Monthly Archives: June 2011

How much is TMI online?

Facebook has finally reached my personal threshold of TMI. The world’s largest social media network it seems is expanding again with opportunities to put even more personal information out there for all the world to know. Most recently, I noticed that you can now add your blood type to your Facebook profile. No, I’m not kidding. I wish I were. Because it’s one of the things I use to kid about when ever a telephone customer service rep would start asking questions to verify my identity.

“Mother’s maiden name? Sure. Need my blood type too? How about the first day of my last menstrual cycle?”

Realizing we live in a world where the idea of personal privacy is almost quaint, I have to wonder if my ardent appall of this development is a sign of my age. I choose to believe no. If you need to know my blood type to know me, sorry, I guess we can’t be friends. Of course, we have a choice about how much information we choose to share. My rule of thumb is if I wouldn’t share it with a co-worker at the water-cooler it doesn’t belong online. This is the rule I generally give to consulting clients as well who might be new to social media and justifiably daunted by the public nature of it all. It’s a blanket rule that should apply to pictures and videos as well. The internet is a wonderful thing. And Social Media connects us in ways unthinkable just a few years ago. But it’s important to know how much is Too Much Information online. Pick a rule you’re comfortable with and stick to it. Just because they ask doesn’t necessarily mean you have to answer.

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Filed under Consulting, Social Media, Updates

Waste not, Want not – Your time on Twitter

ProBlogger put out a graphic today posing the question, “is Twitter a waste of time?”

The graphic and article suggest that because Twitter isn’t as widely used as Facebook, that it’s not a good investment of time, most specifically for marketers. That’s one way of looking at it, but for those interested in communication and the ongoing narrative it creates, whether or not the platform sells more toothpaste is kind of irrelevant.

Consider this:

Social Media consultants generally don’t recommend confining oneself to just Twitter. Most Social Media specialists, this one included, recommend a combined strategy using Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other platforms based on the needs of the client.

This very well may be true, but I would bet a large portion of those without followers are phishing accounts, which are disabled once the community identifies them as such. Also, many may believe that if you Tweet it, they will come. Not necessarily so. Attracting Twitter followers takes time and dedication. The biggest reason people you don’t know will follow you is because they like what you have to say.

Reposts AKA ReTweet (RT) are actually a good way to get followers.  It’s not just about what you yourself have to say, but about what you put out there. Most successful Tweeters have a beat that they tweet about. They attain followers based on that.

This is what actually makes Twitter such a cool thing. It gives one the opportunity to be part of a worldwide online conversation. True, not every conversation is intellectually stimulating, but it’s become a way to record collective consciousness. Kinda cool.

What it comes down to is Twitter is an acquired skill. Not a hard one, but something that can be learned.  With a little strategy, patience and effort they will come if you Tweet it.

Kind of ironic considering the instantaneous nature of it all.

 

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Filed under Consulting, Message, Social Media