Want to know the value of being a "Suggested User" on Twitter? Jason Calacanis offered $250,000 to lock in that slot for two years. Twitter rejected the overture.
But TechCrunch has one of those coveted spots and now has 725,000+ followers - making @Techcrunch one of the largest Twitter users. What does that mean for TechCrunch's traffic? About 10% of TechCrunch's visits now come from Twitter - a staggering number and proof that Calacanis's bid was far from crazy.
Considering that Facebook has become the top referrer for sites like HuffingtonPost, it is interesting that Facebook isn't even in TechCrunch's top five referrals. It is also an indication of both the power of being a top Twitter user and the benefit brands can realize from building their Twitter reputations.
Of course this is also bad news for Google - who is losing share and focus from consumers, brands and marketers to social sources like Twitter and Facebook. Just as companies focused heavily on SEO and internet marketing over the last few years - marketers will be expanding that focus to the distributed web:
Top Sources of Traffic To TechCrunch 1. Google: 32.7% 2. Direct: 22.7% 3. Twitter: 9.7% 4. Digg: 7.4% 5. Techmeme: 2.4% 6. Other: 25.1%
"For us, and I’d argue increasingly for other large Websites as well, Twitter is not just about micro-media. The most powerful Tweets are those which point elsewhere. Or to put it another way, the shortened link may just be the most powerful type of micro-media there is. Those retweeted links are turning Twitter into a social broadcast media that rivals any other on the Web."