by: Katie Hellmuth Martin
During a Live Webinar TuneUp that focused on How To Be A Twitter Ninja, a question came in from a business owner who sells swim cover-ups world-wide, and has been featured in Oprah Magazine, Good Morning America and the Today Show. She asked: "My Twitter handle is my business name, but the actual name in my Twitter profile is my own personal name. Is this a good idea?"
My recommendation was that having her first and last name instead of the business name in the Twitter name field was not the best representation of the business Twitter account because people know that they are interacting with the business. If she has interns or marketing assistants running the Twitter account, then having her name there is not always an accurate representation. But does this way of thinking apply to Periscope, which is a visual platform that stars a person in each broadcast? I am going to explore this in pictures below.
Quite fittingly, the next day I was listening to a live Periscope broadcast from Julianna Puccini, who was scoping about how to write a great bio for Periscope, and she made a observant point about including the name of the business owner in the Periscope account: "People want to know who they are talking to," she told her viewers. "When they are talking to you or typing a comment, it's nice to know your name."
And therein lies a big difference between how to craft an effective bio for Twitter and for Periscope, and why the bio on each platform needs your attention for a unique bio. The Periscope account of a business may be starring the same person most of the time. Look at these examples:
- If your business is a blog, and you are hosting the scopes most of the time, then including your full name in your bio makes your scopes more personable because people can identify with you by name.
- If the business Periscope is hosted by your marketing team who does not not include you the business owner in the scopes, then including the name of the business owner won't be an effective strategy in this case because the business owner is never in the shot.
Looking At Full Name Fields In Twitter
Let's get oriented with where the swim cover-up business owner is talking about: the Twitter profile has a Name field, as pictured below. For the case of Tin Shingle's Twitter account, we made the decision to use the business name in our full name field. This is because we produce all kinds of tweets, from sharing helpful links to recommending PR Leads for different members to follow up on in their PR Centers. We also have different people tweeting at different times for different reasons. So our full name is Tin Shingle.
Looking At Name Fields In Periscope
The name field gets trickier in Periscope for a business. I am going to use my local business blog as an example, A Little Beacon Blog. Some bloggers are known by their first names, but not all. I am one such person where the blog is a lifestyle blog of a town, not of my life. So not everyone knows that I run the blog, and they don't all know my name.
Search Is Very Important When Setting The "Full Name" Field In Periscope
Keep in mind, if your business Periscope handle is your blog's name, and you use your own personal name in the Full Name field, then when people are searching for who to follow and they are reading down the list, they will see your personal name first, before they see your business name. If people know your blog by name, but don't know your name, then they may skip right over your account! So this is where you will need to get creative with how you use the name field in Periscope. Take a look at the evolution of the full name field for my blog's name:
First Time Around
I started a Periscope account for the blog, connected it to its Twitter account, and never looked back. The first name field was populated by the name field from the Twitter account, which was "alittlebeacon", which is the same as the handle name. The handle name had to be abbreviated due to Twitter's character restrictions. (Note to self - why did I have the shortened handle be the full name!? Good thing we are looking at this! The name should be "A Little Beacon Blog")
A Business Blog With a First Name In The Field Rather Than The Business Name
This screenshot is of a search for "BeaconNY". People use this when looking for accounts in their local area, so it's an important term to include in this bio. Do you see how the blog is ranking in the search? You may not have noticed it, because I set my name there for this example, which not everyone is familiar with. The logo is there, but people generally read the names first. Plus, the Periscope handle is not even there! Maybe Periscope will change this in the future, but as of 9/26/2015, the handle name does not show in a search on an iPhone 6.
Full Name Field Switched To Be The Business Blog's Name
Ahh, that's better. People can see the blog's name right away. But to Julianna Puccini's point, the viewers probably want to know who is broadcasting, and in this case, it is mainly me - Katie. So I included my first name in the bio description.
The answers explored in this article are solutions that work for these business situations. Yours may be different! Any questions? Ask me in the comments below.
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