Despite my initial objections (what will I say??), I find myself really enjoying Twitter. I’m not on there very often but — when I do visit (it’s like a little land of its own) — I often learn a new tidbit or meet a new personality. Those who visit more often or have an on-going feed on their desktop often develop a community. They have a group of people they chat with, exchange ideas with, and promote (usually through “re-tweets”).
I am, however, very cautious with my own “tweets” or comments. After all, all my followers will have access to whatever I spontaneously type and — worst of all — All Tweets Are Final. That is, you can never take anything back that you say on Twitter. It’s all recorded for forever more.
My recommendations? There are a few ways to prevent making comments you’ll dread later:
- Think it through: I know the format of Twitter is to encourage spontaneity, but take a few moments to re-read what you’ve dashed off. Make sure this is a comment you would feel comfortable saying in a business meeting.
- Consider scheduling your messages: Hoot Suite is a Twitter management program (free) that allows you to schedule your tweets ahead of time. I know! It takes the spontaneity and fun of being wild and free. But, if you tend to message impulsively, this will become your friend. Schedule your messages and then, if regret visits before it goes live, simply delete it.
- Give yourself guidelines: What are you comfortable talking about on Twitter? This will depend on your focus — business, personal, a combination of both? If your primary focus is business, maybe it’s wise to not talk about your morning bathroom routine. If you’d like to present yourself as a serious professional, perhaps your guideline will include “no rants or swearing”. Decide what you want to project and stick to it.
Twitter can be a great addition to your business — if you just remember that All Tweets Are Final.
Post-Script — Okay, apparently Tweets are no longer final! You CAN delete your own tweets now by hovering over your post and pressing the “Delete” when it shows itself. However, Twitter remains an instant medium and even if you do delete something, there is always the possibility that someone has seen it!