The question really got me thinking. Each platform has a specific personality. All postings should be based on your audience, but you have to think about how they want to hear your valuable information. Do they want to read an extensive study? Would they prefer a humorous anecdote. What are they looking for? An easy way to make that decision is: What kind of attire is your audience wearing when they read your post?”
LinkedIn has changed a LOT in the past few years. It has become a powerful tool for professional connections. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard the reply when asked for a resume “just look me up on LinkedIn.”
Today everyone uses LinkedIn and if you don’t have a LinkedIn account stop reading and go set up your profile, NOW. For all your content on LinkedIn, you have to think about your audience (duh). If you are looking for a new position, a business connection, or even to show off your new job to an old rival, you want to be seen as very professional. As you would expect the person reading your content to be professional. They might be wearing a suit or some really sophisticated business attire.
When you walk into a room full of well dressed professionals you usually speak more formally. The basics of proper grammar and using full names in introductions are usually adopted. Most people stay away from colloquialisms. We all want to be thought of as the “smartest person in the room,” so we try and put out that vibe.
Twitter is a different story as far as grammar is concerned. With a shortage of words (140 characters) people tend to become very inventive. However, the audience issues is still the same. When do people look at their twitter feed?- all day or at least we hope so.
Most people are at work during the day or out living their lives. Typically, if they are at work, they aren’t wearing their pajamas as a lot of companies don’t really like you to wear jeans to work. That puts most of the average audience wearing khakis and button ups or polo shirts.
This is a more casual conversation but still not “just chatting with your best friend.” You aren’t always sure who’s going to be reading your feed so you don’t want to sound like an idiot and you don’t want to sound like a snob. Focus on the professional chat with a colleague not an old college friend you used to beat at beer pong and not a job interview.
Facebook has become the causal say anything platform. If your feed is anything like mine it is covered with family pictures, zen quotes, strangely helpful tips, and strong political opinions.
Whereas this is always fun to read, I rarely take the time during my work day to scroll through it. I love taking a break at the end of the day on my couch and “facebooking.” It’s a chance for me to sit with my dogs and zone out. I get the feeling I’m not alone in this guilty pleasure. A lot of people that are playing on facebook do it at night or on the sly at work. This is by far the most casual of the platforms. For my couchsurfing time, I love comfy pj's and socks, not the suit I’ve been in all day.
Content of facebook has to be interesting, eye catching and relevant to your audience. This is obviously true for every platform but with so many different distracting things to read you really have to stand out.
Quick Sum Up
When creating content for LinkedIn, think about how you would talk to someone in a suit. When Tweeting think about someone in a business casual attire and how you would address a professional colleague. If you are creating content for Facebook, relax and be comfortable with your audience.
Most importantly for all platforms, know who you are try to reach and what you want them to do with your information. Always keep your focus and be honest, people can sense when you aren't genuine even in a tweet.
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