As most people reading this blog know, I’m very active on Twitter (1000+ followers), Facebook (770+ “friends”) and LinkedIn (1300+ direct connections). I’m often asked how (and why) I use these three networks and wanted to share with my readers the usual answer I provide.
First, LinkedIn. According to their Web site, “LinkedIn is an interconnected network of experienced professionals from around the world, representing 170 industries and 200 countries. You can find, be introduced to, and collaborate with qualified professionals that you need to work with to accomplish your goals.” Launched in 2003, the site now has over 41 million members worldwide. LinkedIn has pretty much replaced my address book to find the most up to date contact information of my connections. It’s also how I find out when people change jobs or get promoted. It’s also extremely useful for business development opportunities. My 1300+ direct contacts give me access to more than 8.7M people in the site (that’s 22% of all LinkedIn members!). Suffice to say, I have easy access to almost everyone I need to talk to in the online media industry. I go to the site twice a day on average. I usually try to connect in LinkedIn with everyone I’ve met in person. I also accept connections from people that I’ve never met but have an interesting profile (high-profile individuals at known companies) or are connectors (headhunters, for example). If you fit those definitions, don’t hesitate to request a connection with me.
Second, Facebook. As most everyone know, Facebook is one of the leading social networking sites on the Web. According to their site, Facebook’s mission is “is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected.” Founded in 2004, the site now has more than 200 million active users and more than 100 million users log on to Facebook at least once each day. When I first joined the site, I started using Facebook pretty much like Linkedin, but even more openly. I started accepting invitations from almost everyone, especially if we had friends in common. Today, I’ve changed the way I use the site to make it more personal. I now connect in Facebook with friends, parents and close business contacts (usually means I’ve worked with you, I’ve met you many times at a business event and/or we’ve shared a great business meal/drink!). I use Facebook to post status updates (most of them originally posted in Twitter and mirrored in Facebook), interesting links, pictures I’ve taken (I don’t have a Flickr account) and I keep track of industry events I’m attending there. I find Facebook is a more interesting place to have “conversations” on people’s status updates because of the threaded nature of comments. It’s more personal. Facebook is one of the browser tabs I always keep open. In case, we know each other very well and you’ve slipped through the cracks and want to connect, I’m here.
Finally, Twitter. Twitter is a 140-character micro-blogging service. Started in 2006, Twitter is now used by 32M unique visitors worldwide (April 2009 ComScore data mentioned in Techcrunch). With its asynchronous connections (you don’t need to reciprocate a person following you), it serves as the perfect place for people I don’t know to connect with me. But I don’t follow everyone that follows me. I’m interested in individuals with strong opinions about almost anything and I’m not a fan of mundane things if I don’t know you well. I follow currently a little over 400 people while 1000 people follow me back. I use Twitter as a RSS reader, following my favorite bloggers, industry pundits and media sources in the Twitter feed. I also broadcast my new blog posts and interesting links related to the local/social media industries. I will also “tweet” personal stuff, often related to Montreal activities or interesting things I’ve seen (movies) or heard (music). It’s also a nice way to communicate directly with people through direct messages (in general, for my group, Twitter has replaced Facebook as the favorite way to send private messages). Twitter is another one of my open browser tabs. If you want to follow me, I’m at @sebprovencher