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Twitter experienced 1,382% year-over-year growth in February 2009, with the number of total unique visitors increasing from 475,000 in February 2008 to seven million last month, according to Nielsen Online. This increase makes Twitter the fastest growing member community site for the month.

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Zimbio and Facebook , which were the second and third-fastest growing communities, posted triple-digit growth, with the number of visitors to those sites increasing 240% and 228%, respectively.

Fastest Growing Member Communities

According to Nielsen Online, Twitter.com continues to grow in popularity and importance in both the consumer and corporate worlds, where it has morphed into a tool with which brands can reach customers and other stakeholder constituents.

The ability to access Twitter through the PC-based web, the mobile web, and through text messages is also a factor in the site’s growth, Nielsen said.

Twitter Most Popular Among Working Adults

Contrary to the belief that Tweeters are mostly teens, college students or friends just trying to stay in touch, Twitter is used by a larger percentage of older people and is often accessed from the workplace, Nielsen said.

In February 2009, adults ages 35-49 had the largest representation on Twitter, with nearly 3 million unique visitors from this age group. This comprises nearly 42% of the site’s audience.

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Nielsen also reports that most visits to Twitter are taking place from work. Some 62% of the combo unique audience accesses the site from work only, compared with only 35% who access it only from home.

Twitter On The Move

Another of the main reasons for Twitter’s success is the ability to use it via mobile devices – either through the mobile web or through text messages. In January 2009, 735,000 unique visitors accessed the Twitter website through their mobile devices, and the average unique visitor went to Twitter.com 14 times during the month and spent an average of seven minutes on the site.

In Q4 2008, there were 812,000 unique users who sent or received Twitter text messages from AT&T or Verizon cell phones. There was an average of nearly 240 Tweets per person for the quarter.

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