Why Twitter is better for Classifieds than Craigslist

Craigslist has become the standard for community classifieds; it’s more efficient reaching a local audience than any other local advertising media, and it’s free. But it does have problems:

  1. Craigslist advertisers / posters are generally anonymous, and thus less credible.
  2. Craigslist advertisers don’t have track records or eBay feedback ratings.
  3. It can take a long time to produce a Craigslist ad, and you need to re-create the ad to get it up to the top of the list a few hours/days later.

Using Twitter to distribute classifieds can address these problems:

  1. Twitterers, if they are not purposefully anonymous, have identities that generally tie into other social networks like Facebook or blogs/websites.
  2. Twitterers have a track record on the basis of their existing tweet history. Querying the Twitter name and identity on search engines may also uncover reputation problems.
  3. It can take as little as 30 seconds to produce a “Tweet” classified, including uploading a picture or video via Twitpic or Twitvid.

The Hurdle to Twitter Adoption:

Twitterers posting classifieds need a relevant local audience to sell to. We’re building the Breaking News Network of hyperlocal Twitter-based community sites to facilitate that local exposure. Later this year, each city in our Breaking New Network will be introducing a localized Tweetslist.com application that will provide local classifieds exposure just like Craigslist.

ilist.micro and #ihave and #iwant

ilist.micro is a Twitter classified service that developed a Twitter hashtag convention used for selling and requesting goods by Tweeting #ihave and #iwant. We’ve incorporated this hashtag convention for the Classifieds section of our San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York City, London and Toronto Breaking News sites.

Related articles:

Building a National Breaking News Network just like a Craigslist

About Pat Kitano

Patrick Kitano works with brands in developing hyperlocal engagement solutions and is administrator of the Breaking News Network, a national hyperlocal network devoted to community service. He is the author of The Local Network on Street Fight, and is reachable via Twitter @pkitano and email pkitano@gmail.com.

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