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July 23, 2009

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Dirk Singer

A really interesting discussion hosted by both Becky and yourself, Katie. I faced this very issue with a client the other day - would I be able to take on their twitter feed for them?

In theory of course yes, but previously it had been maintained by someone within the company who put a 'human' stamp on it. My argument was that whatever I'd do would by nature never be up to this as it would lack that key authenticity. I'd be one step removed and probably that much more cautious about engaging in conversations with people.

And from that point of view I completely agree with what you say - it's different to writing press releases and so on. So I encouraged them to find someone internally who could take on the role and who I'd get up to speed.

That of course opened up a completely different can of worms - the perception that it would take valuable hours away from someone's job and that they would be glued to it all day. Which is why we often get requests like this. On one hand you have 'must 'do' twitter.' And on the other 'this isn't a priority for someone.'

katie moffat

Absolutely agree. Twitter (and other social media activity) not being just a tick box means clients also have to appreciate that it needs to be an integrated part of someone's responsibilities and not just a time sink to be got out of the way and then back to real work. If only they'd look at Zappos!

Martin Williams

It's an issue. You wouldn't ask someone to go to the pub and have a pint for you so why expect someone to Tweet on your behalf? It doesn't make sense. If an organisation is serious about social media, not just playing at it, then you need a big time 'buy in' and that involves people taking responsibility for their own contribution and interaction.

I follow a number of big cheeses in the social media field and to be honest the volume and palpable secondhandness of their posts is irritating me enough to start unfollowing, as irrittating as obvious automated responses upon following (for example a link to a two month old article included in a thanks message).
Guy Kawasaki wrote this http://blog.guykawasaki.com/2009/07/how-i-tweet-just-the-faqs.html#axzz0PBt3elZD which includes a 'confession'that he has ghost tweeters and automated feeds. That might explain the tidal wave of noise eminating from his 'big brass brand' - what a turn off.

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