RAQ: How can I update both Twitter and Facebook?

Here’s a question from yesterday (I’m paraphrasing):

I don’t do a very good job of keeping either Twitter or my Facebook status updated. Is there a way I can do both at the same time, or use Twitter to update Facebook?


Twitter 110, which was developed more than a year ago, lists some options for this. One limitation though, and the reason I quit having Twitter automatically update my Facebook status, is that I tend to tweet a lot and often have replies, for example, that would not make sense to Facebook users who haven’t been part of the conversation. So my kids used to tell me, “Dad, your Facebook status is always really boring.” Or weird.

If you spend more time in Facebook, you can use the Twitter application within Facebook to send your tweets.

But here’s the way I currently prefer to work, using Tweetdeck. In Tweetdeck I can incorporate both of the Twitter accounts with which I work (@LeeAase and @mayoclinic) as well as my Facebook profile. That way I don’t have to be in Facebook or on the Twitter Web interface, but can update both simultaneously.

So I can select just to have updates sent to my personal Twitter account:

Picture 1

…or I can select to go both to Twitter and Facebook:

Picture 2

If I choose the latter, the Tweetdeck dashboard shows this:

Picture 5

And here’s what shows up on Facebook:

Picture 7

and on Twitter:

Picture 6

The nice part about having an application like Tweetdeck is that you can decide which messages are appropriate for which platform. And of course, as I say in Twitter 106 and in Twitter 152: Tweetcamp III, Tweetdeck or an application like it greatly increases your Twitter productivity.

I still don’t update my Facebook status as frequently as I should, but Tweetdeck makes it easier to keep the status updated without having to go to the Facebook Web interface.

How do you keep Twitter and Facebook statuses updated? Or do you even try to do both?

Announcing the Chancellor’s Choice Awards

One of my basic approaches to social media is to maximize what can be done for free. I do this partly to prove a point; to eliminate excuses by showing how much you can do without spending a penny (and without requiring the support of IT).

And of course the other reason is: I’m cheap.

Having seen a recent article by Walter Mossberg of the Wall Street Journal with a list of his favorite iPhone apps, and having just spent money on an iPhone application for the first time last weekend, I thought it would be good to create the Chancellor’s Choice Awards.

Chancellor’s Choice recipients are social media tools that have caused me to pry out the wallet and flip over the debit card to get the security code…to actually spend money on social media. These aren’t annual awards; I’ll present them whenever I buy something in social media and find it worth the cost. And they’re not subject to vote: they’re just my personal opinion (not that of my employer or the SMUG student body.) I welcome your nominations or contrary opinions, however. Leave them in the comments.

The Chancellor’s Choice award also carries no cash value, and there’s no lovely statuette or red carpet media gathering. If the recipients would care to offer tear-filled speeches in response, they can send me a link to their uploaded video, and I’ll update the award post to embed it.

The first Chancellor’s Choice award will be presented tonight. If you have non-free social media tool nominees to suggest, share them in the comments below.

Twitter 104: Four Steps to Building Your Twitter Network

This is the equivalent of a “lab exercise” to accompany Twitter 103. See that course for the the theory. Twitter 104 gives you the step-by-step roadmap to building your own personalized network in Twitter.

Please note that you probably want to follow no more than 10 new people at a time on Twitter; because of the spammer phenomenon, following tons of new people at once raises alerts that can cause temporary account suspension (at least I’ve heard that’s the case.) I’ve put a tweet out about this and will try to confirm when I get an answer, and will update the post accordingly. So you may need to complete this course over several days (especially Step Three) to avoid this problem.

Let’s get started!

Step One: Invite Friends & Family to Twitter

In a variation on the the old saying, “The family that prays together stays together,” I says “The family that regularly Tweets doesn’t miss a beat.” Click this link and then enter the email addresses of your spouse, offspring, siblings, parents and closest friends. Follow them and ask them to do likewise. Unlike the cell phone providers with their “circles” and “fave fives” you don’t have a limit on the number with whom you can connect through Twitter.

Then, hypothetically speaking, when your daughter drives 250 miles to meet the family of the young man with whom she has become involved, she can just send a quick tweet to let everyone know she made it safely. Not that we’ve had an issues with kids causing us to stay up worrying or anything. 😉

Step Two: Invite 10 Work Colleagues

In like manner, pick 10 people with whom you work regularly and invite them to join so you can follow each other. Then, as you run across interesting articles on the Web, for instance, you can tweet about them instead of sending the group email that typically snowballs into the “reply all” blizzard that overtakes your inbox. (Not the greatest use of metaphors, but it’s early a.m. as I write this.) If you want to have more company-confidential conversation, Yammer is a Twitter-like service for which I have developed a separate curriculum.

If either your family or work colleagues want more information on Twitter and why it’s worthwhile, send them to Twitter 101 for an overview.

Step Three: Follow Your Fellow SMUGgles

Students (and faculty for that matter) at Social Media University, Global are known as SMUGgles. (Here’s an explanation of the term.) You can go here to see a list of your fellow SMUGgles on Twitter. (or at least the ones who have chosen to follow the @SMUG_U feed.) As of this morning, you’ll see something like this:


Just click the “Follow” button next to each name (as illustrated in Twitter 103), and you’ll start to develop a network of like-minded people interested in learning more about social media, and who are tweeting about our discoveries. As of this writing, we have 238 members in our SMUG Facebook group, so I’m hoping our Twitter network will grow rapidly. And because of the velocity of interchanges with Twitter, I’m confident this group of SMUGgles following each other will provide a great platform for connecting and learning together.

Step Four: Join Interesting Conversations

Make sure your notifications are set so that you see all @ replies from those you’re following in your Twitter stream. Your settings should look like this:


This ensures that you “see all of the @replies made by people you follow, whether or not you follow the person to whom the reply is directed.” This is a great way to see one side of conversations that you might find interesting, and that you may wish to join. Just as importantly, you’ll see the people with whom your friends are engaged (see the @JasonFalls example from Twitter 103) and you may likewise want to follow them.

In reply to my tweet about the number of follows per day that sets off spam alarms, @mflinsch suggested mrtweet.net as a good resource for building your network. So I’ve followed @mrtweet, and will update this post if it becomes Step Five.

Yammer 109: Yammering Your Personal Journal

For the last several years I have kept my personal journal in a series of month-based Microsoft Word documents, with a naming convention of 08January.doc, 08 February.doc, etc.

I don’t always do the greatest job of keeping it updated, and of course it’s not searchable. If I want to remember when something happened that I had written about, I have little choice but to open each of the documents and search. And keeping it all in one document was unworkable; I had started with just one file, but found it necessary to later move to the monthly files.

With Yammer’s new Groups feature, I think I have a better solution. I’ve formed a group called Lee Aase’s Journal that is private and not listed in the company directory, and I’m not inviting anyone else to join (and therefore no one can request to join, either.) No one would know the group even existed if I hadn’t written this blog post.


So in essence I have a time-stamped private journal that I can add to quickly and easily. Unlike Twitter, I’m not limited to 140 characters. And if I want to find a particular reflection, I can just search Yammer.

Here’s my first post:


I’ve done some subsequent posts with my current weight, the time it took to run those two miles, and other tidbits of a more personal nature. I’m pretty transparent, but hey, there are limits to personal disclosure!

I’m just starting this “Yammering My Personal Journal” journey, but I think it’s going to be a great way to make journaling part of my daily activity. And not only journaling to get the thoughts out, but to time stamp them and make them easier to retrieve.

I’ve set my journal (and other Yammer groups) as one of my bookmarks in Safari, and I believe that will help me keep journaling front-and-center as a daily (if not more) activity.


I’ll keep you posted as I develop more experience with Yammering to myself.

What do you think of this idea?

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