Networking and the 2 faces of social media
There was an interesting debate on the business forum 4N and A lot of opinions on whether your Twitter or Facebook account should be held in your business or personal name.
I take the view it depends on your intended audience. I have friends who share my interests and so my personal Twitter is different to the commercial one. It doesn’t make me any less honest, it’s just the personal one tends to be focused on the shared memories, interests and experiences common to those friends. Anyone not part of that shared history would find it cliquey, of course it is, it’s part of an ongoing conversation between close friends about stuff we have done together. I am not building my own personal brand among my friends so it makes sense, to me, to keep the two feeds separate.
Business and Social Media
The business one is wider, it’s all encompassing with each message self-explanatory, if you have just tuned in then you can understand what is happening. It’s not a clique, it’s designed to be very clearly an open conversation, like the ones we have and encourage people to join when out networking.
As part of what we do in our consulting Actionistas manages online and off-line business reputations. A chance conversation about something you would prefer to be kept quiet will come up sooner or later on Google. It will come up attached to a search for your business, so not the best introduction to that new prospect or client. So, you have the best salesman or woman in your business, loads of contacts and lots of interesting stuff going on, however even though they are a sales dream, they are a personal road crash if their social media shows them in all aspects of their life including the messy evenings out and crude jokes. Tidy up the presentation, it’s more respectful of your audience.
You make the choice on whether you want, as a business owner, your clients knowing how often the sales person copped off or got off his/her head on drugs or alcohol and see how attractive ‘being real via Social Media’ works for your business.
Private -V- Business Social Media Accounts
Our experience is micro businesses serving a small client base personally, do well, with a bit of care, on private accounts. They have limited time, work and personal life overlaps and it’s a great way of keeping in touch. As it’s the business owner managing their own reputation, they can take care in what is broadcast or live with the consequences. They can wind in their approach by monitoring followers, if they lose some, check it out and sort out their online ‘face’.
Think before you post or tweet
So think before you tweet or post on Facebook, if you feel the need to post up via your phone or iPad every event, however small, chances are your addiction will get uncomfortable some time soon. If this is you, consider a more thoughtful business blog, after all its your reputation on the line and a slight distance can make a big difference.
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