Two weeks ago I started to experiment with multiple profiles on Twitter. Some of my friends have tweeted with questions about why I am doing this, how it works, and is it worth it. So instead of having multiple conversations, I thought I would put what I am learning right here and give you peak into how the experiment is going.
I’m not a social media expert, just a business person learning to use it effectively with some really great coaches like @LonSafko, @Hardaway, @StevenGroves, and @jenn_ex.
I now have five twitter profiles. @joankw for an eclectic mix of things that I share with my friends on Facebook as well as with my twitter followers at the same time. @CorePurpose is all business articles and tips. This links back to my profile on LinkedIn. Then I have three very specific profiles to have deeper conversations on the subjects I like the most @JKWinnovation, @JKWgrowth, @JKWleadership.
Reasons to do it
- If you Tweet consistently – and I do – linking to other platforms like Facebook, Plaxo, and Linked in can cause you to monopolize your friends feeds. It’s like crying wolf – when you have something important to say – no one’s there to listen.
- Your profile is a brand component. Multiple profiles allow you to keep your brand focused and consistent within each profile. People follow the profiles that have the messages they want.
- It’s easier to have real conversations. On the focused profiles, I follow publications and people who tweet on the subject – when we connect we have something to actually talk/tweet about.
- Don’t be a FEED HOG. Unless it’s meaningful across profiles,don’t multi-tweet. It’s annoying if your followers don’t have a tool like Seesmic that aggregates repeat messages.
- CHECK your spelling. (My biggest failing.) People discount your message if it’s full of typos.
- Find the right mix of tools. It’s a bit of trial and error but the right tools for you are out there and more are coming daily. (More on tools below.)
- Let people know you are out there and what you have to say. Thanks to the folks at TwitStamp for these fun and interactive profile stamps.
Ways to make work it without going crazy
- There are some great tools for those of us with multiple profiles. None are perfect, but my toolset includes Seesmic – great visual interface – and Hootsuite which allows me to ‘tweet later’ and manage the follow. It these two platforms would just merge into one, I would be in Twitter Heaven.
- Tweet Later – a great way to spread your messages across the day with out being tied to your computer. Early each morning I schedule a few messages for each profile to tweet later using Hootsuite. Then I log in later via Seesmic to read the feed, reply to conversations, or share more ‘in the moment’ thoughts.
- Set aside a specific time to do this then turn it off. It’s easy to get sucked into all the goings on and not get other important things done.
- Less can be More – I share and follow based on good content. So when someone follows me – I follow them. If it turns out to be spam or just noise – I un-follow later. That way I can find interesting new people and still get through all the messages in a reasonable amount of time.
How’s it going?
So far, so good. I have met some great new people, found interesting articles and blogs, gotten asked to be on a couple of radio shows to share ideas on topics I care about, and, wonder of wonders, found a customer or two in the process. Who knows, I may also find what I really want – the opportunity to lead and grow another really cool company. Not a bad start.