To Tweet or Not to Tweet - is NOT a question!

Yesterday, I bought the 31 May issue of TIME to read about FACEBOOK.
So, the SNS has reached 500 million users. WOW.
But the article content was dated and I was upset that I really didn't learn anything I already knew about FACEBOOK.

I also received a tweet that the latest ASCII research on Twitter in Japan says the average number of followers that Japanese TWITTER users have is 183. And that approx. 1% of followers are online sharing the same Time Line (TL) when the user is uploading tweets.

Since the 23 Jan 2010 issue of Shukan Diamond came out, which was all about TWITTER, any business publication in Japan worth their chops took up TWITTER.

Nikkei Trendy, AERA, you name it, they wrote about it.

But still, the number of TWITTER users in Japan seems to be well under its full potential yet at 5 million.

Given that in April, Twitter announced that it has exceeded 105 million users worldwide,

and considering that Japan is still the world's 2nd largest economy, having less than 5% of the Twitter universe residing on Japanese soil is a bit sad.

While Digital Garage, one of my shareholders in Brandissimo. Ltd, the private sales club I am the CEO of, has secured rights to establish a unique monetization scheme for Japanese Tweeters, whereby users can charge followers to see their Tweets, what is driving corporations and users to TWITTER is definitely the open platform and its ease of access.

Unlike FACEBOOK, who has yet to launch a keitai (mobile) application in Japan (without it, there is no way FACEBOOK can be as big as mixi or gree), for TWITTER, there is Movatwi, as primitive and restricting as it is.

But it does for TWITTER users in Japan what uberTwitter does for Blackberry users and the various TWITTER on iPhone applications do for iPhone users.

But why is it so important to be on TWITTER?

For us, in the flash sales business in Japan, TWITTER has the highest conversion rates - almost 10 times that of SEM and 100 times that of affiliate programs.

We have given to Nikkei Business 7 June edition some very exciting marketing data on using TWITTER to impact sales. Keep an eye out for it. And if you don't read Japanese, well, you may still read it here after the issue comes out.