If there is one great thing about Twitter, it is the competitive analysis that can be accomplished by following your competitors and their distributors. By following competitor's Tweets I can find out instantly when a new sale has gone live, if they've released any new features, are working with a site I didn't know about, or even about trade shows that I may not have known about otherwise.
Out of the few people following each of these companies/distributors is the information they give up to us really outweighed by announcing a sale to 50-100 people?
Another great way to follow the competition is to set up feeds for any mention of competitor names on Twitter. We've all done it for years on Google, but this is a must-not-miss opportunity to find out what others are saying about your competition (as well as you).