Twitter is receiving almost as much attention as Google receives at industry events. In this interview from SES New York, Jeff Ferguson of Napster talks about TwitterHawk and the marketing power of it.
TwitterHawk is a new tool for Twitter that is still in the developing stages. It is keyword-based and allows users to create a variety of reply phrases to respond to people with. TwitterHawk usage costs 5 cents per tweet (reply) but can be purchased in advance through a variety of packages.
In an effort to build up a client’s Twitter base, Jeff decided to use the tool for a DJ for iGlobal Radio. He used keywords such as Radiohead, alternative music, Indie-Music, etc. When someone tweeted one of those keywords, they were sent an automated response that said something similar to “If you like Radiohead, you’ll love iGlobal Radio…”
As a result, TwitterHawk helped Jeff’s client to receive many more Twitter followers and created more interactivity with his followers. On the negative side, there were a couple of people that accused Jeff’s client of spam. Jeff responded to one user and found that he didn’t like that fact that a robot was responding to him and that it was a paid service.
Jeff countered the argument by explaining that his client wrote his own copy for his responses. Also, his client’s actions were completely human but simply carried out in an automated fashion.
If users only use TwitterHawk and are not personally active on the service, then Jeff says those users could be classified as spammers. His client however, is active on Twitter and used TwitterHawk to better target his market.
What are your thoughts on TwitterHawk? Do you think it is pure marketing or does it cross the line and create a spam issue?