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Correction To My Twitter Webinar

My webinar, Twitter For Advisors, on Friday, May 8, contained an error.

In the presentation, I incorrectly said that if you keep your tweets private and approve all of your followers on Twitter, other Twitter users could not see your followers. That's incorrect.

While approving your followers allows only approved followers to see your updates, any other Twitter user can still see your followers.

It’s important for financial advisors to keep this in mind. I incorrectly advised in the presentation that, if you create a separate profile for clients only, other Twitter users could not see them. Even if you protect your updates using the checkbox in the “Settings” menu in Twitter, any other Twitter user can still see your profile and the list of your followers.

Twitter’s terse "Help" on its "Settings" page is unclear, and it was only after testing the "protect updates" feature that I discovered this serious flaw in using Twitter to communicate with your clients. Keep in mind, this is very different from the way LinkedIn works. LinkedIn lets you make connections private so that no one outside of your network can see people in your network.

And keep this issue in perspective: Finding prospects on Twitter and marketing to them remains an intriguing new way to generate new business and network with other professonals. The presentation is still valuable to advisors and this was only one of the many points discussed in the one-hour session, which was focused on Twitter basics along with finding and marketing to prospects on Twitter.

However, I'd now recommend against tweeting clients because competitors could visit your profile, see your followers, and request following them. Since many, if not most, Twitter users automatically follow back anyone who follows them, your clients could wind up following your competitors.

I contacted Twitter’s development team to let them know that financial advisors and other business owners are unlikely to use Twitter for communicating with clients unless this feature is cleaned up, and I’ll let you know about any response. It’s hard to imagine that Twitter will not correct this flaw.

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