May 06, 2009

Twitter Launches Enhanced New Follower E-mails

By Jesse Stay of Stay N' Alive (Facebook/FriendFeed)

It would appear that Twitter has launched a brand new format for their new follower notification E-mails they send out to users opting to be alerted to new followers. The e-mails are now in a prettier HTML format and include the new follower's name, Twitter username, and picture. They also include the number of updates, number of people they follow, and number of followers they have. While users aren't given the option to follow straight from the e-mail, you can block the user by clicking on a link in the e-mail.

It would appear as though Twitter is now competing head-to-head to the recently sold business, Twimailer and another popular e-mail service, Topify.  Both services provide similar data, and, in addition, show recent Tweets and other related data to the user to help in deciding whether one should follow or not.  These service also do the same with DMs a user receives through Twitter.  It will be interesting to see if Twitter decides to venture further into this area or if these other services will still be able to thrive.

The New Look for Twitter E-mail Notifications

With the current lack of API for new follows on Twitter (besides these e-mails), it will remain hard for any service to scale to mass proportions for free and afford to add new servers to meet Twitter's API limit demands and simple load for communicating with the API.  This will become even harder as advertisers cut back more and more on spending for these types of applications.

The Old Look for Twitter E-mail Notifications

It was for this same reason that (full disclosure), my own service, SocialToo recently launched a new prioritized e-mail service that you can receive bulk updates of your new followers, as well as unfollowers, along with information about each one. We just announced a new pricing model that you can purchase these daily e-mails for a one-time $20 fee.  Such a model was necessary to pay for a scalable architecture, and you can likely expect the same from many other Twitter apps in the near future.

As Twitter grows, with no known roadmap or business model, developers and businesses should use caution that their businesses can scale and adapt as Twitter, or Facebook, or any other social network or API they are building on top of has the threat to venture into their territory.  There is no word from Twitter yet on these new changes.

Read more by Jesse Stay at Stay N' Alive.