The Book of Tens 2010

Book of Tens: Media- and Marketing-Related Twitter Accounts That Don't Annoy Us

A Random Sampling of Folks We Don't Mind Following

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Dr Pepper @DrPepper You'll appreciate this one if you're a follower and a constant user of the product. No hard sell by the Dr. The account tweets messages, answers questions and has been known to reward rabid Twitter fans with T-shirts and such. Social-media gurus would probably counsel a much more proactive (harassing) approach, but we like the mellow vibe.

Popeyes @popeyeschicken Love that tweetin' from Popeyes! The chicken joint isn't yukking it up with as many fowl jokes as it first did, but it's still got a spicy tone and responds quickly and frequently to fans. When it's not helping you decide what to have for lunch, it's touting new store locations.

Virgin America @VirginAmerica Richard Branson, the company's high-profile founder and chairman, tweeted on Dec. 1 about a party the company was hosting, with folk singer Willie Nelson, to celebrate new service to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. Leading up to the party, a tweet from the company's Twitter page read: "It's a star-studded affair up here at 35,000 feet. From boots w/ fur to boots w/ spurs," referring to those on board the inaugural flight headed to the party in Dallas. Virgin isn't afraid of having fun. But while sharing about the festivities, they also tweeted about how the party would benefit the organization "Stand Up 2 Cancer."

Time Warner Cable (New York) @TWCable_NYC The tweets offer deals like, "TWC customers can save up to 35% on tix to Broadway play 'TIME STANDS STILL' starring Laura Linney. Ticket info here. http://bit.ly/eJrfBX" and a few members of the Ad Age editorial staff have had very positive customer service experiences with its Twitter team. The next time you have a problem with your cable service, it might be wiser to send a tweet instead of speaking with a customer rep.

Network Solutions @netsolcares Tweets are a mix of useful articles for customers (like a Q&A with a successful small-business owner) and responses to customer complaints, like, "I can help! What's the domain?" or "Yuck. l Can I have someone give you a call instead?"

Radian 6 @radian6 Didn't your mama teach you to be polite? Hard to beat @radian6 in the gratitude and responsiveness department. The tweets of the social-media monitoring firm are an endless stream of shout-outs to everyone from re-tweeters of job postings to readers of their book. And therein perhaps lies a social-media strategy from a social-media metric firm.

Dell Outlet @DellOutlet Sometimes we like to remind ourselves that the purpose of a company is to sell things, not to make friends, not to chat the day away and act cute. What does @DellOutlet do? It tweets about upcoming deals and coupons and then it tweets those deals and coupons. Smart use of Twitter? 1,570,863 followers seem to think so.

MTV Buzzworthy @MTVBuzzworthy This is exactly what you'd expect from a pop-culture obsessed MTV employee. It's on brand and on message -- even if no one over 28 is going to understand what many of those messages are. Tamar Anitai, the blogger for the MTV Buzzworthy Blog, tweets in a conversational tone, but when the conversation veers toward Ke$ha for president, we're half tempted to scream "Get off my lawn!"

Old Spice @OldSpice Consistent with its TV ads and social-media campaign, the Twitter account is filled with fun and bizarre tweets like: "Sometimes change is good. Like when chainsaws were invented and we all got to retire our axes to the walls just above our mantels."

The Onion @TheOnion Another no-frills account that basically acts as an RSS feed, serving up headlines from The Onion's website. But it reminds us why we don't check our RSS feeds anymore. The headlines will find us -- and the other 2 million-plus followers who stalk The Onion.

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