Google+ The Marketing Survivalist: Is Twitter a Better Test Than Myers-Briggs?

Is Twitter a Better Test Than Myers-Briggs?

It occurred to me this morning that you can probably tell more about a person’s personality, approach to their profession and general outlook on life from looking at a picture of their tweets overtime than you can from the traditional standardized personality tests.

How many times do you get results back from one of these tests only to think “Are you sure this is me?” My very first Myers-Brigg’s test came back showing I was an introvert. I must have been having a bad day.

Here’s how to use Twitter to assess someone’s personality and approach to their profession:

If you click on an individual’s Twitter ID you can see a page full of their tweets. You can keep going back if you click the more button on the bottom. If the individual tweets several times a day, you may want to keep going back just so you don’t judge them based on their mood on one particular day.

Here are some of the conclusions that you might draw from a look at someone’s tweets. (By the way, these only apply to marketers. Those of you in other professions may draw your own conclusions.)

Not on Twitter – If they are in marketing and not on Twitter, I would be skeptical about any claims of social media expertise. At the very least, if they make that claim they better have a good reason for not having a Twitter account.

On Twitter, but no tweets – If they opened the account a long time ago is this a sign that they start projects but don’t finish them?

Doesn’t tweet very often – This could be a sign that they are new to Twitter but a laggard when it comes to adopting new ideas and technology. (Again, remember I am talking about marketers.) Or, it could be a sign that they are very busy and focused on their projects with no time to tweet. More investigation is called for.

Tweets all the time – I follow a couple individuals who tweet constantly. One is a personal branding specialist so I understand why he does it. The other individuals hold “real” jobs. I don’t know how they have enough time to Tweets 30-40 times a day and still get their work done. Enough said.

Tweets a lot, but usually all at the same time – This individual is a Twitter enthusiast (good) but still doesn’t get it. Tweeting ten times in a row at the end of every day is like doing a “drip” mailing and sending all mailers out the same week.

Tweets a lot of personal things – First, this individual still doesn’t understand the power of Twitter for personal branding or as a tool for marketing. Second, certain personal questions are illegal in interviews, but who needs to ask them when some people broadcast their life for the world to see. Be very careful with the personal tweets and think about what they say to those who may see the world differently than you.

Only tweets motivational quotes – These are the spice of life, but like vanilla, a little goes a long way. This individual is either convinced they are the world’s motivator or they are trying to motivate themselves. I like to think that the rest of the world isn’t wallowing in general apathy and ennui and that they don’t need the constant cheerleading. If they are trying to motivate themselves, and it works, then go for it. The rest of us will draw from your well when and if we need it.

Tweets their causes mixed with the professional – I think it’s great that people have things that they think are worth standing up for. However, if you are looking at someone who Tweets as much about their cause as they do about their profession, it’s probably reflective of their water cooler chatter too. Just be prepared is all I am saying.

Never tweets anything personal – This is the opposite of those who do too many personal tweets. The individual who never tweets anything personal, their own blog posts, simple comments, or direct replies, could be living their life vicariously through others. They need to get gain some self-confidence and let their voice be heard.

Topical blog tweets and retweets – Finally, you can tell a lot about the topics an individual is enthusiastic about by their tweets and retweets. If they tend to retweet blog posts about personal branding, social media, and content development then it’s a sure sign that those are three topics they follow and stay current on.

Just like with Myers Briggs, I think you should take my theories with a grain of salt. In fact, they’re probably wrong as often as they are right. But, maybe that’s the point. Perception is reality.

You should think about your tweeting style and consider what it says about you when someone clicks on your Twitter ID and “meets” you for the first time. Perhaps it never really matters what your personality is since others will always judge you by what they see.

OK, now you can tell me why my theories are all wrong.

All the best!

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