SmartPulse — our weekly nonscientific reader poll in SmartBrief on Social Media — tracks feedback from leading marketers about social media practices and issues. Last week’s poll question: How do you keep your social media presence professional?

  • I keep separate accounts for personal and professional networking: 68.46%
  • I use filters, such as Circles on Google+, to make sure posts are seen by the right people: 9.13%
  • I do not use social networks for professional purposes — only personal matters: 8.71%
  • I only post things that are related to my job, no matter what network I’m on: 8.30%
  • I don’t use social networks at all: 5.39%

Last week, I interviewed Donna Farrugia, the executive director of The Creative Group, about how social media can be used to make connections in your career. She cautioned that “it’s important to always be careful about what you post and with whom you’re sharing the information,” which is something that many of our readers seem to be aware of. (read more…)

You’re convinced there’s a case for using a particular social tool as part of your job. But you look around you and it seems like you’re the only one. Your boss thinks it’s too risky. The department head thinks its a fad. Your contemporaries are all stressed out enough as it is without adopting some new tools. How will you ever build organizational support for this?

The answer lies in being able to look outside your own little work group and find allies in unusual places. The good news is, you’re far from the first person to have to do this. There are well-worn paths for building a coalition of support for social tools within an organization.

Here are the six people who are most likely to help you get a social media effort off the ground: (read more…)

Social networks have always had an uneasy relationship with customization. The earliest social networks gave you few customization options, if any. Then Myspace taught us all that unlimited profile customization can be a scary, animated-GIF-filled nightmare. Facebook gives you the options it wants you to have. And Twitter’s first-party user experience has been thoroughly surpassed by third-party clients in a dizzying array of flavors.

So what about Google+? The newest entry to the social network major leagues is taking a page from Twitter’s handbook, letting third-party application developers do all of the heavy lifting. But instead of letting these new feature coalesce into full-blown clients that render the first-party experience obsolete, these improvements are being channeled into extensions for Google’s Chrome browser.

The result (ideally) is a robust, evolving feature set that’s easy to customize, doesn’t overwhelm the user and doesn’t make the core experience completely irrelevant.

The downside to this approach is that Google hasn’t done a great job of letting users know they can improve their experience with plug-ins — and it hasn’t made it easy to identify the most useful tools on the market. (read more…)

How to simplify your LinkedIn URL; why brands should focus on local marketing campaigns on Facebook; and how to use Twitter’s new photo gallery.

It’s all in this week’s top five most-clicked links in SmartBrief on Social Media:

Image credit: narvikk, via iStockphoto (read more…)

The bill passed. The storm hit. The war is over — and you weren’t paying attention. Current events are the lifeblood of many conversations on social networks. But if you find out about a major event a day or more after it happened, it can be tempting to just let the issue slide. No one wants to be seen as out-of-touch, right? But even if you can’t break news or be the first person to react, you can still weigh in on the subject in a way that is thoughtful and relevant to your readers. It just takes a little bit of extra work to make up for lost time.

Of course, none of the options I’m about to give you are a complete replacement for being on top of the news and ready to respond when a major event hits your industry. But getting into the game a little late is better than standing on the sidelines forever. (read more…)