Genuine question, are twitter streams on websites useful for anything other than making the site appear less static? I’m trying to see if there has been any research/findings on these types of streams.
I don’t have any specific research, but I’ve found them valuable in the past as a way to passively advertise content to your readers.
I think there can be some value in “at a glance” seeing how the individual/organisation uses Twitter. You can quickly gauge whether they’re someone who is quite personal, or just broadcasts their blog posts, or is high volume and off-topic, which may influence whether you choose to click through and explore more of their timeline, bio, follower/following counts etc, and decide whether or not to follow them yourself.
That interaction of choosing to follow can result in a much deeper degree of engagement down the track—retweeting articles, responding to comments/questions, favouriting tweets—all activities that relate to trust, relationship building, and potentially spending money.
So yeah, I reckon there is potential value. But only if the content of the feed is quality and likely to encourage relationship building.