As an individual and a future public health professional I asked myself that question. I have for the longest time ignored twitting and wanted nothing to do with it, mostly because I just simply didn’t know how.
After reading Here Comes Everyone, Social Media for Social Good, and watching movie The Chief by Daniel Cohen, I was convinced otherwise and noted why twitting matters.
Here are my three reasons:
The instant sharing of information through twitting makes this social media a robust one. Exchange of the information is fast and effective. It enhances communication through live sharing. You can share information with thousands of people through a few clicks and find many folks in the community. In a field of public health speed can be a very useful tool such as sharing information about an outbreak of a disease, or calling for a rally or a cause and updating followers with ongoing twits.
For many nonprofit organizations twitting can direct traffic to the website and re-tweeting can enhance visibility and help branding of the organization. It is a great phenomenon how karma works in the field of twitting, the nicer you are to other twitters and follow them and re-tweet them, the more likely they will return the favor. It almost feels like the more the merrier when it comes to twitter.
This is one of my favorite reasons to tweet. As mentioned in chapter seven and eight of Here comes Everybody, you realize that twitter can bring together a collaboration. We know that many hands make much loader noise than one. So think of twitter as a platform that brings all hand clappers together! You have many people in even one community that share a common interest, yet they don’t know one another. For nonprofit and public health you can use this to you advantage. As an organization you might strongly feel about a policy, yet you need to get more people from the community involved. Though they might not feel as strongly as you do, using twitter you can capture their attention and have them join you in your cause. For them they don’t need to feel as strongly, yet you bringing them all together and coordinating an effort, will ultimately create a collaboration format that is strong.