John Edwards just started Twittering  a few weeks ago.  In that short time, he has already accumulated 1,261 followers and 1,341 friends.  Not bad.  Based on the Twitterholic leaderboard, John Edwards is probably one of the top five most popular people on all of Twitter in terms of friends/followers (although he is not yet on that list).

Undoubtedly part of his popularity is due to the curiosity of having a Presidential candidate on Twitter.  But I actually think the structure of Twitter works well for campaigns.

As Brad Levinson notes, Twitter feels a bit narcissistic self indulgent.  Do people really need to get these constant updates about my whereabouts every few minutes?  Nope.  Most normal people will play with it for a few weeks, realize no one cares about their cat and that they are writing for an audience of one, get bored and move on to other things. 

But Twitter is perfect for folks with a bit of name recognition who can build a list of followers and have a desire to live in the public eye (it is actually amazing to me that people have the time/energy to update 20+ times a day).  That's why the hype is largely being driven by prominent bloggers and Internet famous types who can pull an audience. 

The dirty little secret here is that Twitter is actually a bit of a top down system.  Regular blogging allows for trackbacks and commenting which flatten things a bit.  With Twitter these sort of connections are possible but are opt in.  While many (like Scoble) are using Twitter to make connections and have conversations, it can just as easily be used as a sort of newfangled version of direct mail. 

About the Author
Todd Zeigler
Todd Zeigler serves as the Brick Factory’s chief strategist and oversees the operations of the firm. In his sixteen year career in digital, he has planned and implemented campaigns for clients including the Pickens Plan, International Youth Foundation, Panthera, Edison Electric Institute, and the American Chemistry Council. Todd develops ambitious online advocacy programs, manages crises, implements online marketing strategies, and develops custom applications and software. He is bad at golf though.