I read a post today by Mark Schaefer about “How many Twitter accounts should you have?”
A good question–and a controversial one.
Schaefer concludes, “In most cases, you don’t need two Twitter accounts. Just be congruent and honest. Be you.” I agree. I think that one Twitter account is a good rule of thumb–and is probably all any casual or moderate user needs.
But I think there are good arguments for two accounts for heavy or “power” users especially if they have more than one strong focus. In my case for example, I have one for my communications business and one for my interest in social/justice and community building. While there is some overlap of audience, there’s enough of a difference and I tweet heavily enough on both topics that its better to talk to each audience separately. It also gives my business a presence that wouldn’t be possible with a single account unless I reduced tweeting my interest in issues important to who I am.
The key is to use the two accounts in a genuine, authentic way. I don’t try to be two different people. I don’t say something in one account I wouldn’t or couldn’t say in the other. I openly let folks know that both accounts are me (no hiding behind a logo for example). For some, they might be able to say something they couldn’t on the other account so long as it is consistent with being the same person. Your avid interest in hockey might not be appropriate on an account with a focus on legal issues for example. A certain level of Twitter experience is needed to successfully pull off more than one account.
In general, I’d recommend that everyone start with a single account and use it to learn the power of Twitter. Later, if you get hooked on Twitter you may want to consider a second account. Just remember, it’s better to have a strong presence on one account than a weak presence in two or more accounts.
Thanks to Josh Muirhead who brought this post to my attention via Twitter.
What do you think? Is one Twitter account enough for you?