In the past several weeks I’ve had occasion to meet some people I previously only knew on Twitter. It’s always interesting to meet face-to-face after building a virtual relationship. I mistakenly read in so much from how they communicate online. Then, bam! Here comes the “real” person.

In one of those examples from the past few weeks, I had been finding the person’s Twitter messages pretty banal and boring. But meeting the author live completely altered my view – she is creative, funny and gregarious. I could have a margarita with her on a regular basis!

In another example, the author’s messages have been consistently insightful, entertaining and chock full of valuable information. Upon meeting the individual in question, I was delighted to learn that he matches his online persona perfectly – what he is online is true to his live character.

So, this all has me thinking about my own persona. What I write here, what I write on Twitter, what I comment on other boards and blogs – is it true to my live persona? And what is my “real” persona – the live one or the electronic one? Are people I know virtually surprised when they meet me face-to-face?

This bears more consideration. And my mantra of “have a plan and a strategy for how you’ll use the online tools” now has an addendum: consider what persona you want to put out there (inside or outside your organization).