Helping people with computers... one answer at a time.

I use Twitter, Facebook, Flickr and LinkedIn - and I actually have a little bit of a plan around how I use each.

A couple of weeks ago, I surprised someone by commenting that I was working on my "social media strategy". The reaction was along the lines of "who knew you'd need ... or even want ... a strategy".

As an online business person, I think it's important to not only be aware of, and participate in various social media venues, but to actually have a little bit of a plan.

Since that affects where and how I might show up, and if and when I might respond to you, I figured it's only prudent to lay out my current thinking.

In order of how "accessible" I am:

Twitter - I have two accounts on Twitter: @askleo and @leonot.

Anyone can follow me on twitter. In fact, you're more than welcome to.

When new articles are published on Ask Leo!, they're automatically "tweeted" to @askleo as well, so it's a convenient way to stay on top of what's new here.

I also post to @askleo things I find that I think are of interest or relevant to you. Typically, that's a "re-tweet" of something I've stumbled across on Twitter itself, but it also includes links to articles and information that I find elsewhere as well.

"Anyone can follow me on twitter. In fact, you're more than welcome to."

While @askleo is my business / tech twitter account, @leonot is my personal one. While I rarely "tweat" (tweet what I eat), and never post about getting out of bed, having a headache, or any of the other trivialities that most people associate with Twitter users, @leonot gets some of the more random things that I just can't keep to myself. I occasionally post slightly personal comments, and my Flickr photostream is also automatically linked to the @leonot twitter account, so when I post a new photo it shows up there.

I do not auto-follow. Unlike some, I actually try to read the tweets of the people I follow, so I only follow those folks that I would find interesting or would want to read. To those of you who feel that it's rude not to follow everyone who follows you: sorry, but I disagree. Doing that would quickly make Twitter pretty useless to me.

I can't always keep up with the full twitter stream, but I do see and read every direct message.

Flickr - leonot

I share photos on These are typically not business or Ask Leo! related, but if you care to see photos from my most recent trips, my dogs, or whatever else happened to be in front of my camera, this is the place to look.

For the record, while I'm careful to retain copyright and brand most every photo - if there's a shot there you'd like to use just ask. I'll likely say yes, for the price of a mention.

Facebook (Ask Leo!) -

Ask Leo! has a fan page on Facebook, and I encourage those of you on Facebook to become a fan or "Like" the page, as the newer terminology has it.

On the Ask Leo! Facebook page you'll find new article notifications, the @askleo Twitter feed (on what's apparently a pretty random delay), comments from other Facebook users, and a discussion group where I often ask you for advice and opinions.

Facebook (me) -

I also have a personal Facebook page, and a bunch of information from my public profile is there for all to see.

I've elected to keep Facebook for my personal use, thus I don't accept all Facebook friend requests. Please don't be insulted, but in order to keep Facebook useful to me, I only accept friend request from people that I actually know or have some kind of business or other relationship with.

My apologies to my fans who would like to connect. Fortunately, that's exactly why the Ask Leo! page exists, so you can hook up with me there instead.

LinkedIn -

I do maintain a personal profile on LinkedIn, however, once again, I only accept link requests from people that I actually know or have some kind of connection with. In fact, "the bar" is probably a tad higher on LinkedIn.


I may have test accounts elsewhere, but pay them no mind until they're listed here.

And for the record, I abandoned my MySpace account long ago.

Of course right now the social media landscape seems like it's in constant flux. What's popular today may well fall by the wayside in a year or two. That's the nature of the internet.

But I'll try to keep this strategy somewhat up to date, if and when my own usage changes.

Article C3693 - April 8, 2009 « »

Leo Leo A. Notenboom has been playing with computers since he was required to take a programming class in 1976. An 18 year career as a programmer at Microsoft soon followed. After "retiring" in 2001, Leo started Ask Leo! in 2003 as a place for answers to common computer and technical questions. More about Leo.

Not what you needed?

Gord Campbell
April 14, 2009 9:50 AM

You've described your tactics, not your strategy.

LOL - fair enough.
- Leo

Linn Barringer
April 15, 2009 2:45 AM

As usual, common sense prevails from Leo. Your tactics (me being a pedant, I agree with Gord Campbell!) for using social media are good. A strategy might be "I'll only use SM where I can add value, and I'll only have a dialogue where I can glean value."
Which, I think, seems to match how you've tactically implemented your strategy. :o)

Joseph Parenteau
April 20, 2009 7:49 PM

What strikes me, Leo, is you really can write.
Admit it. You started out as an English major, right? One way or the other, you are one impressive polymath.

Thanks, but nope, I'm a geek - Electrical Engineering degree. I'm as surprised as you are about this whole writing thing. :-)
- Leo

May 25, 2010 9:03 AM

My strategy/tactics almost mirror yours. Limited on Twitter and Linkedin. i really don't even like fb, but i follow the whole batch with tweetdeck. That way all the comments show up on one page.

I started a test account on 4square. It is not an application that would really work for me, but I wanted to be aware of it. It's okay.

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