I have had a Twitter account for more than a year and had yet to understand the potential. Actually, never mind potential, we can go farther than that and say that I never really understood the point. From what I understood of Twitter, I couldn’t understand why anyone want to share the boring details of every second of their lives. Who would read that? Still, having a Twitter account seemed relevant because everyone else had one. I figured that there had to be a better way of using it, maybe I just didn’t quite get it.
Well, I was right – I didn’t get it. That is, I didn’t get it until I attended our chapter’s social media workshop on January 24. Attendees were walked through the step-by-step process of how to effectively utilize their Twitter accounts. The workshop addressed everything from “what does RT mean?” to “should my Twitter take a more personal or professional approach?”
In addition to Twitter 101, the workshop covered LinkedIn, a popular professional networking site that made little sense to a newbie such as myself. Similar to Twitter, I had an account on LinkedIn for more than a year and still had not made it beyond 55% completion. In contrast to Twitter, LinkedIn likes to quantify just how effective a user’s profile is by showing users their percentage of profile completion.
Attendees of the PRRSA social media workshop were all given five minutes to draft their summary section and then share it with other members when they were finished. Constructive criticisms and prizes were given out, boosting confidence and helping guarantee that the write-ups were just right. With the help of the workshop, I have managed to make it up to an impressive 85%. In addition, I was finally able to tackle the “summary” section, which became manageable after reading examples and sharing my own writer up.
LinkedIn is a growing social media site for professionals, comparable to an online resume. Erica Rogers, PRSSA‘s vice-president of professional development, shared an article with members on how to effectively utilize their LinkedIn profile. Tips as simple as making sure that you have an appropriate profile picture to as complex as how to link your twitter updates to your LinkedIn profile were shared with attendees.
Social media’s role in the way we communicate has changed rapidly and continues to grow in importance. As future public relations practitioners, it is crucial for us to understand how to effectively implement social media to better serve ourselves and our clients. With the help of PRSSA’s social media workshop, I feel more confident about how I am perceived on the web.
Written by PRSSA Member Amanda Abukhader
Follow her on Twitter | @ahhmanda
Connect on LinkedIn | Amanda Abukhader
Join the Wayne State PRSSA group on LinkedIn!