Trix are for kids. And Twitter is for twits.
If my father were still alive, that’s what he would have said. Maybe he’d have skipped the part about the fruity cereal — he didn’t allow my brother and me to eat Trix — but he definitely would have chimed in with a derisive comment about CEOs who banked on 140-character communications for their business success.
I would have argued with him and he would have called me a twit. It was one of his favorite words but one directed more often at my brother than me.
My father loved words and, though he could sometimes carry on an entire conversation without exceeding Twitter’s space limit, he would have objected to the idea of being controlled by it.
And laughed at the idea of grown men typing messages to an invisible audience. Or about the idea of grown men typing at all.
That’s what secretaries were for. His views about men, women and business have no place in the new millennium. But I confess to agreeing with one part of his outdated thinking: a lot of people behave like twits on Twitter and other forms of social media.
Will Social Media Die of Boredom?
And I’m not talking about headline-producing PR blunders like sharing nude photos and drug-fueled rants. I’m talking about the far more harmful — and more prevalent — faux pas committed on social media sites:
Saying nothing of interest.
If you have nothing to say, you don’t need 140 characters. You don’t need any.
Hundreds of thousands, if not hundreds of millions of business owners or members of their marketing departments faithfully post tweets once or several times daily. Most should stop.
More tweeting is not better tweeting. Dull tweeting is just twitting.
If you don’t have anything to say, keep quiet. Don’t broadcast your lack of thoughts to a universal audience.
It’s better to quit than twit.
It’s not Twitter’s fault. Twitter is just a tool. And a tool doesn’t make anyone an expert.
I could buy out Home Depot’s entire inventory of power drills, and I still wouldn’t be able to build a table — or even hang my Pottery Barn sconces properly. I am not a carpenter or a woodworker or any kind of builder or fixer.
Except when it comes to words. Tools like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn make me a better word artisan because they add power to my messages. They make my job easier, faster and more efficient.
Social media can provide unparalleled power to your content marketing strategy if you learn how to use the tool.
When Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone, the first words he spoke on the device were “Mr. Watson — come here — I want to see you.”
It was about as interesting as a Twitter post that says, ‘Here’s my link. Click on it.”
The telephone did not make anyone a telemarketer or a witty conversationalist. It was just a tool that expanded the possibilities of communication. Social media does the same thing.
It makes it possible to inform, educate and engage your audience in ways neither Bell nor my father ever imagined.
Or it can make you look like a silly rabbit.
Don’t be a twit — post a comment below! (please) I really welcome your thoughts about social media and how it has affected your personal or company brand.