Twitter (and any other social network) is a form of public communication. Even individuals who are representing themselves are using it as a platform to reach a broader audience. Throw in a few hashtags and re-Tweets and suddenly you may be talking to millions of people.
At an organizational level, who should handle your Twitter feed? For many organizations, it falls to the communications/marketing folks (fine) and for some it is interns (not so fine). Some organizations have their top executive tweet (really good, I think).
And then there is Sweden, yes the country of Sweden (or rather its tourism board). You see, Sweden has embarked on an experiment to allow citizens to handle the @sweden Twitter feed. There are some rules on the ground–apparently, citizens should not discuss political views.
Someone forgot to tell the latest citizen to handle @sweden, a 27-year old “holy mother of two” Sonja Abrahamsson, that racism should also not be displayed. Sonja apparently is a huge fan of Adolf Hitler, and seems to be just a tad anti-Semitic. You can read all about it in this story on The Atlantic Wire and this story on AdWeek.
How is having Sonja do some stupid (racist) jokes helping to communicate anything positive about Sweden to any readers of the Twitter feed?
The person in charge of your Twitter feed is representing you (your organization, business or country) to the world. He or she is in effect, your public spokesperson. As such, this person should have the following characteristics:
- Be very knowledgeable about your organization (or country)
- Understand how Twitter works and that it can be quoted and used as a news source
- Be familiar with all key messages, press releases and other public information
- Be prepared to answer questions and comments professionally and not emotionally
- Be enthusiastic about your organization (or country)
- Keep personal opinions to him/herself
What do you think? Who handles your Twitter feed? Would you ever let someone like Sonja take over your feed? Thoughts and comments welcome!