Integrating Twitter into Your Life
When I mention Twitter to people not on it, they often say they simply have no idea what they would tweet about. The best advice I think I give people is:
Find a way to make conversing on Twitter a part of your life.
If you view Twitter as an open communication channel (to your friends and beyond) that you can simply tap in anytime you like – that understanding can make the process quite natural – and possibly less intimidating.
What to talk about?*
Consider this, in a given day, do you sometimes:
- See something interesting and think “I have to remember to tell my friend about this!”
- Read an intriguing article or news item on the web?
- Have an odd experience? (At the library? On transit?)
- Do something that might interest one or more other human
Any of these can make interesting tweets and give people insight into your life. Which is sort of the point.
Everyone’s line of privacy or disclosure is different. I am very private about certain things, and seemingly reckless when it comes to others. But I’m actually fairly tactical. I know what I’m OK with people knowing and hearing from me.***
The spectrum is quite broad. You have to gage what you are comfortable disclosing and what you think (and here’s a key thing) people you want to interact with would want to know. Some post mostly about business, Some mostly personal. I think aiming for some balance on this is great. Allowing others to have a window into your personal life and thoughts is useful – it helps establish relationships.
I’ve found that when I met twitters in real life the ice was already broken. It was far easier to have conversations from a point at which we already kind of knew each other.
How Much to Disclose?
And being interesting and intriguing helps maintains people’s gaze. But how interesting…?
If you want to open your circle of friends/followers, and so keep your tweets unsecured (read: public), you are for all intents and purposes, in public. Even if you only have 20 people following, anyone can check out your page and a search can easily turn up your tweet.
So, here’s my line (and, again, mine alone): If it’s something I would be comfortable saying at a party, it passes the test.
How Much is Too Much
In real life, revealing too much can make even broadminded strangers uncomfortable.
Consider these examples:****
“Just at the bank… Why do I always end up behind the guy who is making all his deposits for the year?“= Good
“Had an abortion this week.“= Bad
“Dating can be so frustrating sometimes.” = Nice Break-the-Ice Level
“I’m going through a divorce and my wife is making me sleep our backyard.” = Awkward Glass-Shattering Level
“Hey Tom: Time for Coffee Today?” = Yes.
“Hey Tom: You are a DECEPTIVE motherfucker! Why aren’t you calling me back?” = No.
Again, this is just my opinion.
Wait – No, it’s not.
**These you can even text it (or email) from your phone, if you like) as it happens!
***(or at least I think I do:)
****While I have heard of something similar to the third example happening on Twitter, the second was uttered by a guy who I just met for a dialect coaching session and the first was said to me (rather cheerily, in fact, by a girl I didn’t know in a film criticism class. (I think I asked if she wanted a french fry.)
Entry filed under: Social Marketing, social media, twitter. Tags: actor, disclosure, Don'ts, Dos, etiquette, funny, Me Like the Interweb, Monica Hamburg, personal, privacy, public, social media, speaker, tips, twitter, Writer.