Friday, July 17, 2009

Pros & Cons of Multiple Twitter Accounts

I started with one Twitter account (@Lissansky), with a very specific focus on Social Media and Government 2.0. Then, as my account evolved and the list of followers and people I was following grew, I began thinking that I may be missing something. And so, here's what came out of that thought process:

  1. Professional Interest accounts VS. Personal Accounts
  2. Multiple Language Accounts - Listen to Global Conversations & Learn from Experts Around the World
1. Professional Interest accounts VS. Personal Accounts
I just recently decided to create a second professional interest account, one on web and graphic design (given the freelance I do on the side). Having a separate design focused account allows me to tweet on the subject, without loosing followers who don't want to hear about the latest InDesign Plug-in and why Photoshop CS4 image cloaking rocks! I also get to follow several hundred amazing graphic and web designers that share AWESOME tutorials and tips. For my second account, I was also able to take use the twitter ID
@ottawawebdesign, which happily was not yet taken! Using this Twitter ID will likely also help me the search engine rankings of my personal web site and potentially with getting more clients for my freelance work.

The third Twitter account I'm considering opening is a personal one - for friends and family. One small problem though...I don't have many non-workrelated friends or family members with Twitter accounts! I guess I'll have to wait until more than 2-5% of Canadians use Twitter (See March Ipsos Study:
http://bit.ly/zo8oI). I certainly do not want to tweet on personal topics in my other accounts and be considered annoying or a waste of time. But I guess I'll just have to wait until Twitter truly hits mass adoption.

2. Multiple Language Accounts - Listen to Global Conversations Learn from & Experts Around the World
Yes, I speak and write in 5 languages. In terms of writing, I am of course much better at some (English/French/Spanish) than others (Russian/Bulgarian), but overall, I would be able to write well enough to use Twitter (I'm not writing a technical manual here!). I would also be able to understand and/or inform myself on the Twitter norms in those languages, hopefully allowing me to Tweet as effectively and efficiently as in English.

Another reason for accounts in multiple languages is that I have often found myself wanting to Tweet en Fran├žais, but then I recall that 95% of my followers probably don't speak French, and that on my main account, @Lissansky, the only language common to all is English. Tweeting in French would probably cause me to loose followers. Thus, I am also considering creating extensions of my main account in French (@LissanskyFR), Spanish (@LissanskyES), and Russian (@LissanskyRU). Besides my desire to continue to write in the other languages (in order to not forget them!), I also believe that in general, we are not listening enough to social media conversations on a global scale. Given the languages I have selected, I can "listen in" on a much larger part of the world of conversation, and I find it fascinating!

This particularly applies to Russia. The recent article on Online Media Daily, the news portion of Mediapost.com titled
From Russia With Love states:

"No wonder Mark Zuckerberg [Facebook] turned to Russia for Facebook's latest investment round. When it comes to connecting via social networks, Russians lead the way with a monthly average of 6.6 hours and 1,307 pages per visitor.
That's well above the global average of 3.7 hours and 525 pages and just ahead of runner-up Brazil, at 6.3 hours and 1,220 pages, according to a new comScore World Metrix report. Rounding out the top five in time spent were Canada (5.6 hours), and Puerto Rico and Spain both, at 5.3 hours."

Yes, this study discusses Facebook, but could this not be the case with Twitter too?

PROS & CONS OF MULTIPLE TWITTER ACCOUNTS

Pros


  1. Ability to have focused Tweets, annoy less people, reduce "noise"
  2. Ability to follow people interested in a very focused niche topic
  3. Ability to have a Twitter ID/description containing the keywords of your topic of interest, thereby getting more relevant followers
  4. Ability to list your other special interest accounts under relevant keywords in Twitter directories - may be able to build more followers that way, than with one general Twitter account?
  5. Ability to follow people from many different countries/language backgrounds - i.e. not only English
  6. Ability to read and share articles that are not available in English
  7. Ability to tap into a wider community of enthusiasts (for my main interest: Social Media) and learn from them
Cons

  1. More difficult to manage multiple accounts?
  2. More time consuming
  3. Spreading my "engagement" too thinly
Your Input
If anyone has experience in managing several Twitter accounts, in both multiple Topics and Languages - please feel free to share your thoughts and advice with me and add to the Pros & Cons.

3 comments:

  1. Try Threadsy.com - watch/contribute to multiple twitter accounts, facebook and mail, all in one web page - sweet!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Great post, btw. Personally, I keep my identities separate (work vs home/friends/family)

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  3. Thanks. I'll check out Threadsy.com. So far I've tried Hootsuite and CoTweet. What I don't like about Hootsuite is that is uses the ow.ly URL shortener which according to some of my Tweeps has 301 redirect issues and may mess with you SEO linkjuice. I'm not crazy about the CoTweet interface at the moment, so definitely may be willing to switch to something that has all the same features as Hootsuite by a variety of URL shortener options. How is Threadsy compared to Hootsuite?

    Thanks for commenting BTW :)
    Ana

    ReplyDelete