ve we’ve seen stations and presenters dip their toes into the Twitter-pool:

So what potential does Twitter hold for radio in the UK? Well, I think programmers have two choices. Do they have a ‘station’ twitter which updates listeners on station news, competitions and is used by everyone from presenters to journalists?

Or should each presenter create their own twitter profile and develop their own community around themselves?

Either way, Twitter offers some awesome opportunities to connect with listeners, and crucially interact with them. Presenters can reveal a little of their personality off-air (but they must be sure to respond to as many messages as possible), to build up the relationship.

During weather-events, as they like to be called, they offer a quicker way to update listeners on school closures than the website. They could even be used for traffic and travel updates and news headlines.

Unsurprisingly commercial radio is a step behind it’s BBC rivals, who seem to have realised the potential a little quicker. But the twitt-ability of the audience shouldn’t be underestimated.

The argument’s already been made “but how many of our listeners use twitter?” Well maybe not many right now. But the numbers are growing.

And you never lose points for getting in ahead of the curve.

8 Responses

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  1. James said, on February 6, 2009 at 10:24 am

    Don’t forget Iain Lee – http://twitter.com/iainlee

  2. Chris Doidge said, on February 6, 2009 at 11:02 am

    I feel let down.

    “Unsurprisingly commercial radio is a step behind it’s BBC rivals”

    Great blog up until that errant apostrophe.

  3. adamwestbrook said, on February 6, 2009 at 11:16 am

    Thanks Herr Grammar Nazi. You didn’t spot the typo at the top though did you?

    James, good shout on Iain Lee. Any others I’ve missed? Post ’em below!

  4. Chris Doidge said, on February 6, 2009 at 11:35 am

    LOL – you’ve put “it’s” all the way through it!

    By the way, Yorkshire-types would probably omit the ‘t’ in “t’wireless” and just keep the apostrophe.
    🙂

  5. Robert Price said, on February 6, 2009 at 1:24 pm

    And don’t forget your collegues in London at Q Radio. We have 2 twitters, one automatic with “now playing” information, the other manual for station updates.

    http://twitter.com/qradio
    http://twitter.com/q_radio

  6. David Lewis said, on February 8, 2009 at 10:33 pm

    @originalfm – we’ve been doing our twitter page for a couple of weeks now. We’re getting a good few sign ups a day without doing any publicity to it what so ever.

    News stories that go onto our website automatically appear on the page.

    The twitter page updates with a little bit of information about the show on air, and there’s the odd update from members of staff etc.

    I myself have had Twitter for a year and a half, it’s weird to suddenly see everyone start using it.

  7. Roy Martin said, on February 11, 2009 at 10:31 am

    Not forgetting little old 107 The Bee in Lancashire which has been using Twitter for about 2 years now!

    http://www.thebee.co.uk
    http://www.twitter.com/107thebee

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