First, Manage Expectations

While I’ve test-driven all manner of vehicles for managing social media use, none have given me back more of my life and my sanity than something I created myself: a Twitter policy.

Or rather, my policy; I was inspired to create it after stumbling on one created by Ike Piggott(who has since become an online friend), and reassured that this was a good and useful thing after reading policies created by other, more famous folk on the web, like geek icon Wil Wheaton. It was early in 2009, when Twitter started achieving some serious critical mass, overwhelming several of us old-timers who’d been futzing around with it like the old-old-timers did with Usenet. (Look it up!)

Now that Twitter has been widely adopted and we’ve all been exposed to myriad ways to engage on it, there’s less chance of disappointing someone because you use Twitter differently than they do. But I still think there’s great value in linking to a page that defines you through the lens of Twitter usage rather than a general “about” or landing page. You wouldn’t introduce yourself to someone at the dog park the same way that you would at a networking event; why greet people coming from Twitter the same way you do people finding you via LinkedIn, the ASMP site, or a Google search?

As with all digital marketing, the number one rule of social media (after “don’t use it to spam people”) is “be yourself”. Creating a policy, and a page to go with it, is a simple, effective way of doing just that.

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