Let's face it: Since email as we know it today started developing from the 1960s, a lot has changed. The way we use email, the way that businesses try to get our email addresses to opt-us-in to their newsletters, and the fact that we tend to use email less and less as we send more and more messages through social media websites means that it may be time to start looking for more convenient forms of representing our virtual mailboxes beyond email that might exist. In fact, a recent report by Hubspot mentioned that Facebook is now our most popular way of sharing information, with Twitter coming in 3rd right behind emails.
Why Twitter? Because it's free, public, and open. It's easily accessible both on your computer and your cell phone. LinkedIn considers Twitter to be a standard part of any professional's profile. And Twitter, with 145 million registered users, has almost twice as many users as LinkedIn!
Some people tend to be personal on Facebook and won't welcome your message. LinkedIn has an infrastructure of "invitations" and "connections" and has a legacy of being a network for trusted professionals who already know each other. Twitter, however, is as open and free as any social media platform can be. Want to send a message on Facebook or LinkedIn to Guy Kawasaki? Good luck! But on Twitter, he (or one of his assistants) is truly only one tweet away.
So here's a few solid reasons why your Twitter username is your new email address:
1) It's Shorter and Easier to Remember
Imagine the scenario: You're putting on an event and you want to collect the names and addresses of those who attend for future reference. So many companies and associations will ask for your email address because they probably use email software programs that help automate their messaging. But have you seen these sign-up sheets after the event? Most email addresses are incredibly unintelligble. Twitter usernames, on the other hand, are generally shorter than email addresses, meaning a higher chance that you can actually read them afterwards. And someone writing their Twitter username may write it more carefully knowing that they will never be spammed by you (unless, of course, you decide to follow them back, but that is 100% under your control).
2) Your Message Will Reach the Sender
You've probably heard, or used, the oldest excuse in the book as to why you didn't read that person's email message: "Your email must have gotten stuck in the spam filter." Twitter has no such filter, for better or for worse. So you know that your @Reply, or if you are mutual followers, your Direct Message, will reach the sender. No more excuses, everybody...unless you get dozens of @Replys a day like Chris Brogan ... and even he will still find a way to reply to you!
3) I Can Also Check Out Your Other Tweets
An email address is a gateway to being able to communicate with someone electronically. But it's one-dimensional. You can send whatever you want, but if that person never sends anything to you, all you're stuck with is an email address. Not so with a Twitter username. Whether or not you follow them you can check out their profile and learn more about them through their bio, link, who they follow, who follows them, and most importantly their tweets.
What do you think? Is it time to make our Twitter username our new email address?