Do you need more than one Twitter account because of your job?

I was talking with a friend at the Social Media Club of Kansas City breakfast who asked my thoughts about his need for another Twitter account because of a new governmental position he had accepted that, for a variety of reasons, could be public facing in both good, and potentially negative, situations. He asked a "Yes or No" version of the question, “Do I need a second Twitter account for my new job?”

How to Decide if You Need Another Twitter Account

I instead gave him a variety of strategic questions to answer in deciding whether he would need a second Twitter account. If you are in a similar situation where you are considering a different individually oriented Twitter account for your position, here are strategic questions you should be asking yourself:

  • What am I trying to accomplish with a work-focused Twitter account?
  • Who is my target audience on Twitter?
  • What will my target audience want to hear from me? From our organization?
  • What will my target audience want to communicate about both regularly and on an ad hoc basis?
  • Does what we are trying to accomplish suggest it is more important to be personally or organizationally visible to our target audience?
  • Will the need for any organizational communication via Twitter outlive my tenure with the organization?
  • Do we expect to broadcast information (using the account more as a news feed), or do we expect to interact with your target audience?
  • What types of customer service or problem resolution responsibilities might we have to handle through the account?
  • What emergencies might we have to address?
  • What is the target audience sentiment toward our organization and its purpose – will they be interested in the information we want to share? Will the information be a reminder of challenging or unpleasant situations for our target audience?
  • What are all the things that can go horribly wrong relative to our organization and its audience? When these things happen, is it better to respond individually or organizationally?

I am sure there are additional strategic questions to ask, but our time together ended with this list.

Take the Time to Answer Strategic Questions

The point is you can make a quick and unconsidered decision or you can make a slightly slower, decision through asking strategic questions to help you better protect against the inevitable situations where things go wrong. Depending on the complexity of the organization, the strategic questions may need to be applied to related social media presences too. But it's not like answering these strategic questions has to take months. With a little consideration and an hour or two, you should be able to play through a variety of relevant scenarios.

So do you need a second Twitter account for your new job? What do you think? - Mike Brown


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