Twitter is a free social networking site that connects people through short messages. Twitter messages may be sent through a mobile phone, instant messaging facility or the web. It works like a web-based version of the short message service available on a mobile phone. The big difference however, is that a text message sent through a mobile phone cannot match a note sent through Twitter either in terms of its reach to millions, or in terms of generating a discussion about the topic that all those interested may follow.Let us analyze how Twitter works.Smart business minded people use Twitter as an advertising and marketing medium. Even the White House has been able to exploit technology and the internet to the hilt. A look at two messages on Twitter enables a visitor to the site to gauge its potential.The WhiteHouse is unveiling new government transparency tool today. Join the live chat at 5pm ET 9:37 AM Jun 30th from webOn Monday Supreme Court Nominee Judge Sotomayor fractured her ankle. Sign her virtual cast: 7:48 AM Jun 10th from Power TwitterWhile the first message shows how the site may be used to convey important policy information with links to the details, the second enables one to introduce an important personality, garner support for her and build a personal rapport with people. Any business would have similar communication needs to connect to its customers.Twitter may be used to communicate information about a business launch, product launch and product features. It could be used for customer support and damage control. It is a source for researching customer interests and getting new ideas. Its in-built simplicity and brevity help in allowing customers to give the business a chance to make its case.Twitter allows a business to form or follow groups based on the purpose. If it has a virtual pool of employees, group instructions and policy changes may be the key points of discussion. It could find out what competitors are up to by following their accounts. It could have customers following it and it could also follow them to keep a tab on their issues and suggestions.For a business to gain from Twitter, it needs to advertise its account on other forms of web presence or advertisements that it supports and provide links to those on Twitter as well. For example, a business that sells or rents out DVDs may make announcements on new movies through Twitter and add a line on its blog or banner that the latest business news may be followed through Twitter.