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  Corporate Class News May 2009  
In This Issue
Interview with Diane - B Magazine
Blog Launch
This Month's Survey
Sandrine's Gift of Life
Connect with Us
Quick Links
Tweetiquette - a roundup of ideas, attitudes and
opinions, plus, our Top Ten Tweeting Tips

Twitter - sophisticated branding tool or simple, social-networking toy?

Ask President Obama, CNN, Martha Stewart or Ashton Kutcher and you'll hear a resounding "Yes" on the branding tool front.  But ask a group of savvy twenty-somethings and be prepared for a gruff reply along the lines of: "It's just a toy." Surprisingly, the 'text-generation' often tends to be dismissive of Twitter's usefulness for anything more than staying in touch with one's inner circle.

Certainly two of the biggest factors driving Twitter's success are the fact that it's free and easily accessible. Just by joining, you create your own micro-blog, instantly. You also gain immediate access to fellow-members' postings - in Twitter parlance, you select the people or even the publications, you want to "follow." Choose your friends, colleagues, Vanity Fair, even Oprah!

Is Twitter the ultimate networking service? Let's just say that the jury's still out. Meanwhile, Twitter traffic is increasing. About three weeks ago, when Oprah posted her first "tweet", Twitter reported an immediate increase of 40% more traffic. Obviously, to keep things moving we need some guidelines - not roadblocks and motorcycle cops - just some sensible ideas to maintain and build the flow.

So, in the interest of Twitterers everywhere, we conducted a survey to measure what constitutes major infractions and what are simple, minor offences, barely worthy of a traffic ticket. Not surprisingly, just like highway drivers, Twitterers have no patience with "road hogs" - but we're getting ahead of ourselves. Read the entire survey here Tweetiquette Survey.

First things first - tweetiquette is evolving. Today, there are clearly defined boundaries for cell phone usage that simply didn't exist twenty years ago. Conversely, the code of behaviour called table manners has relaxed considerably since Victorian times. The ebb and flow of etiquette is constantly changing as people interact with one another.

Try Googling 'Twitter etiquette' and you'll be inundated with material. Then why, you're asking, do we need more rules? Our goal was to talk to the people - enthusiastic, mainstream Twitterers - to uncover what's really going on. And yes, there were some naysayers, folks who think Twitter will, or should police itself. Overall, there were so many ideas and suggestions that all indications are that it's time to update the existing, unofficial guidelines and provide some simple-to-follow dos and don'ts - the basis of our Top Ten Tweeting Tips.  

One of the biggest bones of contention, according to our survey, is typos. Critics say the 140 character format is so small and manageable, there's no excuse for sloppy spelling or grammatical errors. Others contend that messages are often sent from mobile phones - the keys are tiny, the text is small, and the sender is often multi-tasking. This group maintains that it's the content that counts.  For anyone struggling, there's help at hand from Grammer Girl's Twitter Style Guide,  Ultimately, we believe, personal style will prevail - those who can, will spell correctly and those who can't, won't. While we're on the subject of style, it's smart to think about the image your online picture projects. For tips on putting your best face forward see, Put the Best Face to your Name.

The 'numbers game' is also debatable. Just how many daily tweets are acceptable? Here are some thoughts from our Twitter-nation survey.

"I dislike it when someone blasts out 20 or so Tweets in a row - I assume they must use some software app to do this - so that my whole Twitter page is filled with nothing but their Tweets. I mean, I am VERY chatty on Twitter, but I try to space out my Tweets so I am not hogging the Tweetstream!"
  Posted by Dana Willhoit

"I would agree on the bombardment of tweets by one person, monopolizing the stream."
  Posted by Diana Baldwin Martinez

"Once you start getting into double digit tweets a day, you need to seriously reconsider the 'importance' of your contribution to the Twittersphere unless you are writing headlines for a news service or issuing fire department activity reports."
  Posted by Gayle Falkenthal, APR

Moving right along, using Twitter for personal conversations is another sore spot. Twitter is not a chat room.

"What bothers me is when two people that you follow have a personal conversation that goes on for pages. If you are going to have a conversation that lasts more than a few tweets, take it somewhere else. I am very happy on twitter because I just unfollow anyone that does annoy me."
  Posted by Jennifer Wagner

We want to thank everyone for all their insights and for taking the time to respond. Now, let's wrap this up with our Top Ten Tweeting Tips. 

Top Ten Tweeting Tips
1. DO censor yourself - limit your tweets and space them throughout the day. Think in terms of five times an hour, tops, or ten times a day.
hog the tweetstream with run-on tweets. Can't get it into 140 characters? Consider a blog entry.

2. DO use tweets to network and build relationships "Social Media" says it all.
register multiple accounts to repetitively broadcast the same message or hard sell - that's spamming.

3. DO use Twitter as a professional branding tool. And yes, it's okay to include some personalized background on your homepage.
gang up with other Twitterers to hard sell, or push and over-promote.

4. DO use DM to reply to one person and always, always respond to a DM or reply sent to you.
use Twitter as a chat room and send endless DM's to one person.
5. DO contribute regularly to groups you created.
feel obliged to follow all your followers.
6. DO post a range of comments - from news and newsworthy, to humourous or helpful.
ever criticize publicly or spoil "big-moments." Just because you've seen the movie doesn't mean the rest of us have.

7. DO give credit to a tweet's original writer.
retweet without recognition; some would saythat's plagiarism.

8. DO let your followers know when you'll be away.

DON'T use auto-direct messaging as a substitute for personal tweets.

9. DO suppress the wine demons that urge you to tweet after a glass too many.
get too personal, ever.

10. DO stay tuned for updates.
hesitate to tweet us with your thoughts!
Interview with Diane

This month's edition of B Magazine features an interview with Diane Craig about her career and organ and tissue donation.  Read it here:  Article in BM Magazine
Mark your calendars!
My official blog, The Look of Success by Diane Craig™, debuts this June with twice-weekly postings, every Tuesday and Thursday.
My goal is to help keep you ahead of the curve; so every week, you'll find tips and techniques for maintaining your own polished look of success. And I'll share my thoughts on the newsmakers who set the trends - when they get it right and when they don't, including their headliner faux pas.
  • I'll share my expertise on wardrobe planning - from what works best in the boardroom, or packing for a business conference, to how to maximize your own sense of style.
  • You'll find the latest news and views on social media, or "working a room," or how to use body language effectively, and respectfully.
  • Dining etiquette is a "must have" skill. Keep up with the latest updates - from tapas table manners to sushi skills and chopstick decorum.
It's my business to be at the forefront of recent developments, and now it will be my pleasure to keep you informed, too.

This Month's Survey - Summer Attire
Summer is fast approaching.  Every year, I am asked if it is appropriate for women to go without hose and for men to go without socks.  What do you think?
1.  When is it appropriate for women to go without hose?
a.  It is appropriate to go without hose only if your legs are well tanned
b.  It is appropriate to go without hose only when you wear sandals
c.  It is inappropriate to go without hose at any time, and sandals are unprofessional
2.  When is it appropriate for men to go without socks?
a.  It is appropriate to wear shoes without socks on casual days
b.  It is appropriate to go without socks only when you wear sandals
c.  It is inappropriate to go without socks at any time, and sandals are unprofessional
Sandrine's Gift of Life


sandrines gift banner

This year marks the 10th Anniversary of my daughter's passing.  My darling little girl Sandrine lost her life in a school bus accident at the age of 11.  
Memorial Service for Sandrine
May 24, 2009, 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Pinecrest Cemetery, 2500 Baseline Road (just east of Greenbank), Ottawa, Canada map
Pastor Roger Keyzers who celebrated Sandrine's service in 1999 will lead us into prayer.  We will have a number of special guests and we hope to remember Sandrine with all friends and family. After the service, we invite you all to stay for some light refreshments and share old times.   
RSVP here if you're Facebook user, or by email to if you're not.
Live Green Ribbon Event
On April 23, 2009, approximately 80 people joined together to form a Live Green Ribbon at Queen's Park as part of Organ and Tissue Donation Awareness Week.  
green ribbon 2009 
The green ribbon is the internationally recognized symbol for organ and tissue donation. By using people to form the ribbon shape, we symbolize the life-giving and life-enhancing affects of organ and tissue donation. Each person who makes up the ribbon represents those on waiting lists across the province and country. It also symbolizes the donors and donor families who have given so generously to help others. 
Contact Us
If you have an etiquette or business dress-related question, email us at and we will respond in confidence. With the person's permission, selected questions may be answered in a future issue of CORPORATE CLASS NEWS.  

Diane Craig                                                 Cindy Desormeaux
Certified Image and Etiquette Consultant      Business Development            
Toronto Head Office                                    Ottawa Branch
44 Charles Street West, Suite 4711               Tel:  613-799-2422
Toronto, CANADA  M4Y 1R8
Tel:   416-967-1221
Fax:  416-967-2818

Corporate Class is a Registered Official Provider and Trainer to the Canadian Federal Public Service - PWGSC - PS Online
This monthly e-newsletter is distributed by Corporate Class Inc. one of North America's leading image and protocol consulting firms. Our main focus is to help individuals and companies to outclass their competitors at home and abroad. For more information or to schedule a speaking engagement, personal consultation or seminar, please contact Diane or Cindy.
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