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Monday, February 9, 2009

Social Media FAQs Part 1 - Profile Setup




I've received many questions from Twitter followers of GoalBusters and AFPNAZ regarding Social Media sites like Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc. and thought I'd send out a reply to some "Frequently Asked Questions" (FAQs). I'll focus this post on tips for setting up "Profiles."


Q1. Do I want to set up separate profiles. One for business and one for personal?
Yes, I recommend setting up separate personal and business profiles. Remember you are frequently "your brand" ask yourself... Is your brand different professionally and personally? Typically, we get to be much more casual/goofy with our friends and family. You have to decide how much distinction you make between your "Front Stage" and "Back Stage" presence. Should your boss and clients really have complete access your "unfiltered" side?

Q2. Should I use separate email addresses, or come up with a new email address that kind of covers all?
Usually you have to have a separate email address to set up the accounts. It's an effort to stall spammers. I try to use consistent if not the same email for the same personal or professional "identity." For example, my Twitter / YouTube / LinkedIn / Myspace / Facebook might all share contact info for same professional or personal "identity." I keep a spreadsheet to keep track of them all.

Q3. Are these profiles for individuals? Or should I make one for work?
I highly recommend you set up Facebook/Twitter/YouTube etc. profiles for work. Where else can you market you organization and promote your events and issues for free to people who self-identify that they are interested in you and what you do? Email blast, sure...but they are "push marketing." Social Media is interactive "pull marketing."

Q4. What name should I use when making a profile?
Pick names that are memorable and unique to your organization. You might also want to "protect your brand" by grabbing a few different "similar" names even if you only actively use one of them. You can block other people from diluting your brand either inadvertently or intentionally by grabbing the "real estate" around your brand. Secure names that someone might search for when thinking of your organization. Provide brief information in those "dummy" profiles which direct people to your website or other preferred profile address.

Q5. Is that necessary? Why should I bother?
Wouldn't you put an ad in the Yellow Pages if it was free? Consider Myspace. GoalBusters has a Myspace page, but we only use it as a "billboard/Yellow Pages ad." We provide redirection info to the sites we regularly update. You don't have to regularly manage sites like this, but it is important to have a presence in forums that enjoy millions of active users. Today's world is all about choice. Let people choose how to interact with you and they will. We've linked our Myspace page to Twitter and update from TweetDeck with a simple click when it seems appropriate. I rarely actually log on to Myspace, yet I update it regularly from TweetDeck. It's like simulcasting. Same message, same effort, no additional time invested, multiple sites updated.

We hope to see you in our network soon!

Connect with GoalBusters: LinkedIn - Alice Ferris / LinkedIn - Jim Anderson / Facebook / Twitter / YouTube / Myspace

To improve your LinkedIn understanding and effectiveness, see LinkedIn - Why it Matters and Tips for Success This blog details who is using LinkedIn, why you should care and how to create the most effective profile.

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