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A Twitter fence sitter

Maybe it’s all in the tone of voice. When I see the question “What are you doing?” my first impulse is to say, “Oh, I am sorry.” It makes me question myself. “Why the hell are you doing that now?” But I have another question that follows: “Am I allowed to tell people what I am doing now?”


See, I landed in Twitter Land by accident, as I explained in my first post on Twitter a while back. Someone asked for my Twitter handle, so I signed up.
I wasn’t sure what I would tell people about. It’s one thing to talk about things I am doing in public. So, I can talk about what kind of blog post I am preparing. I can discuss presenting at a conference. But when I am spending my day in internal IBM meetings or I am helping another company with their problems, what can I say about that? Too often, it’s nothing.
I found myself using Twitter to lament about how my computer was acting up. I mean, do people really want to hear about that? I mean, I’ve grown used to the idea that I need to be careful about how I blog. Often the inspiration for my blog comes from an interaction I had with someone the day before. So I jot down things people ask me so I remember to answer those questions on my blog. But I haven’t yet reconciled using Twitter to tell people about my professional life without revealing confidences.
I think it is the relentless question, “What are you doing?” It reminds me of the Yogi Berra story where someone asked him what time it was and he responded, “You mean now?” Whenever I think of that Twitter question, I wonder, “You mean now?” Gee, I can’t tell you exactly what I am doing now. Or, this is just so sickeningly boring that no one ever would want to know. Yeah, I am going to Twitter about filling out my expense reports or handling my e-mail.
Some people have told me to use it as a really short blog. If I have something very brief that I thought of that I could put it on Twitter. Maybe I am just too long-winded for that to work.
Regardless, a few folks are following me. I wonder if that’s worth it for them. I haven’t decided whether I am going to keep doing it, but maybe it’s the kind of thing you need to keep at for it to work. Sometimes, however, you need to know when something isn’t right for you. I guess I am still on the fence.

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Mike Moran

Mike Moran is an expert in digital marketing, search technology, social media, text analytics, web personalization, and web metrics, who, as a Certified Speaking Professional, regularly makes speaking appearances. Mike’s previous appearances include keynote speaking appearances worldwide. Mike serves as a senior strategist for Converseon, an AI powered consumer intelligence technology and consulting firm. He is also a senior strategist for SoloSegment, a marketing automation software solutions and services firm. Mike also serves as a member of the Board of Directors of SEMPO. Mike spent 30 years at IBM, rising to Distinguished Engineer, an executive-level technical position. Mike held various roles in his IBM career, including eight years at IBM’s customer-facing website, ibm.com, most recently as the Manager of ibm.com Web Experience, where he led 65 information architects, web designers, webmasters, programmers, and technical architects around the world. Mike's newest book is Outside-In Marketing with world-renowned author James Mathewson. He is co-author of the best-selling Search Engine Marketing, Inc. (with fellow search marketing expert Bill Hunt), now in its Third Edition. Mike is also the author of the acclaimed internet marketing book, Do It Wrong Quickly: How the Web Changes the Old Marketing Rules, named one of best business books of 2007 by the Miami Herald. Mike founded and writes for Biznology® and writes regularly for other blogs. In addition to Mike’s broad technical background, he holds an Advanced Certificate in Market Management Practice from the Royal UK Charter Institute of Marketing and is a Visiting Lecturer at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. He also teaches at Rutgers Business School. He is a Senior Fellow at the Society for New Communications Research. Mike worked at ibm.com from 1998 through 2006, pioneering IBM’s successful search marketing program. IBM’s website of over two million pages was a classic “big company” website that has traditionally been difficult to optimize for search marketing. Mike, working with Bill Hunt, developed a strategy for search engine marketing that works for any business, large or small. Moran and Hunt spearheaded IBM’s content improvement that has resulted in dramatic gains in traffic from Google and other internet portals.

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