Read this post at the New York Times ‘Fashion & Style’ section and I think it brings a nice and critical perspective to the way some people use Twitter. Or, in fact, many other social media.

It can sometimes be really difficult to get the grasp of a social media and it’s inherent etiquette, but like I mentioned yesterday, keeping it real with integrity is paramount. You will not get succes by spamming people with tweets, favorites, likes or whatever currency the given soclal media has.

Some quotes stood ou to me, and should be part of any basic introduction to social media:

“But a random appeal to Twitter royalty is only one of several gambits by which users of the site blur the lines between good and bad manners. Some Twitter users, on seeing that something they’ve tweeted minutes ago is gaining no traction, will wantonly fire off a spray of retweets or Favorites (similar to the Like option on Facebook) in a desperate attempt to prompt reciprocity.”

“But if there’s no algorithm for determining when self-promotion has crossed the line, are there any general principles to be considered? Two come to mind. First, self-promotion becomes unseemly when it is viewed as repetitive. Your followers probably are willing to tolerate two or three newspaper reviews of your new monograph about combat ethics of the Boer Wars, but not 17.”

“Second, readers are turned off when they’re made more aware of a tweet’s strategy than its content. We were so wowed by the fact that you’re sending the tweet to @madonna and @GwynethPaltrow and @RinglingBros that we lost the fact that you just secured your first booking as a yoga clown.”

“Ms. Li suggested a third metric: usefulness. “Your content has to be useful to people,” she said. “If it doesn’t have value to your followers, then it’s seen as spam or self-promotion.” Under this guideline, Rod Stewart’s tweet about having a child from each decade would seem to justify its swagger, because it’s information that his fans can share with others, or perhaps bait their grandparents with.”

In conclusion, my heuristics when it comes to using Twitter (and other social media):

  • Trust in the quality of your content
  • Don’t push yourself in front of peoples faces
  • If people did not react the first time, spamming will not help