It’s often a dilemma when you are social networking: just how much information should you share, when the definition of social media is lead by the word social.
If you have your own business or are a consultant then the answer is probably quite easy. You can blur the work/life balance so that existing and prospective clients can get to to know you, the real you, leading to great engagement and connection.
However if you are representing an organisation and there needs to be clear water between your personal life and the brands, products and services you represent, then you and your organisation need to establish clear boundaries.
Speak to any social media or digital marketing specialist worth their fee and they will tell you that it’s vital to share often as much as one third of all the content you publish, things that enable others to get to know you. So the pressure is on. How do you balance things to tick the ‘social’ box at the same time as protecting your most intimate secrets and family life?
Begin by making a list of everything that is important to you and your business and that potentially you might share in social media. Then place each item into one of three boxes: Private, Personal, Professional.
By definition, Private is just that; things you will only share with your family and close friends through your private social media accounts. For me it’s my life vision, my close family relationships and photos.
Personal is a list of things that you don’t mind being in public but they can help others, in a business sense, to get to know you. For me it would be about my nomadic work lifestyle, the sport and fitness I enjoy and the places to which I travel.
Professional is all about the day to day operations, the business, the products and services and how we interact with them. Not promotional stuff, but more the part we play in creating, improving and delivering them.
By carefully dividing up all the possible subjects into these boxes, we can rest assured we are being consistent and relevant and have appropriate and agreed boundaries with the businesses we represent.