Dear Santa: My Twitter Wish List

Dear Santa,

This year, I’ve fallen in love with Twitter.  You remember I sent my first tweet just over a year ago, and I’ve never looked back.  I launched this blog one year ago, and Twitter connected me with many helpful people.

This Christmas, I’d really appreciate it if you could just change a few things on the service for me and a few hundred million users.  Here’s my list:

I’m always getting direct messages saying things like:

“look at this pic of you!”

“someone caught you in this video.”

“Horrible things about you!”

“find out who unfollowed you.”

“Early investors got filthy rich.”

“Someone is making cruel things up about you!”

I don’t know what these are, and I think they may be viruses.  Why not create an easy way to report and remove these?  Or a “spam alert” button?  Then Twitter could sweep them away for good.

Oh, and the people doing this, would you mind putting coal in their stockings?

13 Tips for Twitter Effectiveness

Photo by cobalt123 on flickr.

This time last year, I was a Twitter skeptic.  How do you find the time to tweet?  Who cares what you ate for dinner?  I don’t care what you are watching on TV.

What I knew of the service was limited because I wasn’t a participant.  My judgment of Twitter was like watching a show from the obstructed view section, then trying to rate the performance.

I finally joined Twitter and sent my first tweet on November 16, 2011.  A month later, I was fully “Twidicted.”  I launched a blog and one of my first posts was Why You Shouldn’t Avoid Twitter Any Longer.

As I started to gain followers, I learned a great deal from them.  Here are some of my Twitter tips and common mistakes (yes, many of which I proudly made personally).

Tip 1:  Learn from role models.

 Once I joined, I jumped right in.  Watching others, reading articles, and asking questions was all part of the fun.  Peppering my celebrity and non-celebrity friends alike about how they use the service made an interesting subject.

The Twitter community is made up of people happy to help, who love the service, and have information to share.  Ask away.

For me, the key question was:  How do I use this social media tool effectively?

 Tip 2:  Start with purpose.

3 Steps to Building Your Online Presence With Ron Edmondson

Ron Edmondson is quick to tell you that he is first and foremost a pastor.  And, while that is true, he also has a strong online presence that uniquely qualifies him to talk about social media.  His leadership blog is widely read, and he is active on Twitter and Facebook.

I met Ron online through Twitter, and we began discussing various leadership issues.  Just north of Nashville Ron started one of the fastest growing churches in the U.S.  He recently moved to Kentucky to lead another church.  Before he joined the ministry, Ron was a business owner.  His experiences running a small business, starting and rapidly growing organizations, and leading online were all topics I wanted to ask him in person.

In this nine-minute interview, we discuss:

  • The similarities and differences between leading a business and a church
  • How he has grown a church through the use of technology and social media
  • Why he was an early adopter of the Internet, Facebook, Twitter, and blogging
  • How he found his “blogging voice”
  • Mistakes he made along the way

I especially appreciated Ron’s advice to leaders who want to start building an online presence:

Michael Hyatt’s Advice on How to Get Noticed in a Noisy World

In a previous post, Michael Hyatt talked about leadership.  After that discussion, we talked about his new book, Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World.

The subtitle of the book sums it up well:  “A step by step guide for anyone with something to say or sell.”  It’s a book for small business owners who need to increase their visibility.  It’s a book for aspiring authors who want to publish and sell their book.  It’s a book for anyone who needs to differentiate a product or service and stand out using modern technology.

Michael wrote it because, as a publisher, he would turn away excellent work because the prospective author didn’t have a platform.  Where “Content is king,” he says, “A platform is queen.”  He wanted to write a book that would help people build their own platform.

In the book, five directives are outlined:

1.  Start with wow.

Michael Hyatt on Leadership

Michael Hyatt is the Chairman of Thomas Nelson.  In addition, he is a New York Times best-selling author, a speaker, and a personal friend of mine.  He also runs a hugely popular leadership blog, which consistently is ranked among the top in the world.

A few days ago, I had the opportunity to talk with Michael about what he has learned about leaders from his storied career and his social networking experiences.

5 Characteristics of Authentic Leaders

1.  INSIGHT

2.  INITIATIVE

3.  INFLUENCE

4.  IMPACT

5.  INTEGRITY

Michael explained the five characteristics of authentic leaders:

1.  They have insight.

2.  They demonstrate initiative.

3.  They have true influence.