Will it Blend? What do you use YOUR Social Media For?
When using Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and any other social media platform, who do you add on your profile?
Do you add business partners? Co-workers? Employees? Family? Friends? Clients? Etc. etc. When we begin to mix our various social groups in our social media, we may as well start planning for disaster.
Think about it like a dinner party gone terribly wrong. Your boss sitting next to you Grandma next to your ex-girlfriend next to your best client. It becomes a very weird situation.
Not only can it become strange for business, family and personal begin to mix with each other, but when you’re formulating your next status update, you have to be thinking about who is going to read it. How would you business react to your political statement? Will your parents appreciate that music video? On and on it goes.
The best way to approach this potential train wreck is to strictly adhere to the groups of people you allow on each one of the social media platforms that you use. Use one platform for business, one for personal, one for family, etc. At the same time, you must know that whatever you post can (and potentially will) expand beyond the parameters that you set.
So, the question becomes: how do you divide all of these different spheres?
Here’s what we would recommend:
- Reserve “Friend Requests” on Facebook only for people you know and interact with on an after-hours, friendly basis. Think about it as the people you’d go to the movies with, have Thanksgiving dinner with or play cards with. The group of people you’d call and catch up if you haven’t heard from them in a while.
- If you’re a public figure and would like to build a following then create a Facebook Page rather than allowing people to access your personal profile.
- Make a determination on how you want to use Twitter and Instagram: for interacting with random users? For following other people? For keeping friends and family up to date? Or for creating a following. Depending on what you choose will determine how you set your privacy settings.
- Use LinkedIn as a business platform. This is where you put your best foot forward. Have a great looking photo of yourself in appropriate attire for the business setting that you are in. Network with business partners and clients and don’t share personal information. Add to the dialogue when you can and share/follow topics that interest you. You never know where your next connection could come from.
These aren’t hard and fast rules, but hopefully this will give you a framework to work with as you consider posting on your various networks.