There’s an interesting post over at The Good Agency arguing that many Twitter feeds could be better than one. The principle being that one-size doesn’t fit all.
I take a slightly different tack. As a friend of mine says, “I’ll tell you for why”…
At Whizz-Kidz, we tried two Twitter profiles – a main profile (@whizzkidz) and an Events specific one (note I call them profiles and not feeds – because we’re not ‘feeding’ our followers, we’re engaging and conversing). But in honesty, the Events one wasn’t really ‘working’ so we ended up just using the one. The reasoning was this; people who follow and engage with charities do so for many different reasons (I know I do), and these reasons change. Why pigeon hole someone who may have done an event – and only ‘feed’ them events news, when they may be triggered to volunteer, campaign, or even work for your charity?
You’ve also got to keep up the content, and keep building and talking about topic-specific subjects…it could be creating a huge social media rod for your back!
Whereas from @whizzkidz, I try and talk widely about every area of the charity – from fundraising, to campaigning and also ask questions and create debate (I hope!). I signpost to different spaces (from Flickr to Youtube to Facebook to our website pages) and hopefully provide a friendly and upbeat voice with which to be consistent and holistic regards our communities.
Because I listen (and respond) to what these followers / friends are saying in their tweets, I’ve been able to create Twitter Lists to identify ‘fundraisers & volunteers’, ‘families we’ve helped’, ‘PCTs’ and ‘NHS friends’ – and so I know who to call upon when making specific asks and favours. I use DM’s and @’s to engage with different people and ‘groups’ at different times, and for different reasons.
It’s certainly also a resource issue. A twitter pal at another charity tells me they use multiple feeds in order to engage more staff and teams. This is is a nice idea, but also a luxury that only a larger charity can afford to employ.
Personally, I think one profile used intelligently – and evaluated regularly – is worth five different ‘feeds’… But that’s just my opinion 😉
I do agree with the author’s point that charities can harness staff’s personal twitter profiles more. In fairness though, of the tweeters that are using their own names (like me) they mostly make it clear who they work for and occasionally tweet news from their employers, so there is a lot of good practice already about.
Would love to hear others’ opinions and examples, as ever.