What do you think about Ghost twittering?

1502897669_60028cda99Ghost tweeting – where a communications or marketing person tweets on behalf of a CEO or celebrity – got an airing in the Herald on Sunday today.

I got quoted in the story. I’m not really sure the irony shows when I’m called a guru:

Social media guru Simon Young said ghost-Tweeting “might be needed as a transitional thing, but it’s ultimately not sustainable”.

Twitter should be a “conversation”, said Young, between real people.

Some more thoughts that didn’t make it into the final article:

  • Who says a CEO should tweet in the first place? Sure, they run the company, but is that relevant to the customer? Instead, empower some front line people within the company who can offer genuine value to customers – that might be customer service, it could be specials, it could be infotainment, or it could be genuine, stimulating conversation (as opposed to “conversation”!). It all depends on the business, the customers, and the value that’s exchanged.
  • Of course, that’s a little bit more complicated than just putting a virtual mic in front of the CEO, but that’s the nature of fundamental change. Isn’t it time to start figuring out what your company should look like in revolutionary times?
  • Here’s what it might look like: a team of people with different departments and disciplines, but one passion – the customer.
  • The skills they will need: a mix of talking (communications, marketing, IT) and listening (customer service, knowledge management) and, most importantly, the ability to learn and adapt quickly.
  • A great idea Laurel Papworth shared with me at Marketing Now: find the person in your contact centre who causes the most trouble because they’re too loud, or spend too much time in conversation with clients, and get them on social media. Being a bit of a show-off in a call centre can be a problem, but for social media it may be just right.

(Ghostly pic from peasap)

18 thoughts on “What do you think about Ghost twittering?

  • gpgrazioli

    Great stuff Simon. Ghost twittering as well Ghost blogging are not the way forward. It means company did not take social media seriously. It means the fundamental change… did not happen yet. We are all very busy.. it just means u twit less.
    If they ghost twit it means company does not care… I personally do not even believe delegation between the company and pa might work. Everybody should have their own account. If it is not you than it is a fake. CEO must have a twitter account no matter what company they work for.

    Reply
  • gpgrazioli

    Great stuff Simon. Ghost twittering as well Ghost blogging are not the way forward. It means company did not take social media seriously. It means the fundamental change… did not happen yet. We are all very busy.. it just means u twit less.
    If they ghost twit it means company does not care… I personally do not even believe delegation between the company and pa might work. Everybody should have their own account. If it is not you than it is a fake. CEO must have a twitter account no matter what company they work for.

    Reply
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  • movementmedia

    An important post and worthy discussion. Thanks Simon. I disagree with ghost twittering. If someone (be it an employee or a contracted consultant) is positioned to speak on behalf of a company, they should do it under name of the business as a representative, not under the name of the CEO or head of the company. This is the simplest solution as it maintains the integrity of the business and allows it to communicate its desired message by its elected representative. CEO's don't have to be the one tweeting, but for SME this can have desirable benefits (another conversation). In referencing the NZ Herald story here http://bit.ly/2JWHEQ, once the CEO has completed their 'training' they could transition in easily and join the conversation by introducing themselves to the business's existing followers and updating their profile bio with the relevant information.

    Starter for ten?

    Reply
  • movementmedia

    An important post and worthy discussion. Thanks Simon. I disagree with ghost twittering. If someone (be it an employee or a contracted consultant) is positioned to speak on behalf of a company, they should do it under name of the business as a representative, not under the name of the CEO or head of the company. This is the simplest solution as it maintains the integrity of the business and allows it to communicate its desired message by its elected representative. CEO's don't have to be the one tweeting, but for SME this can have desirable benefits (another conversation). In referencing the NZ Herald story here http://bit.ly/2JWHEQ, once the CEO has completed their 'training' they could transition in easily and join the conversation by introducing themselves to the business's existing followers and updating their profile bio with the relevant information.

    Starter for ten?

    Reply
  • Simon Young

    Thanks for your comment. I agree that a smaller business can definitely benefit from a publicity-friendly CEO who actually tweets on their own behalf – but a lot depends on the personality of the CEO.

    Reply
  • Simon Young

    Thanks for your comment. I agree that a smaller business can definitely benefit from a publicity-friendly CEO who actually tweets on their own behalf – but a lot depends on the personality of the CEO.

    Reply
  • movementmedia

    An important post and worthy discussion. Thanks Simon. I disagree with ghost twittering. If someone (be it an employee or a contracted consultant) is positioned to speak on behalf of a company, they should do it under name of the business as a representative, not under the name of the CEO or head of the company. This is the simplest solution as it maintains the integrity of the business and allows it to communicate the desired messages through the elected representative. CEO's don't have to be the one tweeting, but for SME this can have desirable benefits (another conversation). In referencing the NZ Herald story here http://bit.ly/2JWHEQ, once the CEO has completed their 'training' they could transition in easily and join the conversation by introducing themselves to the business's existing followers and updating their profile bio with the relevant information.

    Starter for ten?

    Reply
  • movementmedia

    An important post and worthy discussion. Thanks Simon. I disagree with ghost twittering. If someone (be it an employee or a contracted consultant) is positioned to speak on behalf of a company, they should do it under name of the business as a representative, not under the name of the CEO or head of the company. This is the simplest solution as it maintains the integrity of the business and allows it to communicate the desired messages through the elected representative. CEO's don't have to be the one tweeting, but for SME this can have desirable benefits (another conversation). In referencing the NZ Herald story here http://bit.ly/2JWHEQ, once the CEO has completed their 'training' they could transition in easily and join the conversation by introducing themselves to the business's existing followers and updating their profile bio with the relevant information.

    Starter for ten?

    Reply
  • movementmedia

    An important post and worthy discussion. Thanks Simon. I disagree with ghost twittering. If someone (be it an employee or a contracted consultant) is positioned to speak on behalf of a company, they should do it under name of the business as a representative, not under the name of the CEO or head of the company. This is the simplest solution as it maintains the integrity of the business and allows it to communicate the desired messages through the elected representative. CEO's don't have to be the one tweeting, but for SME this can have desirable benefits (another conversation). In referencing the NZ Herald story here http://bit.ly/2JWHEQ, once the CEO has completed their 'training' they could transition in easily and join the conversation by introducing themselves to the business's existing followers and updating their profile bio with the relevant information.

    Starter for ten?

    Reply
  • Simon Young

    Thanks for your comment. I agree that a smaller business can definitely benefit from a publicity-friendly CEO who actually tweets on their own behalf – but a lot depends on the personality of the CEO.

    Reply
  • Simon Young

    Thanks for your comment. I agree that a smaller business can definitely benefit from a publicity-friendly CEO who actually tweets on their own behalf – but a lot depends on the personality of the CEO.

    Reply
  • Simon Young

    Thanks for your comment. I agree that a smaller business can definitely benefit from a publicity-friendly CEO who actually tweets on their own behalf – but a lot depends on the personality of the CEO.

    Reply

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