So far, Twitter/X has been my primary social media site, but a year ago, I wondered if and how I should continue using it in light of changes made by its new owner, Elon Musk. I decided to take my time with things and observe the changes, considering that I was at a time when I didn’t focus on marketing and outreach for work. For 2024, however, I want to connect to more people to find additional professional opportunities to build my brand and expand my freelance business.
It seems like the worst predictions for Twitter/X were false. The site didn’t crash or collapse. Communities didn’t emigrate en masse, although some have said goodbye and moved to other platforms. The vibe may have shifted, but the service still has cozy corners. I don’t want to leave with a bang, but I also don’t feel confident about investing more into X, mainly because I’m curious about other alternatives. Hence, I’ve decided to use X only to interact with people from communities heavily relying on it, like Interintellect. I will still share important announcements and the occasional general-interest tweet, but I won’t try building and growing an audience. Which platforms will I use instead?
One platform I want to give additional attention to is LinkedIn. It’s not the most exciting platform, but it’s where everyone seems to be. If I want to build my business, I should invest more. I plan to share three weekly posts to discuss my work and the industry and regularly interact with posts from my connections to remain visible.
I will also build a new website and landing page with an email list as a sales funnel for consulting services. I’ve yet to finalize the details, but I’m working with a friend to build it. There will be some overlap and strategic connection between LinkedIn, this landing page, and my emails.
I will invest more in the fediverse and post regularly on my Mastodon account. Software engineers and people from the broader community, like technical writers, API designers, and DevRel folks, were among the first to look at alternatives to X. I want to engage them and share my work there. Compared to LinkedIn, though, it will be the slightly nerdier, techier, more raw version of my brand.
This blog will remain a behind-the-scenes channel for both work and personal stuff. It’s public and connected to my name, but I’m not aggressively marketing it. It’s for those who want to go deeper. The post you’re reading now is an excellent example of the type of content you can expect here. I’m using Bluesky for more random “tweets” (are they called “skeets” now?) that I want to get out of my head.
I’ve recently deleted all posts from my Instagram because I couldn’t keep up posting strategically and didn’t want to create feed posts randomly. Hence, I’ve decided to use Instagram only for ephemeral stories which cover multiple aspects of my life. I recently uninstalled the original inventor of short stories, Snapchat, from my phone and deleted my account because I don’t have enough contacts there to make sharing stories worthwhile.
The only interesting aspect of Threads, Instagram’s text-based spin-off, is the eventual fediverse support through ActivityPub integration. I will play with it once it’s out, but I’m not expecting Threads to play an active role for me. I also want to experiment with other fediverse platforms, like Pixelfed and Bookwyrm, but I still need to figure out how. Flipboard’s announced ActivityPub support has also caught my attention.
I’m not posting regularly on Facebook, but I still keep it as a “book of faces” of people I’ve met because I think it still serves this purpose well.
I’ve grown fond of a small German neighborhood network called nebenan.de for local connections. I like small alternatives to big players, even if they’re not part of the fediverse, so I’ll do my part to keep this network active and connect with people in my area.
VERO is another network with a short hype a few years ago that is still on my phone. I’m not actively posting there anymore, but I like many aspects of the app and think about using it more. Or should I drop it, as I have too many networks already?! Another app I’m unsure about is BeReal. It’s an excellent, non-distracting way to keep up with friends, but I only have a few contacts who actively use it.
Very soon, I’ll delete my XING account. The network used to be the European LinkedIn, but the geographical split doesn’t make sense in an age of global business. The company has recently made changes that make it feel more like a traditional job portal and, hence, not applicable for a freelance entrepreneur like myself unless I wanted to recruit full-time employees. My relevant XING connections are on LinkedIn, too.
How is your social media strategy for 2024?