ExecTweets: Microsoft Turns Twitter Into A Crunchy Frog


An aggregated feed of Tweeting CEOs? Backed by Microsoft?  Is this the big Twitter revenue opportunity? Don’t make me laugh, says Joe Wilcox.

Sorry, but Federated Media and Microsoft gave Twitter a lame duck for its third birthday. ExecTweets is supposed to be a CEO Twitter aggregation portal.

My question is “Why?”

Federated Media and Twitter announced the service in separate blog posts earlier today.  Federated’s Matthew DiPietro writes: “ExecTweets cuts through the clutter and provides only the most relevant and insightful business-focused conversations—all curated and aggregated into industry verticals like Healthcare, Retail, Finance and more.”

Why is it Matthew’s description—”the curated and aggregated”—remind me of amphibians and not birds? Ah, yes, Monty Python’s “Crunchy Frog”: “We use only the finest baby frogs. Dew picked and flown from Iraq. Cleansed in the finest quality spring water. Lightly killed, and sealed in a succulent Swiss quintuple smooth treble cream milk chocolate envelope and lovingly frosted with glucose.”

[Well, the above paragraph just above does away with any future blogger networking with Federated Media, should I ever be laid off here.]

Seriously, I can understand why Federated Media and Twitter are involved in this project. Federated’s business is about content and advertising. Twitter is looking for a business model, or at least the inkling of revenue.

According to Nielsen Online, Februrary to February, unique Twitter visitors jumped 1,382 percent. Who’s using Twitter? The largest number, 3 million unique visitors in February, or 41.7 percent, are between 35 and 49. Eighteen to thirty-four  year-olds don’t even register in Nielsen’s accounting.

So Twitter needs to do something with all that growth and strange demographic of older users. Outside of high-tech, who’s old like CEOs? About 65 percent of Twitterers are over 34, according to Nielsen Online.

I see the Federated and Twitter connection. But Microsoft? Steve Ballmer doesn’t tweet, nor do any of his divisional presidents. Nor do many other top executives, for that matter. I count two Microsofties on ExecTweets list. As TechFlash’s Todd Bishop observes:

The absence of higher-ranking Microsoft execs is notable, given the company’s involvement in the site. But looking at the people picked to represent other companies on the site, it’s also clear that many other CEOs haven’t yet gotten on board with this whole Twitter thing.