When Oprah Talks Twitter, Traffic Happens

 
 
By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2009-04-22 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

On April 17, the super-popular talk show hostess devoted her entire show to a discussion and demonstration of the Twitter instant-message social networking site. Afterward, traffic to Twitter shot up a whopping 43 percent, market tracker Hitwise reported.

Oprah Winfrey has come a long, long way from being an unknown actress in Steven Spielberg's 1985 feature film "The Color Purple" to exerting worldwide influence on such things as book sales, education, health care, self-help-even presidential elections.

Winfrey's support of Barack Obama for president in 2008 may well have delivered enough votes to decide the election for him, some political analysts have said.

Recently she used her television show and Website to examine the Twitter phenomenon, and of course it boosted the popularity of the 75-person, San Francisco-based IT company in incredible fashion.

On April 17, the super-popular talk show hostess devoted her entire show to a discussion and demonstration of the instant-message social networking site. Afterward, traffic to Twitter shot up a whopping 43 percent, market tracker Hitwise reported.

On her Chicago-base show, Winfrey synced her laptop to an on-screen monitor and "tweeted" for the first time with actor-producer Ashton Kutcher at his office in Southern California. Kutcher, who also was talking on-screen to Winfrey on a Skype video hookup, had just attracted his 1 millionth "follower" on Twitter in a well-publicized race to reach that plateau before CNN's Twitter site did.

Later, on Larry King's nightly CNN talk show, Kutcher was congratulated by CNN news hound Anderson Cooper for the Twitter accomplishment.

Winfrey's show is syndicated everywhere English is spoken, and CNN is worldwide, so Twitter had the public relations day of its short life that day.

Also on April 17, 37 percent of hits to Twitter.com were by new visitors, Hitwise said. Facebook's ratio of new visitors in March was a mere 8 percent, the service reported.

Finally, Hitwise said that "Oprah" was the No. 7 searched-for term of the day and "Oprah Twitter" had come out of nowhere to be No. 35.

Never underestimate the power of a popular media celebrity.


 
 
 
 
Chris Preimesberger Chris Preimesberger was named Editor-in-Chief of Features & Analysis at eWEEK in November 2011. Previously he served eWEEK as Senior Writer, covering a range of IT sectors that include data center systems, cloud computing, storage, virtualization, green IT, e-discovery and IT governance. His blog, Storage Station, is considered a go-to information source. Chris won a national Folio Award for magazine writing in November 2011 for a cover story on Salesforce.com and CEO-founder Marc Benioff, and he has served as a judge for the SIIA Codie Awards since 2005. In previous IT journalism, Chris was a founding editor of both IT Manager's Journal and DevX.com and was managing editor of Software Development magazine. His diverse resume also includes: sportswriter for the Los Angeles Daily News, covering NCAA and NBA basketball, television critic for the Palo Alto Times Tribune, and Sports Information Director at Stanford University. He has served as a correspondent for The Associated Press, covering Stanford and NCAA tournament basketball, since 1983. He has covered a number of major events, including the 1984 Democratic National Convention, a Presidential press conference at the White House in 1993, the Emmy Awards (three times), two Rose Bowls, the Fiesta Bowl, several NCAA men's and women's basketball tournaments, a Formula One Grand Prix auto race, a heavyweight boxing championship bout (Ali vs. Spinks, 1978), and the 1985 Super Bowl. A 1975 graduate of Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif., Chris has won more than a dozen regional and national awards for his work. He and his wife, Rebecca, have four children and reside in Redwood City, Calif.Follow on Twitter: editingwhiz
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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