Don’t try this at home

AKA – my top 5 social media mistakes.

As you jump into social media, somewhat tentative at first hoping not to be totally exposed for your limitations; I’m sure there were several ‘do-overs’ you wish you had. But as we all know on the internet, once it’s out there it is ‘really’ out there.

I will share mine and hopefully it will save embarrassment for others.

My Avatar

Dorman………really? That’s the best you got? That’s really warm and friendly……..not.

In my defense, it was the only picture I had with my face that was formatted correctly for Twitter. I thought it would be better than an egg. Trust me, I got plenty of ribbing fromMarcusSheridan about this (and rightfully so).

Fortunately, I recently got a camera for my Skype calls and was able to upgrade.

  • Rule # 1 – take the time to find a decent pic, this is your first impression.
Who to follow
I started with celebrities, sports personalities, athletes, etc; I thought this would be an interesting group. Wrong…….boring group to follow.
Twitter started making sense once I took the time to engage with ‘real’ people on their blogs.
  • Rule # 2 – follow people who know ‘social’ media means two-way communication. Take the time to develop your relationships.
Don’t whine
I wasn’t shy about jumping in and leaving comments because I saw everyone else doing it. I know some people are hesitant to do this, but it is really the only way to learn.
However, early on I did get a little jealous when some banter did not include me and felt I was being ignored; and it did make me question whether I belonged or not. In fact, I posted My Fork in the Road. Fortunately enough Gini Dietrich sent out an SOS and saved me from myself.
  • Rule # 3 – conversations do go on without you; you are not getting ignored and don’t take it personally. Yes, they do see you.
It doesn’t matter who follows you
It always confused me how I could follow someone and engage with them on their blogs and consider them friends; but they never followed back. Once again, I felt it was blog worthy and wrote Well, that was Awkward. Not that I am a grizzled veteran, but this is really so insignificant especially if they are engaging with you anyway.
  • Rule # 4 – if it’s that important to you, tweet and tell them you tried to DM but realized they weren’t following. Let them decide from there. Trust me, no big deal.
Why don’t these people comment on my blog
Well, let’s see; maybe my content is not compelling enough. Or, maybe I’m not high enough on the pecking order or in their niche. Finally, you can only see so many people.
Yes, I go to plenty of sites and certainly see who is there and makes me wonder at times. But then again, I can’t stop by everybody’s site either and so I at least try to reciprocate to the ones who do visit.
  • Rule # 5 – don’t expect reciprocation just because you frequent somebody’s site. If you feel you are doing all the heavy lifting with nothing in return, then just move on.
I e-mailed Ashley Ambirge at The Middle Finger Project a month ago to tell her I tried to reach out but felt it wasn’t reciprocated; I unfollowed. She had no idea; so don’t be too hasty to pull the plug. And while I’m mentioning Ashley, if you want to read something powerful, read her Rock Bottom post. It’s strong so hold on.
Agree/disagree? How about you, what missteps have you made? What was important to you early that now doesn’t even make your radar?
I will finish by saying I didn’t get beat up too bad and still enjoying the journey; hope you are as well.
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115 thoughts on “Don’t try this at home

  1. Augh! Bill – what are you doing in my head! It’s not surprising to me that it’s YOU who outlines this so well. You jumped right in and got in the conversation and wore your heart on your sleeve (hard to do online; admirable!) and everyone likes you, or loves you (still, no hug). Learn by doing and learn from your “mistakes” are standard practice, but blog about it THIS WELL so that others can learn from your “detours-which-were-really-not-detours” is beyond the standard. Quite a bit.
    LOL – good for you Bill! This is my favorite of all your posts so far!
    Lori

    • Thanks Lori; these certainly weren’t all of my mistakes…………..:).

      Even though it is social media, things are a little different than in real life. Therefore, I would take some things fairly personal when in reality it wasn’t about me at all.

      Especially early in the learning curve it’s can be confusing about what is acceptable and what is not; I just tried to be myself and let everything else go from there.

      So good to see you and thanks so much for the very kind words today. I need to get back over to your place and see what is happening.

  2. Hi Bill,
    I’m with you on having a good picture. First impressions are lasting and incredibly powerful. All that you say is sound advice for insuring success on the internet. A very good post! The problem I wrestle with is: does success on the internet come with a price tag I’m willing to pay. It can be a very time consuming addictive activity. Any thoughts on making sure that the proper balance is achieved with the other activities in your life.
    Riley

    • Not ‘can’ be; it IS time consuming. I think we all have to find our ‘what is enough’ point. A lot will depend what you are trying do do with it as well. If this was my ‘job’ and I was trying to monetize it, I could see where it could be an all day affair.

      I’m getting better at organizing especially through Google Reader as to who and when I see my community. I might not be as ‘instant’ response as before, but I’m still out there. I’m also doing a better job of knowing if I only have an hour or two, I will mentally prioritize the 2-3 main things I want to accomplish.

      Thanks for the kind words and visit. As you progress I hope you feel you have a little more control over the process.

      Good to see you; hope all is well.

  3. Ok, I am tweeting your post, commenting on it, have already followed you on twitter and I have a decent pic! So, most of the jobs done…lesson learnt.

    As for mistakes, I used to visit these real cheesy blogs because I their online hyper activity was equivalent to their good social networking. Not true, not all who are super active on the net are good social net workers, they just want to leave their links around. Look for people who are qualitatively active, makes more sense to be in touch with them.

    And going by the number of comments on each of your brilliant posts, looks like your job is well done 😉

    Hope you have a lovely day!

    • Brilliant posts might be a stretch but I do think through most of them you get a flavor of the real me and what I’m about.

      I still visit a couple of posts that aren’t set up for a lot of banter, but I like the people and the material so I will hang with them awhile.

      One of my questions would be to some of my early visitors that are no longer around would be “did I not acknowledge you; was my material not to your liking; or why don’t you ever come back”? More from curiosity but I still seem them around at sites that I don’t think are that much different than mine.

      So good to see you and I do appreciate your support, especially now that I know ‘where you are from’…….:).

  4. Good Morning Bill! I love what you’ve outlined. You haven’t done anything wrong in your journey. We’ve all started at the same place, and that’s at the very beginning. No one starts in the middle, or 25% down the road, so we are all on equal footing at some point in this journey. Actually, we are all on the same foot at many points in this journey, but it often feels like we’re the only ones going through it.

    Your point about not being included in conversations is an interesting one. As in real life, there are established relationships that have been going on before us. It often appears they are cliques, when they’re just people who have spent more time together, learning, laughing, sharing content and sometimes feelings, so they look more comfortable talking in a group. If they are good networkers, then when you appear in their thread to say hello, one or more of them should do what they would do in real life if you walked up to them at a Business After Hours, which is to greet you, then introduce you to others. This doesn’t always happen. Sometimes people just don’t take the time for whatever reason. You’re right…move on, and try again later.

    Just as in advertising when it takes at least 8 times for someone to see a advertisement (I’m sure it’s more these days with all the messages running around out there) to begin to leave an impression, it often takes many attempts before someone will notice and acknowledge us.

    It’s important to note that people will forget us if we stay away too long. I always tell people that it’s not other’s job to remember us when we’re trying to make an impression, or form a relationship. It’s our job to stay the course, and to stay in front of people frequently enough to stay on their radar. Again, virtual and actual life are the same in this respect. There will a few exceptions as our special friends will check on us when they don’t see us, but it’s not as common as we wish it was.

    There’s so much more I can share, but I don’t want to put all to sleep with my novel-in-the-making!

    Good post. Thanks for sharing Bill. Have a wonderful week!

    • No sleep here, I thoroughly enjoyed the depth of your response.

      You make a good point when you say ‘If they are good networkers, then when you appear in their thread to say hello, one or more of them should do what they would do in real life if you walked up to them at a Business After Hours, which is to greet you, then introduce you to others’. Most do but I think as we become more familiar with each other we have to be careful not to appear exclusive instead of inclusive.

      I do know my community and try to know when your pattern changes so I can reach out to make sure everything is ok; especially when there has been no ‘grand’ announcement or anything. But I hear ya, if I just quit posting I wonder how many would say “hey Dorman, I really miss your posts”? Hmmmm

      I do consider most of my community as friends and hopefully I make them feel that way.

      I always enjoy seeing you around especially since you were one of my early friends.

      I hope you had a great day.

    • Agreeing with Mimi, most excellent comment Nancy. We want to skip ahead and get things done so quickly, we sometimes forget WHY we start at the beginning: because there’s value to the journey, hopefully with fun and learning along the way. Can’t do it all at warp speed, things worth doing often require a little more effort, a few more impressions.. and maybe a little more time.

  5. Such “good” mistakes. Ones I’m sure most of us have made. I still sometimes feel like the wallflower at the dance (to use your image Bill), when the banter is clearly full of inside jokes and convo that’s awkward (inappropriate?) to break into. You can start feeling like the new kid in class all over again. But I’ve found that the best strategy is to just forge ahead, be true to yourself, and add comments for the sake of adding value and sparking further dialogue. Or sometimes, just to add a witty, sarcastic or touche (and I don’t know how to put the little mark over the “e” in touche…i.e. tooshay) touch of flavour.

    Great post: I agree with Lori…one of the best so far. Excluding, of course, the vlog, which was simply awesome. Cheers! Kaarina

    • I don’t know how to put the ‘ on touche so I use the apostrophe……….touche’…………:).

      Thanks for the compliment about the post; you never know what will really resonate with people at times, do you?

      I am probably more apt to ‘butt in’ on somebody I know but I will do it to others; hopefully making them feel appreciative because someone read their comment and they were ‘noticed’ too. You hit the nail on the head, and just be yourself.

      As you make your way around you certainly want to be socially acceptable so it might make you hesitant at times but in the social world I would say the more convo the better.

      I loved your post today and I do appreciate your support and taking the time to stop by.

      So you liked the vlog, huh? I am thinking of doing another one but maybe more creative and silly; like me of course………:)

      • Thanks for the compliment on my post today. Always glad to see you stop by, and of course, I wouldn’t want to miss an invisible blogger post. Hey…you’re gonna’ have to re-think that title soon, as you are becoming VERY visible, my friend.

        I look forward to your next vlog…I see smoking jacket, pipe and slippers a la Hugh Hefner look. Just sayin’ 🙂

  6. Hi Bill, it takes a real man to admit his mistakes, so kudos to you!

    This list was very recognizable to say the least, think I made every single one of them at some point.. I feel like I’ve already made a lot of improvements in terms of “getting” the social media thing thanks to observing others. At times I still can feel a bit like I don’t really “belong” in certain communities, but this takes time just like in real-life relationship. In fact social media are not as complex as we sometimes like to believe. Isn’t it just about giving without expecting anything in return?

    Outstanding post!
    Wim

    • You hit the nail on the head Wim, it is about giving without expecting anything in return. With that attitude you usually get plenty in return. Having said that though, I think we all want to be ‘heard’ or ‘noticed’ if we are making the effort so it can be easy to be a little hurt if you feel slighted.

      I also agree some communities are more conducive to making you feel welcome than others and this can just be personality or purpose of the blog. If it’s all about monetization they might not be as apt to spend a lot of time in engagement.

      Ultimately if we be ourselves and don’t try to over-think this thing every thing else seems to work out, don’t you think?

      Good to see you Wim and thanks for stopping by.

  7. Bill I still liked you in the old blue background pic…yes Avatars are important but unless you have a pic of a vampire on there, I don’t think too much of them.
    What really matters to me is how people ‘behave’ online. I know a guy who uses a lion’s head as an avatar and he is a great friend. So behavior before pics.

    I really enjoy how you engage. From great people I admire like Gini to some who really don’t get it.
    The fact that you actually reached out and were ignored is shocking. In the end I do believe some bloggers aren’t interested in building a community but rather have as much drive through traffic as possible to click on their little ads…

    Have a great Monday Bill.

    • I’ve seen that lion’s head guy; I’ve tried to take that from him a time or two but he’s go the Bohemian death grip on that thing. Maybe I will try to vampire.

      The main reason I brought up the Avatar is by now you probably have a pretty good idea of my personality and even though I do wear a tie to work, the picture just seemed out of character for my persona.

      But yes, behavior is how you will be judged and it’s pretty easy to spot the sincere, ‘good’ guy from the rest.

      In Ashley’s defense, she will go days w/out coming back to comments. That’s what led me to believe my comment wasn’t even worth her time. She loves that people come by but that’s not her main objective w/ her blog. She certainly is sassy and in your face, but I think she is a tremendous writer and I really like to read her when I need a splash in the face.

      It’s up to us to align with the people we feel comfortable with and who appreciate our support. If it’s not working, then we can always go somewhere else, huh?

      Good to see you; loved your post today. Thanks for stopping by.

  8. Excellent piece, Bill. I’d just like to add one more thing if I may. Don’t assume that because you know what your “short hand” abbreviations mean that everyone knows. My initiative is oftentimes referred to as MIC however anyone who’s ever dealt with audio will refer to a microphone as a mic. If you’re going to use a shortened form to refer to something important to your readers, make sure you spell out in long form the first time you use it with the shortened version in brackets immediately afterwards. That way your readers will know what you mean when you default to your “short hand.”

    • I have to be careful in my day job with insurance when I speak to people and not use a bunch of insurance jargon or abbreviations. I want people to get a flow with what I’m writing.

      Ok, this is the third time you’ve been by and I don’t know what to expect. The other two times you were here I had over 100 comments both times…………..:). Crazy stuff indeed.

      I know what your niche or interests are and wasn’t sure if you would weigh in on this one, but I appreciate the fact that you did.

      Hope your son is well and enjoying his day and he makes it a better place to live one gesture at a time.

      Good to see you.

    • Elyse, you have done it again; I don’t think I’m quite to 100 responses but pretty darn close. You must be my ‘secret sauce’………:). I hope you and your son had a great week.

  9. Bill, that who to follow one really got me going. I do follow LeVar Burton on Twitter (the only famous type I follow), not because I’m interested in building a Twitter relationship with him, but because I thought it would be interesting to see what he’s up to after Roots, Reading Rainbow, and Star Trek. Umm… not much. But he’s not a bad guy. It’s just, I realized if I want to talk to someone about my own concerns, I needed to find people more like me. Still following, but still underwhelmed. Thanks for pointing that one out.

    • Truth be known, I’ll bet a lot of the celebrities still haven’t figured out what twitter is all about. To me, it is engagement and I think you can only really do that through the blogs. I’m guessing most of the celebs are posting on a set schedule if at all.

      I’m certainly glad you took the time to stop by and I appreciate your comments.

      I hope you are having a great day.

  10. Here’s a tip…you can launch your avatar on the web via gravatar.com and when the applications you use look for your avatar, the ones you’ve approved, posted and earmarked for distribution will (mostly) appear when you comment on blogs and elsewhere.

    • Actually, I think I might have done that on gravatar.com; maybe I need to check it out to see if I have an account. It probably only has the ‘suit’ in there………….:).

      Thanks for the tip as you know I can be somewhat challenged with the cool stuff.

      I hope your day went well and loved your Father’s Day post. Good to see you.

  11. As ever Bill you have managed to get to the heart of many of the concerns and mistakes that many of us have been down in our social media lives so far.

    I agree with all your lessons and I am particularly interested in what you have to say about comments. I too have had that feeling of being an ‘outsider’ when I comment on other blogs and see the amazing strings of comments that fly between all you witty people but what I need to realise is that everyone was the same until they started to jump in and contribute something. So I shall learn that lesson from you and not take it personally but continue chipping in with my ‘pearls of wisdom’!

    The only thing I can add from experience is be patient, persevere and don’t panic if things don’t always work out as you had hoped.

    Thanks for another thoughtful post Bill 🙂

    • Hey Tony, I like your ‘The only thing I can add from experience is be patient, persevere and don’t panic if things don’t always work out as you had hoped’. It’s only a comment, right?

      I’ve seen some complain when people just leave “great post”, but truth be known I think most are happy somebody took the time to stop by and say anything.

      It can be hard to allow yourself to jump in if you don’t know someone, but what the heck; if it resonates go ahead and drop your ‘pearls of wisdom’.

      Good to see you today; thanks for coming by.

  12. Bill, I am so grateful you chose to enter the world of social media! I think the way you share your journey and the authenticity with which you approach this exchange is SO refreshing. And the care and loyalty with which you treat your online relationships is second to none. I love that you learn out loud…I do, too. And I wish I needed the kind of insurance you provide because I have the sense that your clients are really, really lucky to have you in their corner!

    P.S. I can no longer follow your comments because you are so popular that my in box will be full for the next two days! You are so not invisible!!

    • Wow, that was really some nice things to say. I think I’ll print this and tape it to my credenza…….:).

      You have certainly been a joy to get to know and your support is very much appreciated. You got me concerned with your post because it was so true; just don’t bail out on me……….

      That might be a stretch on the comments, but kind of funny. There have been some people I follow that I definitely had to shut off the comments; I would wake up the the am w/ 50+ comments…..yikes.

      I do have some very long term relationships w/ some of my customers and I do try to get close to them and make sure I am always bring value to the relationship.

      Good to see you and hope you had a great day.

  13. Hey Bill!

    Yup, we’ve all made rookie mistakes in social media. Thanks for having the courage to share yours with everyone. Some of us would like you to believe that we all knew exactly what we were doing from the start;) But, as your other followers mentioned, we all started in the same place.

    I think my biggest mistake in the beginning was observing too much. I do think it’s good to look around and watch others. However, I let some good blog post conversations pass me by because I was too afraid to jump in and say something. Then I realized I was missing out on the fun and I should just talk already!

    • Where I was hesitant was getting all the right gadgets or buttons or pay attention to measurement or stats. It didn’t really concern me because all I wanted to do was engage. It allowed me to build a community pretty quickly, but it left some holes in the wall.

      I probably wouldn’t change much except getting a hosted site if I would have had any idea I would get this kind of traffic. I truly had no idea…….

      So good to see you and hope you are staying busy transcribing and chasing the baby. I hope your day went well.

  14. Hey Bill,

    This is a list that most will be able to identify with. If they haven’t, it’s only because they haven’t recognized it YET!

    I still don’t get Twitter sometimes and people’s “thing” about not following anyone back in return. For me, if I follow someone it’s because I want to establish a mutual relationship. Not a one-sided relationship. So when this happens, and it doesn’t correct over the course of a week or two, I simply move on and unfollow that person. I have no issue with someone not wanting to follow me…but it looks strange when you see someone following 30 people, but having 1000 followers. the one-sided look…looks kind of anti-social to me.

    Same thing when it comes to blogging and visiting other sites. This is a tougher one for me because I simply don’t have a lot of time to put into blogging (at least as much time as many) because of everything else on my LIST – but when I find that I’m only giving and not getting anything in return – I have to ask myself if the relationship is worth it. Sometimes it is worth it because the value I receive is “high”, but sometimes it’s not so I simply move on.

    I hope you had a great Father’s Day Bill!

    • Thanks for the Father’s Day wishes; hope you had a great one as well. It was a low-key but a great day.

      There are a couple of people I follow and comment on their posts and I’m pretty sure if they haven’t been to my place to comment by now they aren’t going to. However, I know they read my posts from time to time because they will make a comment about it so I will just leave it at that for now.

      I’ve had quite a few of the PR crowd start to follow me and for the most part I have reciprocated. Most I probably won’t have a chance to engage with but maybe I can figure it out down the road.

      I hope you new job is going well and you still are on track with your plans.

      Good to see you and thanks for taking the time to come visit.

  15. Bill,

    I’m working to get a blog up and running, and boy am I glad I found you. Your honesty about the entire process has been a great help. I am certainly skilled when it comes to embarrassing myself, so maybe your advice will save me some pain along the way.

    I have a long way to go before I understand how to properly use Twitter, but my step one was to delete many of the famous personalities I was following. Yes … boring!

    Also, I’ve been somewhat apprehensive about leaving comments, but am just starting on that journey. First stop was really this place, then Gini’s, then … I’m sure I’ll trip myself up quite a few times. My question to you is how in the world have you found the time to comment so often on so many blogs? Yowza! Family life and the day job sometimes get in the way, at least for me.

    I’d say your writing and commenting style is perfectly suited for blogging as it starts the conversation. Oh yeah, you have that funny and clever thing going for you too.

    Did I sound like a Bill Dorman toady? Hopefully I’m not too much of a brownnose, but I’m sure you’ll develop a few fans along the way 🙂

    Thanks again!

    • Just remember, one’s nose can never be too brown……………….:).

      The thing that helped me the most was getting all the people I follow on a regular basis loaded with their rss feeds (their blog web address) into Google Reader. It lets me know who has a new post and allows me to go right to it instead of trying to pick it up from the twitter stream.

      The other thing is my wife and I are empty nesters, so this has replaced some TV time. Still time though, huh? And it will consume you if you let it, so schedule your time and stick with it.

      I got pretty plugged into the communities before I even thought about rolling my blog out and even when I did, I really thought I was going to be exposed for the fraud I thought I was. Guess what, it didn’t even raise an eyebrow even though I panicked the first time I hit the publish button. Trust me, ‘invisible’ was very appropriate for awhile.

      My original focus was commenting and you really can’t go wrong unless you become very opinionated, political, or too religious. That might not sit well with some in the social crowd, but ultimately just be yourself and you will do fine.

      I’m no guru, but feel free to check in anytime if you have questions and I will tell you if I have addressed it or just ignored it.

      Thanks for coming by and good luck on the journey.

      • Bill,

        Well, at some point I need to stop my kowtowing … maybe not 🙂

        Thanks for the tips. I think I’m going to be exposed for the fraud I am with my first real post, so I’ll panic when I finally hit publish for sure. Oh well, I’m finally learning to embrace discomfort.

        I’m beginning to think you ARE a guru (oh, there I go again!) Seriously, thanks for your help!

    • With WordPress, you can get it set up and start writing away and save the drafts. Once you feel comfortable enough, proof read it about 18 times and change and change and change and then hit publish. I won’t lie, it scared the mud out of me. I could just hear the collective community saying “and who do you think you are and what makes you think you can blog”?

      Guess what, I had two comments and one was from a guy I work with. It was huge though, I thought I hit the big time w/ a comment.

      Trust me, I know I’m somewhat out of the norm getting the traffic I do. But I am no where close to being ‘there’ yet as I have a pretty good idea in my mind what that looks like. And I don’t mean by having more comments; I’ll just know………….

      I will say I’m enjoying it though and I’m trying not to over-think anything.

      Good luck and don’t be hung up on writing epic posts; just write.

      Hope your day went well.

  16. Bill,

    I have been going through a painful self evaluation of my own blog. I have found it wanting. I have a litany of excuses as to why I have let it flounder, but the truth of the matter is I need to suck it up and get to work. Your list is a great reminder that one needs to always reevaluate their plan and to not jump to conclusions.

    Thanks,

    Brian

    • Well, that was an extremely average response……….but what should I expect, huh?

      Reevaluate and take action; I’ve been slow to move off center but I really need to do a better job of clarifying my vision and expectations. I’m not in a huge hurry but I don’t need to just spin my wheels either.

      I love your work and really need to spend more time over there.

      Hopefully we will both run out of excuses and just get it done; sooner rather than later.

      Thanks so much for stopping by Brian, much appreciated.

    • Actually if you dredge the flounder through a nice mixture of flour and bread crumbs then fry lightly in a pan and squeeze so lemon wedges on it, you have one delicious main course.

  17. Bill, Very excellent insights. I would talk about all of the missteps I’ve made, but I don’t want to exceed the text limit on your blog. 🙂 So… to your points:

    1. Yeah, I dumped the corporate “tie” pic for social media eventually too.
    2. Of course, when you start, you follow celebs (whether online or other), magazines, etc. and soon find out there is no engagement. Real people are by far the most rewarding.
    3. Agree there is no reason to feel left out of conversations. You just have to remember that your friends in the offline world talk to each other without you. The only difference with SM is you see the conversation.
    4 and 5. The most important is not to worry about either of these things. Just help others and it all comes around in the end. Not saying that if there is no reciprocation after awhile that you shouldn’t move on, but not to expect quid pro quo or to approach it with that mindset. Of course, you understand this better than almost anyone!

    • You are correct by saying there is really not much of this going on you need to worry too much about. If you just be yourself, most will work out. The main thing is if you are not being offensive.

      I too think if you give (comment/engage) w/out minimal or no expectations in return, it will come back to. Everything is not quid pro quo in this world.

      Because the internet is permanent and so visible, this is probably the biggest reason people sit back and watch.

      Good to see you Adam and hope your week is going well.

  18. Back when the online game EverQuest busted out I think around end of 2001 new people who did dorky things were called noobs. And arrogant players who once were noobs wouldn’t always be nice to you. The Twitter is the same. I think too often people get caught up in the way ‘they think’ it should be and forget once they were a noob themselves. I think we all started slowly then as we got used to things got better.

    This Avatar was my second one. I wanted to be Brand Fiction of an Alien on the Twitter like @AdBroad ‘s business Brand Fiction Factory helps brands be. It was fun but Mark Schaefer liked me for some reason and called me to tell me to use a photo of myself. So I did and it reaped sizable rewards with people liking me more. And ironically enough I can still be an alien on the Twitter.

    I think the reason the Twitter has so many accounts (I heard 160mil) but only about 30mil active users a day (meaning those who post more than once a day and even someone who posts 4 times as you know isn’t really active) is because people get put off with figuring it out. Hashtags. #FF’s. Twitter Chat Groups etc. I stopped #FF’s because I could easily spam with 200 worthy peeps every friday.

    Nice post bill!

    • Because there are new people coming in and trying to figure it out, posts like this might resonate w/ them to a degree. To others, this has been played out so much they don’t want to hear about it anymore. I just know I stumbled around for awhile but I must have been in the right crowd because they’ve always offered a hand up when I hit the deck.

      We all see the posts of why you will or won’t follow; why you won’t come to my blog; why or why you don’t automate and it has different meanings and impact depending where you are in the cycle.

      Yes, you can still be an alien on twitter. In fact, they had a pic in our local paper this weekend and there was a crew fixing this ‘space ball’ thingy at a shopping center. I was going to send it to you with the caption “Howie’s house” but it was in print only, I couldn’t find it on their website.

      What is funny is people asking me advice now; I think I’m going to change my bio to guru or maven or something distinguished, and of course CEO of all this………..

      Hope all is well and your week has been productive so far.

      • How about Gurmavenio? Add chief in front. Of maybe Chef and you will confound everyone into thinking you are some super secret hired hit tweeter.

        Would of loved that Photo of my home. It had better have A/C I know what it is like where you live 8)

    • I think Chief in front of anything gives you instant credibility. I’ll just have to install a PayPal tab on my site and look the freak out…………it’s on now…………..

      And it do be hot down here, good thing I like it and acclimated to it. Throw in a few skeeters and gnats to make it just unpleasant enough you’ll come visit and spend your money to help our economy but not want to stay…………………..:)

  19. Bill,

    I don’t believe that there are mistakes in social media, just better ways to do things. How is that for a silly platitude. Ok, it is not really silly and I don’t totally buy it. John touched upon my philosophy in his comment.

    The most important thing you can do is try to be authentic and treat people the same way you would if you saw them in person.

    Twitter conversations can be tough sometimes because there is so much going on in a stream that sometimes people miss your comments. It is not intentional. I have about 3500 followers and sometimes I miss stuff or forget to reply. Periodically I am not sure what to say, which is kind of funny coming from me because I am not someone who gets tongue tied easily.

    I think that it is worth mentioning that what we write here lives forever. Sometimes people forget that and or are unaware of how many digital crumbs we leave around the net. Sometimes conversations come back to “bite you.”

    I would add that it is easier for misunderstandings to take place online because we don’t have the same resources in person. There are no verbal clues. We don’t always see the smile or recognize humor/sarcasm. It has gotten me into trouble a few times.

    Blogs are a funny place to me sometimes. There is not always a rhyme or reason as to why some blogs get more comments than others. Sometimes some blogs are more popular than others for the same reason people are more popular- because. No real answer beyond that.

    But if you write for yourself and don’t get too caught up in stats it is usually more fun- or so I have found.

    • I hear ya; we both have our certain style of humor and w/out the benefit of seeing us it someone could take it the wrong way.

      Yes, this stuff will live in perpetuity so if you wouldn’t be comfortable standing up in front of a room full of people and saying the same thing out loud, maybe you should think twice about printing it.

      There really are no mistakes on twitter, just different ways of doing it; of course some are annoying and as ‘friends’ it is not necessarily a bad thing to ‘help’ some of these people out.

      Blogs are definitely funny places to me; I did not come up with the invisible tag because I thought I was being cute and would have more than 3-5 people stop by. It was my excuse that if someone did stop by I could always fall back on “well, obvious I’m not serious about it”. I think I write ‘readable’ content, but really haven’t tried too hard to be compelling yet. I’ve had a few requests for guest posts but I’m not on anybody’s ‘must have’ list.

      Stats are probably important somewhere along the way but I agree in writing for yourself and having fun, then everything else will just take care of itself.

      So good to see you and hope the day has been good to you.

  20. Like Lori, I feel like you read my mind! With the exception of the avatar thing, I made these same mistakes, and more. I started by following some stars, along with the “social media celebs” and wondered why they weren’t reading my tweets. Can you imagine? Now, I only follow a few Hollywood-type celebs: Alyssa Milano (who I find extremely intelligent and insightful) and Tom Colicchio from Top Chef.

    I also figured out that it takes time to build online relationships, so I can’t expect someone to know me just because I commented on their blog once. I have completely lost track of my followers. Every since the Twitter list functionality stopped working (at least for me) I haven’t been able to keep my usual level of organization. Now, if someone I know doesn’t follow me, I don’t take it personally because I know that even with 800 or so followers, it’s tough to stay on top of things.

    As you know, I subscribe to a lot of blogs through Google Reader. I always read posts from people I know. I wish I had enough time to comment on all the posts I like or find especially thought-provoking. (I’m a much slower commenter than Jack!) My personal goal is 5 comments a day, out of the ~100 posts I read. Just because someone doesn’t leave a comment doesn’t mean they didn’t like my post.

    My embarrassing faux pas was not knowing that Twitter lists are public by default. I had written notes to myself to stay organized, like “Do not follow back, tweets are boring.” Of course, I got called out. My face was red for about a week.

    The most important mistake was exactly what Alicia referred to: observing too much. I lurked for way too long before jumping in. Everyone keeps saying this, but engaging with people is what social media is supposed to be about. Great insights Bill!

    • My embarrassing faux pas was not knowing that Twitter lists are public by default. I had written notes to myself to stay organized, like “Do not follow back, tweets are boring.” Of course, I got called out. My face was red for about a week…….CLASSIC……….I didn’t do this, but could certainly see myself doing so. I was late in the game w/ lists and finally figured out how to set them up for organization.

      We have a tendency to sit back because we’re afraid if we say something the reply might be “what the heck do you think you are doing” OR no reply at all.

      We all have to start somewhere and new people are coming in and trying to figure this out; so hopefully it resonated w/ some. I think Jack said it best “there really are no mistakes in twitter”…… although the ‘list’ faux pas of yours is pretty close……………:).

      Yes, there are a lot of people I like to see and Google Reader has helped tremendously.

      Good to see you and loved your Father’s Day post.

  21. I am SO glad you changed your avatar!

    I think a couple of the best tips you gave here were #s 3 & 5. SM is like life – it goes on without you. When you’re out for a while, it takes some time to get back into the swing of things, but it will happen. And in terms of being part of the conversation – as you said, it takes time, but it will happen. And if it doesn’t, like you said… move on. Nothing’s forcing us to stay with certain blogs, is it?

    That is actually the reason I’ve stopped commenting on a LOT of “big” blogs. I see these people talking about engaging, yada yada, but they only do so within their “inner circle.” So if people aren’t walking the talk, I head on out.

    My mistakes – you’re going to laugh – it took me about 6 months to figure out how to use Twitter DMs. When I did, I was appalled at how many (valid) messages there were that I hadn’t responded to. Aargh!

    This isn’t a mistake I made, fortunately, but I think it’s one that a lot of people new to SM do: they don’t include a good link as part of their bio, e.g. on Twitter. When I look at who’s following me, I always click through to their profile, and then to their link. If it goes to a sales page, they’re out. If their stream is filled with only RTs, or “buy this” kind of crap, they’re out. If they say they’re God’s gift to mankind, they’re usually out… and if they don’t have a link to support that, they’re definitely out!

    • Ha, it took me longer to figure out DM and lists. I didn’t know about DM until I tried to send something to someone who wasn’t following me.

      I think a big hesitancy for some is when you tweet, blog, comment, etc you feel like once it’s out there you have this huge spotlight shining on you, totally exposed. In reality, it is probably going unnoticed for the most part. However, I have different people comment me to at times they read something of mine and I had no idea they even knew I was out there.

      And to add one more thing about being limited; I wanted to change that Avatar for about 3 months. The only pics I had were too big and my twitter profile wouldn’t take them. I didn’t want to go ask someone, “hey, take my picture please”………..fortunately I had the light bulb moment w/ my new Skype camera………………..doh…………………:).

      I think I have a link in my bio………………yikes. I have been picking up several new followers a day. I really just check their tweet activity and make sure it’s not auto-generated follow. I think I will start checking bio’s. I made that joke about porny gravatars and sure enough, I must have gotten 15 of those that day. Scary, huh?

      Thanks so much for your comments and input. I have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know you better. I don’t think you knew what to do with me at first…………:).

      Hope you day is well in the DC and you have a good week.

  22. Another great post my friend and more lessons we have all learned. I frequently share my mistakes when I make them and trust me, I still make plenty. I guess the not following back on Twitter got under my skin in the beginning but like you, I learned it’s no big deal. As long as you are interacting, building relationships and having a good time I guess nothing else really matters.

    Thanks for being so transparent. Guess we both have that in common don’t we! 🙂

    Adrienne

    • What you see is what you get, huh? Trust me, I’m still making enough mistakes to cover several posts, those were just the ones that dealt w/ people and expectations.

      As I roll along, it’s interesting to see who stops by and who doesn’t. It seems every post is different and each post I will have somebody else step up and be a little more involved than others. I have a list of ‘titles’ that I want to write posts for but you just never know what resonates and will bring the traffic, huh?

      Relationship building is the fun part; worrying if I used the right keyword or posted on the right day seems like work to me. Oh well, 30 days from now I’ll probably have a completely different outlook; who knows?

      Good to see you as usual and thanks to taking the time to stop by; much appreciated.

  23. Want to “like” or drop “what he said” and “ITA” with Jack, Shonali and many others.. sigh. Not commenting bombing tonight.

    1) Note to self, update my avatar. Been playing that tune, just got to get it done. By a trained professional as DIY would do me no favors.
    2) Still learning that one; went on a feed or news kick back when I was only following 500; now I’m running out of room (2K limit) and cutting back on the noise. More interested in people than brands, feeds, etc. Now a puppy or ficus plant that tweets, that could be interesting.
    3) I try not whine in public.. or at least make it sound more like griping and venting. I’ve been… nee, ‘felt’ ignored and didn’t like it. Gini’s right.. but then so is Shonali and some only ‘walk the talk’ w/ an inner circle of parrots and sock puppets. What to do? Rhymes with unfollow.
    4) Does it bother me that some w/ whom I’ve engaged don’t follow me back? Of course. Will I reach out and ask them to correct their egregious oversight, wink wink? Doubtful unless it just happened in conversation.
    5) See also #3. I don’t expect reciprocation and it’ll depend. It’s MY choice to stay on their blogs or follow them on Twitter; if they’ve shared something I’ve found valuable, they did they’re job .. the rest is a gift. Now I prefer more engagement as my style and have taken a harder, closer look at those who ‘ignore’ my comments, RTs, blog. Some I’ve moved on but not all, mileage will vary.

    Another damn fine post Bill and bonus points!!! for the links and intro to Ashley. How did I NOT know there was a ‘Middle Finger Project’ blog?! That is so in my wheelhouse, so thanks for sharing that. FWIW.

  24. Griddy did a post about non-social media sites to check out and she featured Ashley and Erika at RedHeadWriting.com; they can certainly bring it and will say ANYTHING…….

    Early on it was important to me just to at least have a face people can see; but I really thought it was too ‘stiff’ looking. Like you, I was just never pro-active enough to do anything about it.

    I think I have a better feel for what a slight is these days and I will certainly call someone out still; and if they want to tell me otherwise I will listen. However, there is NOBODY in here, I don’t care how much they think their doodie doesn’t stink, I will call them out albeit in a respectful way.

    That was cool I finally figured up how to link; John F offered to help but Shonali actually sent me an e-mail on how to do it and I was good to go from there.

    Good to see you and no carpet bombing necessary; it’s been a long day.

    I hope the rest of your week goes well.

  25. Hi Bill,

    I have done all the mistakes you have, and then some. About the avatar, I think it looks great. To me, the most important part of the avatar is that it’s actually a picture of you. If it’s not your best picture, it doesn’t matter, as long as it’s how you look (or at least close to how you look). I’ve seen so many avatars of logos and funny cartoons or whatever, to me, the avatar represents you and should be you.

    I’m still not using Social Media the right way, although I believe that I understand how to use it. The problem for me is to engage in a conversation. I feel that I am doing too many things at once, and most of my conversations ends up being two or three replies and that’s it. So, I am sort of engaging, and I am being social, but it always stops too fast. At least that’s my opinion.

    What about you? Are you having long conversations via social media, or two – three replies like me?

    • I was going to try to find a high school picture for my Avatar, but that might be going too far back…..:).

      I prefer the face because it’s more personal; however, once you get in and start engaging with someone it doesn’t seem to matter as much. I just felt like mine was a little too ‘formal’ and didn’t match up w/ my persona.

      My replies are typically longer because I do put thought into it (another time eater), but the back and forth on a single post are typically shorter in nature.

      I don’t know if it’s sustainable, but I definitely want to stop by and visit the people who come see me. There are 3-4 sites I visit that don’t typically come by my place, but I will hang with them as long as I can. Because of this, I do have long conversations with quite a few people.

      I’m trying to come up w/ a sustainable model and what that looks like and I feel I’m pretty close to doing so.

      Good to see you today and hope all is well.

  26. Hi, Bill.

    You are becoming more human to my eyes. 😉 Since the start, I have always seen you as having a superpower of being in the right places at always the right time. I saw you as someone who has cornered the market on being social.

    But, with this post, I see that you are as human as I am. I worried over my Gravatar picture, too. (I like your picture though, even if it does make you look a bit formidable, which is not a bad thing) But, it is the best I was able to put forward when I read that it is best to have a Gravatar when commenting on people’s blogs. I thought that as long as people can see my smiling face that would already be enough. I am thinking of getting a better picture to replace the one I am using now though.

    I also followed the wrong people when I started on Twitter just because they were in the real estate and architecture fields. But, I learned just recently that it is better to follow people you have a connection with.

    Thanks for sharing this, Bill. Your candor is always so refreshing and provides a great deal of value for many of us.

    Enjoy your week! 🙂

    • You have a great picture; it’s very flattering and inviting, people see that and feel welcome. I too had heard the face was the main thing so I drug out the only picture I had that would format right for twitter. I just felt the ‘dressed up’ look was a little too formal.

      I followed a lot of ‘wrong’ people; it was all one way dialogue and they weren’t interested in engaging. That’s what took me so long to finally figure out what this was all about.

      I will probably take the opposite approach you did and will now start to strategically align myself w/ selected niches related to my field but I have no intention whatsoever to give up the social crowd.

      Superpower, huh? You must have seen the S under my shirt……………….:). If you only knew……yes, the social I could do and that was about as deep as I got. It has created a few holes in my platform, but I’d rather have the people and figure out the rest later.

      Hope that back gets better soon and hope you have a great day; good to see you.

      • Hi, Bill.

        I don’t think anyone will miss that huge S under your shirt. 🙂 And those holes you created, they are just small pieces of kryptonite and could easily be overcome. Even the SuperSocialMAn that you are would have to go experience those kryptonite moments to get stronger. 🙂

        I’m having myself fitted for a back support, so I can bypass the recommended bed rest and continue working. So, with that, my life’s good…drugged with painkillers, but definitely good. 🙂

    • Back injuries are a mystery at times; whereas it hurts to do anything, sometimes bed rest doesn’t seem to make it better. Unless it is totally debilitating I try to do more instead of less. I will roll around on the ground and try to stretch it out, make sure I get up and about and move around, etc, etc. But I guess it also depends on the root cause and if you even physically able to do this.

      I feel for you; I know you must be miserable. Good luck on your recovery.

      Also, thanks so much for your kind words of support. You made me feel like I was somebody…….:)

      Have a great day.

  27. Hey Bill,

    First time visitor to your blog, via ingrid’s nittygritty blog (give credit where it’s due!)

    I really liked your post. So simple, personal, a bit refreshing in my opinion.

    Love that gravatar picture! .. i also used and still use the first picture I was able to find that looked decent..

    I feel you on leaving comments on other blogs and wondering if those people will ever engage my own. Even 1-2 meaningful comment on my blog from a fellow blogger truly can make my day!

    i’ll be roaming around your blog more. hope to engage more in the future.

    • Hello Paul, I’m glad you are here via Griddy; I had no idea she was going to do the (s)talker post on me, but it doesn’t surprise me. She’s the real deal and about as genuine as they come. That’s definitely a good group to hang around.

      I just got tired of the ‘formal’ look but never took the initiative to change it. Probably not a big deal, but I just didn’t feel it matched my persona on line.

      I’m glad you like the post as most of them are pretty simple. At some point I will pick up the pace but for now I’m ok with just building community.

      I will definitely come by your place and certainly appreciate you stopping by here. I hope your journey has been a good one so far.

  28. I believe we have all been through a number of the mistakes you mentioned at one time or another, Bill. I followed all the wrong people when I started my Twitter strategy as well. In fact, I am even guilty of using one of those software that automatically follows people just so I could have a lot of them follow me back. Serves me right though because I had to weed out a lot of spammers and other unsavoury characters. Until now, I am still in the process of weeding out my Twitter. Considering the number of people I followed, it is not quite an easy task. But, I am getting there.

    • That’s funny Wes; I’m sure if I would have been savvy enough I would have tried the software as well. When I first jumped in, I thought it was all about the numbers; similar to Facebook. Because I’m out and about so much I seem to pick up 3-4 new people a day. I’m guessing at least 1-2 of those got to me through an automated system. I still don’t have a huge number, so I probably don’t need to weed out yet.

      I haven’t actively tried to seek out anybody to follow lately, but going forward as I try to align myself w/ a few niches I’m interested in hopefully I can be smart about it now.

      Good to see you today Wes and hope all is well in your world. It’s good to see you over here and your support and engagement is very much appreciated. Thanks……….

  29. This was hilarious, Bill, in a really good way! =) Thanks for bringing humor to the picture. I am in love with your writing style.

    You know, I don’t mind your first avatar so much because it’s professional. It would probably work if you were looking for clients, don’t you think? Although it’s true that the more relaxed and natural smiles in the photo on your sidebar and currently connected to your Twitter account are more charming! =)

    When I first started with Twitter at the beginning of this year, I was really confused about those that didn’t reciprocate as well. We’d have wonderful conversations, but they’re never follow back! =) I’m learning to let it go now and I’ve used that tactic once in a while — the mention that I tried to DM! =)

    As for blog commenting, I get very few comments from Tweeps I know. Most blog comments come from commenting tribes and Facebook groups. Have you tried these options? =)

    Thanks for a stellar post! =) Loved getting to know you better!

    • Well, the compliments are certainly appreciated.

      When you say people you know, I get no comments from people I know in real life. A little over a month ago Ari Herzog did a feature on me and I had a couple of local people show up, but typically my commenters are people I have gotten to know online.

      As you can see, obviously I get a fair amount of traffic; but at times I’m more curious as to the ones who don’t show up. But like I say in rule # 5; if you feel you are doing all the heavy lifting and getting nothing in return, then just move on.

      This can certainly be a peculiar world and the more I try to analyze it, the more I just need to keep it really simple and not get worked up over the little things.

      The door was opened for me, I came in and developed a community and now it is up to me to do my own thing I suppose.

      So good to see you and I will certainly support you any way I can. Best of luck to you on your journey.

      • Actually, same here, Bill! When I say “people I know,” I refer to people I’ve developed relationships with online through Facebook or email.

        I love how you bring up the idea of letting go of the little things. =) What a great life lesson! =)

        Thanks for the support, Bill! I’ll definitely be looking out to support you as well! =)

  30. I gotta tell you, Bill it’s intimidating to wade into the fray here on your blog. Tons of comments to get through until I can have my little say. By the time I get down here, well, it’s all been said!

    I love what Nancy Myrland, Mimi Meredith, John Falchetto, the JackB, Jk and countless others have to say on the subject. It’s all what you put into it and what you make of it. If you put a lot into it, I know you get a lot in return. If you don’t, you don’t.

    I like to think the relationships that I’ve built here online are strong ones and that if I don’t stop by to comment each time, it’s not because I didn’t want to, it’s because I have run out of time on my little clock that tells me it’s time to step away from the computer. Her name is Livi and she’s very demanding. She’s in the bath tub now singing an Adele song acapella and carrying it off quite nicely.

    Love your posts, Bill. Love your enthusiasm for it all and I admire your loyalty and commitment greatly.
    Best of the best to you.
    Erica

    • Hey you, good to see you today.

      For some reason I can’t seem to reply in short, succinct responses which tends to increase the length of these things. I am glad you took the time to read some of them, there was good input I thought.

      I will tell you, it still surprises me to see this but I’m going to quit trying to second-guess or downplay any of it. Yes, I am very happy people stop by and feel comfortable enough to leave a comment.

      Part of me wants to stay in the exploring, exciting stage and still making innocent mistakes but the other part wants to be beyond that and not let the little things that still make me go ‘hmmmmm’ enter into it. On the surface, I don’t want to sweat the small stuff but I still have plenty of ‘why’ questions that will just go left unsaid for now.

      Whereas I can appear as just a surface type guy, I can over-think things at times.

      Yes, I said I would do a guest post for you; talk about a spotlight…………..:). If I keep putting it off it will never get done so I will produce something w/in the next 10 days and if you feel it is worth using you can; and knowing you like to tell it like it is, if you think it is an anchor feel free to file 13 it.

      Your story about Livi was very cute. My boys are grown but we still have pictures of them that age on the ‘fridge. Good times indeed.

      Good luck going forward and I hope you find the right ‘balance’ to make all this work for you and have fun doing it.

  31. Hi Bill,
    This is not a post just about social media. It’s about rejection and real life as well.
    I have realized some time ago, that I just can’t sleep with every chick in town, neither possible or practical:)
    Very enjoyable post, very fun to read. I laughed at your picture “issue”. Maybe, actually, you shouldn’t change it. Why to always conform?
    Rock on, cool stuff!!!!!!
    Derek

    • I hadn’t thought of it that way, but you are right it is about rejection and what is acceptable and what is not. Also, is the acceptance level different w/in the walls of social media vs in real life. Finally, when you are taking it personally is it really about you anyway?

      My biggest issue w/ the pic was the fact it looked ‘to formal’. Here I am in yucking it up w/ everyone and at least in my mind the pic did not match the persona. However, that is how I dress for work but typically not w/ the coat.

      Good to see you Derek, hope all is well for you and I appreciate you coming by. Hope you have a great weekend planned.

  32. Hi Bill, Another great post! I think the problem with Twitter mistakes (and we all make them initially) is that they’re so public. It’s not like Facebook where only your understanding friends make the mistakes. I mean look at the former congressman. Our mistakes aren’t as bad as his, Right? Right? :-0

    I had someone DM me today on Twitter and had to tweet back that they weren’t following me. Just an oversight that was corrected. Good thing because I am bumping up against my 2K limit on following. What if I promised Twitter I’m not a spammer?

    I like your avatars! Maybe i could use one of your avatars for my account on Twitter, perhaps that would get me more followers?

    Thanks for making me smile while enlightening me. Have a great weekend!

    • I don’t know if the Avatars will help; maybe if you put my mug up there and promise everybody I will pay the $1 for every legitimate follower you get?

      My mistakes pale in comparison to Mr Weiner (appropriate name, huh?).

      I followed someone a couple of days ago because I see him at the same places I go. I got a DM last night welcoming me and he told me all about himself. He asked about me so I DM’d him back and guess what? He just replied but hadn’t followed me. Oh well, he knows where to find me………

      Oh well, eventually we will figure it out, huh? So good to see you today.

    • I just noticed one of her recent posts was pimpin’ a book for a pretty good price. I hope she has success with it, but probably out of my range; especially since she still doesn’t do a good job on the social side (you might or might not get a response on your comment). Not knocking her if she’s successful at what she does, but yes, I am a real person here and if it’s not worth replying to my comment, doesn’t give me much buy-in……..just sayin’…….

    • You make a good point Mike. You definitely need to speak to your audience and sometimes w/ a niche it could be very narrow indeed.

      Thanks for taking time to weigh in on the subject.

  33. Well, gosh Bill, where do I start?

    First of all, I am so happy to finally have a moment to say hi – “hi!” 🙂

    I really can’t say that I’ve found a blog yet where I haven’t noticed your face somewhere in the comments – you do get around. So it’s fitting that you give the rest of us some pointers on how to get comfortable with the sometimes “uncomfortable” phases of this crazy, fun, addicting and sometimes frustrating thing called social media.

    I feel like you’re spelling out all the feelings I’ve experienced at times over the past year as I’ve navigated my way through the world of blogging, twitter and facebook. I’ve had a few false starts (blogging in the wrong niche, visiting dead forums, mass following people who weren’t responsive at all), but I feel like things are starting to make a lot more sense.

    I’m still a bit disappointed with some connections that seem to be one-sided, but I’m so glad I read this post because it reminds me not to take these things so personally AND that just, as in life…I don’t have to stick it out. If I feel like there’s no chemistry or interaction I can always move on. There are a gajillion blogs out there, with more being creating everyday. Surely, if we keep at it, there’s “right people” out there for all of us.

    I have to say though, I love that you’re willing to keep reaching out to get to the bottom of why someone is not reciprocating the connection. Clearly you’re a great communicator.

    Engaging in social media is definitely a commitment, and I’m starting to realize that in order to build solid community, efforts have to be a bit more concentrated, and less scattered – I mean, there’s no way that I could get through all the blog posts in my reader (hundreds) AND have conversations on Twitter and Facebook.

    Plus I want the time I spend online to feel worth it, and not like I’m writing and reaching out in a vacuum.

    So, I do understand why some people may not reciprocate – there’s just not enough time in the day to reach everyone online. I just need to take a page from the book of great connectors like you and many others I’ve been watching and focus on doing what I do, continuing to connect as much as I can (and not worry about when I can’t), then let the rest fall into place.

    Thanks for some good food for thought this weekend Bill, and nice to finally “meet” you! 🙂

    • Nice to meet you to ma’am; and I’m glad you took the time to not only stop by but leave an incredible reply.

      I will tell you a little secret since it’s just me and you talking here and this is the internet so it’s not like this stuff is out here forever; I still do take it personal in a way but I’m doing a much better job of moving on. I mean the root of all this, we all want to be liked, heard and acknowledged, right?

      I know I have to branch out if I want to meet new people, but as long as I can sustain it I will always support the people who come by here first.

      Yes, you see me out and about at quite a few places and I certainly see who is where. I will reach out a few times, but if the feeling isn’t mutual it is certainly up to me if I keep engaged with them or not.

      I can tell you, if you keep leaving thoughtful comments like this it will certainly bring attention.

      I will certainly stop by and check you out; please feel free to see who is here and engage with them as well. I am very happy with my community, they are good people.

      I hope your weekend is going well.

  34. Hi Bill,

    I have done some of these things you mention. My Twitter picture is horrible. I am not photogenic and that is as good as it gets. )

    I think i can be very guilty of wanting to comment on something, then the phone rings, an email comes in, blah, blah, blah…

    I guess I need to also separate those I know post everyday from those who don’t (so I remember to look for the new stuff)

    I can take myself very seriously at times. Yet other times I act like a clown. 🙂 Many people have been extremely nice to me (you included)

    So anyway, I need to make a “commenting schedule” so I can keep myself on track.

    • You always put a smile on my face when you stop by, it’s always a pleasure to see you.

      My point w/ the Avatar, it was just so formal. If you’ve seen my comments, I can be pretty silly so in my mind it just felt like a disconnect w/ the picture vs the persona. Probably more of me just thinking too much on things that don’t really matter, huh?

      We are both at a lot of the same places and I certainly want to support my friends as much as possible. However, the daily posts……cough, cough…..means I might not be able to see someone everyday. Yes, I use my Google Reader as my scheduler and get to who I can time permitting.

      On a personal note, I really like your stuff. And trust me, I’m still new enough at this I am certainly not one to advise anybody. HOWEVER, it you posted 2-3 times a week it sure would give people more time to stop by…………………..just sayin’…………………:).

      Good to see you today, thanks for taking the time to say hello and hope you are having a great weekend.

    • Crazy stuff, huh. I’ve had two posts hit 100 and those are the only two posts Elyse from above commented on. I think I found my ‘secret sauce’………..:).

      Hope your run and your day went well.

  35. Hi Bill,

    You have provided some nice tips to all “social media” enthusiasts. As with the real world, friendships in the online world too take time to blossom and we should be patient in that case also.

    Thanks for sharing.
    Ashvini

  36. Bill! Love the new avatar! You look like a million bucks!

    As for following celebs on Twitter, I did that too when I first started. This was back in 2008 when I signed up. I hardly used it for a couple years. I didn’t talk to anyone. Just followed these celebs. When I started really using Twitter in Feb, I still had these celebs in addition to new people I started to follow. I noticed over time that the celebs in my Twitter stream really didn’t help me out. I didn’t need to follow them. I took out most of them and don’t miss what they’re saying.

    It’s definitely more fun talking with real people instead of trying to get someone with a million followers to acknowledge you.

    Hope you’re having a great holiday weekend!

  37. Hello Benny, hope you and the family are have a happy 4th; thanks for dropping by.

    Celebs, athletes & politician’s, I thought that was what twitter was all about. That’s probably the quickest way for you to lose interest and quit using it, huh?

    It was the people w/ blogs that got me interested which surprised me because I never thought I be reading blogs (much less writing one too). However, I quickly realized that was where all the ‘action’ was.

    I’ve enjoyed it and hope you are too. It’s good to see you around.

  38. OH BILL! Your magnificent writing style is a majestic piece of literature unknown to the human heart before those glorious minutes of me breathing in those breath taking words. You are a gentleman and a scholar, and you arouse me to a point of uncontrolled happiness. You sir, are a saint.

    • It was pretty spectacular, wasn’t it?………………..Ha, now your are just pullin’ my leg. However, I will be linking a PEO article in my next post that will be published tomorrow. Hopefully it will bring you some attention.

      Thanks for taking the time to stop by.

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