Hey, world. It’s been a while since I’ve written a blog. We have a baby on the way, so priorities have shifted a bit. The recent Twitter debacle brought me right back here. Wow. Also, let’s talk Mastodon, right?
I will not share my opinion on the ownership of a beloved social media network that has played such a critical part in my life. Still, I will share my thoughts on what you should think about as the drama plays out over the holidays and into the new year.
What is fair to say is that Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, bought the social media giant for 44 billion dollars as it continued to lose monthly active users in the millions. The social media site is swirling with rumors and glitches due to changes in content warnings, accepted content changes, and more. Many Twitter fans call for Jack Dorsey to return and save their Twitter accounts.
My history with Twitter has genuinely changed my life. My Twitter community has helped me survive so many moments, providing support, resources, and kind words at the drop of a pin. I also found out Osama Bin Laden was killed via Twitter right when the news broke.
One of my best roommates and I met on Twitter. I built a company with the community I met through Twitter. Now I will build through Mastodon.
Twitter has been kind to me. That’s not to say that I’ve escaped trolls, but it is to say that the good that has come from using Twitter as a tool to access communities far outweighs the trolls. The hours I poured into creating content, responding to every tweet, and connecting with my role models were some of the best I’ve spent. I say that in the past tense, but I am sure there are still some good moments to come.
Everyone needs to calm down and understand that Twitter is not the people on it; it’s simply a tool for building those real-time communities for finding those people. And, yes, I say that with a significant social media presence on the social networking site.
If you read any latest news, you’ll read that tech generally is in a bit of a mid-life crisis. I am an old bird, having started my career on the brink of social media becoming accessible to brands. I was lucky enough to see the organic side of social media and how beautiful it was to see meaningful, excellent content rise to the top. You could not just pay your way to get there.
Again, all social media is a tool; it’s not us…it’s not the people and brands that use it for their motives. No matter what type of social media you prefer, you use a tool for your personal/brand marketing. So the world is not ending with the end of Twitter — if that were to happen.
My guess? Twitter will be rebuilt by all techs who just left the company under a different name.
My next best guess? Networks like Mastadon will continue to pop up, allowing us to communicate with each other like in the OG social media days. I’m talking to brands and YOU, personally.
With that in mind, and Twitter in the balance, here is what I suggest you do:
Claim Your Name on Mastodon
Instead, one of the servers that connect to Mastadon, as Mastadon is currently full. Mastodon provides a complete list of servers in its network that you can use. To connect with the right audience, claim your name on the most relevant servers to you/your brand.
Notice I am only suggesting you claim your name at this point. Mastodon is a “dip your toes first” platform and can be complex if your background is not in coding since each server is built by a team of coders. Rather than posting right away, spend extra time eating up as much information as you can find on how to use the Mastodon servers.
Save High-Performing Twitter Content
You can probably put two and two together regarding what Twitter will look like with most of its tech support gone. Those on the extreme end of the spectrum speculate Twitter will completely shut down and become non-accessible to users.
If you do not have your Twitter content saved in a second place, head over to Twitter Analytics, search for your highest-performing content, and save it. You never know where this content can become fresh again. Hint: Mastodon?
I am taking it old school here because I have seen stable success with Reddit throughout my career. There are advantages to being an often-forgotten social network. Reddit is one of the few networks that has held on to its user-first approach, keeping content as authentic and accessible as possible.
Whether looking for yourself or a brand, you will find the community you are looking for within the depths of the Reddit-verse. You might need a consultant to get you started in the right place.
Send Daily CTAs
Not a surprising suggestion, based on the tip above. If Twitter does shut down without notice, you will want your followers to know where to find you. With one tweet lasting two and a half minutes, I recommend sharing your IG, Reddit, Facebook, or email (whatever contact information is best for your followers to find you at) at least once a day.
Slow Down Twitter Content Production
Don’t write Twitter off until it’s off. There are many balls up in the air, and the truth is, not even the most experienced expert knows exactly where those are going to fall right now. Keep your Twitter content in production, but slow it down until there is a clear path for the network.
Focus more energy on content production for sites such as Reddit and Mastodon. The caveat here, depending on which Mastodon server you join, you might not be at the right point to start saying something. I recommend playing around with the server for a bit and deciding if it’s worth your immediate effort.
Some brands and people alike never got Twitter, and that’s okay. There are definitely clients throughout my career whom I did not recommend Twitter to because their target audience wasn’t there. All of you can just sit back and watch the sh*tshow unfold.
For those of us who watched the narrative of our lives change thanks to the power this tool provided us with, there is a bit of heartache as we watch the turbulent news. Remember, we are a community regardless of the tool we use, and there are tools on the horizon that will allow us to connect in the same targeted ways.
Until we all have more information, follow the five steps above to keep yourself and your brand from going crazy.
– Marji J. Sherman