Last week, I presented a webinar for BurrellesLuce on Social Media Literacy: How to Listen, Monitor and Measure. I have enjoyed getting to know my new followers on Twitter. In addition to all the great feedback, there were many questions posted during the webinar, so it was not possible to address them all. I’d like to clarify a few of the questions we did discuss, and answer a few others.
Q: Could you please define hashtag (on Twitter)?
A: A hashtag is a way to add additional context, grouping and indexing to you tweets. By using #ashortindex (not a real hashtag), you can make it easier for others to find your tweets about that subject. To follow a particular hashtag, checkout hashtag.org, which provides real-time indexing. For some great PR advice, check out #pradvice.
Q: How do you personally separate business contacts from social contacts on Facebook (i.e. two separate profiles or just one)? When is a tweet considered too much information? Can you separate your personal life from your professional?
A: Let’s look at these questions as one. As I said during the webinar, I do know people who have more than one Facebook profile and more than one Twitter username. But, I do not feel this promotes transparency. As hard as you may try to keep your profiles separate, people are bound to still find both of them. We all know information on the Internet, does not disappear. It’s OK to mix in the personal and the business. I don’t mind that my all my followers on Twitter and friends on Facebook know I like to share PR information, but I am also a huge fan of college hockey and the TV show “Lost.” I suggest checking-out the Word of Mouth Marketing Association’s (WOMMA) code of ethics guide.
Q: I work for a nonprofit with zero funds for consumer awareness and a PR staff of two (that includes myself). How can we work social media into our plan without it draining all our time?
A: It is easy to let your involvement in social media drain your time away. The first thing to do is to include your social media monitoring into your overall monitoring. Use tools to make it easy to scan what is being said about your organization, and review it quickly each day. Pick the tool(s), which will help you engage your audience, and don’t try to do it all. Remember, social media is just another communications tool, and responding on a platform like Twitter is fast and easy (only 140 characters). Our latest white paper, discusses ways to effectively manage your social networks and micro-blogging sites.
Q: Is this media being utilized by older groups (i.e 40-60 year old crowd or is it mostly for those under 30?
A: I discussed this question during the webinar, and although I know people over 40 are utilizing social media, Media Post ran an article, Women Over 55 Fastest-Growing Group on Facebook, which helped to validate my answer. Check-out the latest Don’t Get Caught blog, as well.
Keep the questions coming, and I will try to address them in a future blog post or webinar.