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Keeping It Real

I think one of the most important things you should be doing on Twitter is being yourself.

This is true for all of social media. If you want to build your brand or establish yourself as an authority, it’s absolutely essential that you’re not only consistent in the way you behave and the things that you say, but that this consistency comes across to everybody else, too.

After all, it’s no good you thinking you’re ‘the same guy in real life’, but everyone who knows you thinks that’s a crock.

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Unfortunately, social media seems to encourage split personalities. There are so many people who are one way on Twitter, another on Facebook, yet another on LinkedIn, and something else entirely when you hook up for coffee.

(And don’t get me started on their anonymous accounts.)

To a certain extent, we’re all guilty of putting on our best version on the internet – and why not? Those who strive to put across the worst of themselves – otherwise known as trolls – are doing more than enough to drag the rest of us down. And it’s probable, and I dare say healthy, that the private version of you that is seen by family and close friends is a little different – a little more relaxed and a little less polished – than the professional.

But if the online you is too far away from the real you, then you’ve made a mistake. If you tout yourself as a social media guru, when in actuality you’re little more than an affiliate spammer, you’re going to get found out. If you’ve spent years carving out an affable public persona, but it all falls to pieces when the chips are down, others are going to notice.

And if you constantly jump onboard the latest trends, or the most happening indie bands, and act like you were a fan all along, or involved from the beginning, people will notice. And they’ll start to whisper about it.

And they’ll think you a fraud.

It’s absolutely okay to be super-confident online – there’s significant merit in ‘fake it ’til you make it’ – but always, always be sure you can back it up. There’s a ton of value in saying, “I made a mistake,” or, “I need some help here,” because those little cracks give us character. It’s the really big ones you need to avoid.

So here’s your wake-up call: nobody expects you to be perfect. So why try and act like you are?

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