“The bottom line is authenticity”: Gabe M weighs the costs and benefits of Tweets, FB updates, and blogs

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Wondering what digital means will best serve you and your audience? Can’t decide between Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr? Here’s some words of wisdom from tech savvy Gabe M:

It’s a pretty big miscommunication about needing FB (or twitter or whatever else) to promote yourself. The bottom line is authenticity. I have to pummel that into clients all the time. Clients used to ask for forums and blogs because “that is how you build community.” BS. Active participation in whatever you do is how you build community. An unused forum, an unposted blog, a blank FB wall and an empty Twit feed all say one thing: “I don’t care.”

I always say “If you were a blogger you would already be blogging” to my clients, if I think they can handle it. The stuff is all DIY, so if a person does not want to do it enough to figure it out themselves then they probably won’t do it if I build them one.

So, if you like to post to walls then you build community on FB. If you like a less structured community, but still like posting and communicating with an extended group, you will twit. If you are a writer (not just by profession but you just like to express in more strategized forms) you will blog. Before Twit and FB got popular, everyone had crappy blogs. Now, fortunately, those people have moved to FB and Twit because that is more how they like to communicate.

A blog is the place if you want to actually say something. FB is where you create a public identity/image by saying “I like this and I like that, look at this and look at that.” Then fans get a feeling of who you are (virtually).

Twit is for super type-a peeps who don’t really listen to what other people are saying, so you better say it quick. It is similar in its ability to build identity to FB, but it is more abstract and involves paying more attention to the Twit trends so that you are being cool in the right ways.

If one is trying to use FB (or Twit) to market  but is not actually on there all the time with a strategy, it can possibly count against them in the public image dept. Sometimes it is better to define oneself by what one chooses not to do. It says just as much about you and will count into the public image that one is after anyway.

One possible “place between” for a blogger who isn’t feeling FB, but doesn’t want to risk losing the exposure, is to set up a feed that posts an RSS feed of their blog to their wall  automatically, shortened with a link. This way they are on FB, they are putting up there what is authentic for them, but they are not actually having to compose an identity strategy for their wall.

Do you have a preference or strategy on how you interact in the virtual world? Let us know which technology works best for you.


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