I need your help in making a decision.
They are after me, you see. They are closing in on me, and only you can help me decide whether I should fight my corner or submit to their demands.
When I joined Twitter in September 2010 I had no plan, no corporate brief. I just used common sense. Don’t swear, don’t say anything you wouldn’t want to see repeated in print, count to three and reread the tweet before pressing ‘send’. And apart from one or two lapses (which I’m not repeating here) I have by and large managed to not make a fool of myself.
I have, however, very much been myself. Which I reckon is the way to be. It’s how I am in life, I wear my heart on my sleeve. Indeed, one of the reasons I set up my own business back in 1998 was because I thought I knew everything and couldn’t be told I was wrong, an essential ingredient for every business owner I reckon.
But now that the business is growing up I am being encouraged to do the same. By and large I am not only agreeing with the changes we are making as a business, I am instigating or encouraging them. But there is one change that sticks in my craw.
They want me to become a corporate Twitter account.
I enjoy Twitter because I get to choose who I follow. And I never follow corporate accounts. Isn’t that what LinkedIn is for? Personally, I never look at the timeline in LinkedIn, it just seems to be promotion. I even mute the sound when the adverts come on between TV programmes and wait outside the cinema until the 30 minutes of adverts have finished and the film starts. I have a deep seated aversion to being sold to. And that’s what LinkedIn and corporate Twitter accounts seem to be.
If social media is like school then Twitter are the kids behind the bike shed and LinkedIn is Homework Club. Corporates spinning their corporate message to other corporates. Like a networking event where everyone wants to give away their own business card but aren’t interested in receiving anyone elses. Is that what tweeting through a corporate Twitter account really means?
But this isn’t about me. I’m not marketing to me. It’s about people we want to reach as a business – and that means not only potential clients, but also our peers, industry commentators, other professionals, journalists. So it’s you lot, basically. Real people.
So, you decide – should I change @ovationchris to @OvationFinance and maybe start a personal Twitter account? Tweet company and industry issues through one and continue to have fun through the other?
Or should I ignore the advice and stick with the one account? Carry on tweeting thoughts, opinions and bad jokes and don’t worry about the fact I lose lots of corporate followers because they wouldn’t really engage with me anyway.
I need your advice!