What Was the First Tweet of Forbes Top 20 Women Social Media Influencers?

Twitter was launched in 2006, and no one ever guessed back then that how Twitter will change the world hashtag-by-hashtag. Before Twitter, the # key was little more than something found on Imagetelephones to denote “number”.

Whether you are new to Twitter or a seasoned pro, #FirstTweet got everyone going for sure. Just like Twitter users, Twitter has also evolved enormously in the last eight years. To celebrate this journey and success with its users, it has just released, a fun tool to help you discover your first tweet.

Twitter has concreted itself as a digital soapbox, and women seem to have taken it way too easily. Recently Forbes published The Top 20 Women Social Media Influencers which intrigued me about the first tweet of these influences so here you go:

  1. Ann Tran
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  2. Jessica NortheyImage
  3. Mari Smith
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  4. Liz Strauss
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  5. Pam Moore
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  6. Renee Blodgett 

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  7. Eve Mayer
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  8. Kim Garst
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  9. Lori Ruff
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  10. Ann Handley
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  11. Pam Dyer
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  12. Laura Fitton – Co-author of Twitter for DummiesImage
  13. Bonnie SainsburyImage
  14. Lilach BullockImage
  15. Deborah Lee
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  16. Marsha CollierImage
  17. Lori Taylor
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  18. Viveka von RosenImage
  19. Sandi KrakowskiImage
  20. Susan CooperImage

Hope it was fun for you, please share with your friends and followers. Feel free to leave comments, questions or suggestions. All feedback is welcomed.

Sources:

Forbes: The Top 20 Women Social Media Influencers 

 

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Top Tips for Brands Looking to Leverage the Twitter’s New Functionality

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So now when you are familiar with the new exciting features of Twitter, time to look at some effective ways of applying them. If you missed my previous post, click here What’s New to twitter?

Twitter will start rolling out the new change to Profile Pages to the users over the next few weeks. In the interim, it’s a good time for brands to start thinking about how they will leverage this new . Here are some tips to help get you started:

  1. Plan Your New Profile and Cover Images: There is no better time than now to begin designing and developing your new cover photo and profile image to meet the new Twitter requirements. Twitter recommends dimensions for the header photo of 1500px in width × 500px in height.
  2. Offer Specials with Pinned Tweets: You now have the chance to feature a specific tweet at the top of your profile page to let new visitors get a fuller sense of who you are and what your profile is entirely more or less. One thing for brands to consider is featuring a tweet that offers an exclusive piece of content to visitors. For example, feature a tweet that offers a case study, white paper, infographic or eBook to help get visitor engagement.
  3. Use the Mobile Features for Photo Sharing: Tagging multiple people and posting multiple photos is a great way for brands to better engage with their audience. Consider posting multiple photos that illustrate a story or message to your audience and tag individuals that you think would appreciate the message.
  4. Larger Profile Image: The larger profile image on the new version of Twitter gives users more real estate to set the tone of their page. Consider changing profile photos on an ongoing basis to help keep users coming back.
  5. Make your Photos Count: This new version of Twitter places a deep emphasis on photos and video. Publish photos that are eye catching and entertaining. This will help to increase engagement when visitors choose to filter your tweets using the photo/video filter.

Finally, brands can expect to see more changes from Twitter in the not-so-distant future. Just last week, Vivian Schiller, Twitter’s head of new partnerships shook the “twitterverse” by suggesting that hashtags and @replies are “arcane” and could possibly be a thing of the past. When asked to clarify the remarks, Twitter representatives had this to say: “By bringing the content of Twitter forward and pushing the scaffolding of the language of Twitter to the background, we can increase high-quality interactions and make it more likely that new or casual users will find this service as indispensable as our existing core users do. And we took initial steps in that direction with the introduction of media forward timelines and in-line social actions in October, and we’re already starting to see early signs that those initiatives are working well.”

What do you think about the new changes to twitter? Are you, or your brand, looking forward to them?

Is your Twitter dressed to the nines?

Resolutions fail because they are vague, they can be easily achieved if we pin down the actions rather than the goal itself. Most common and apt business resolution is to optimise the Twitter Profile this year, and here’s my new year gift to you all. An action packed list to help you achieve this goal:

1)    Stitch in time saves nine
How secure is your password? Test it here http://howsecureismypassword.net “Change is good” and a periodic change for your password is a security mandate. Can I ask when was the last time you changed your Twitter or any frequently used account password? Ah! I can imagine your wide-opened eyes and dropped jaw for your own answer.

2)    Would YOU follow you?
Check your profile often and keep questioning yourself.  I am sure your profile looks great, it is recommended to enliven it every now and then. How about reviewing your design settings now and refreshing it. https://twitter.com/settings/design This is a wonderful feature. You can even customise the design based on an upcoming event of your business.

3)    Is your Bio up-to-date? 
You were on the drawing board last summer and revised your business’s profile to be in sync with your expanded line of product, services and the new goals. It should reflect accurately at your social footprints as well just like your employee book, website and all the policies. Time to review your twitter bio and re-write, if required.  https://twitter.com/settings/profile

4)    Give it a little swirl
This is an appropriate time to review the people you are following. Unfollow the ones you just started following in the flow, start following a few new and keep the mix right. Twitter profile health checks offered by “Twitter Counter” can be a good place to start.

5)    Get better with a Bitly account
Twitter automatically shortens URLs for you when you compose a tweet. But they use their own shortened and that doesn’t give you any access to the statistics that you may essentially need. Some Twitter interfaces let you to connect to Bitly and that way you can always go back to that site to see which URLs did good.

6)    Get an app
The web interface of Twitter is fine, however its helpful to have an app for your smart devices and see if it helps you operate your social world more effectively. HootSuite, TweeDeck, TweetCaster, Scheduling, managing different accounts and platform at once, statistics are some features of these apps and interfaces that can help you achieve your goals and carve your content and twitter strategy.

7)    Pull the plug for all unwanted apps
This is yet another very important security arena we often miss. The number of apps you have given permission to do mostl everything they want on your account. The number will surely surprise you. Some might still be appropriate, but there might be a few you tested once and never used even for a second time. They are better off if disconnected. https://twitter.com/settings/applications

8)    Flourish with more Followers
Never stop announcing your presence, the excitement and efforts should be as fresh as when you had just started on Twitter. Mention your Twitter handle in your email signature, contact page, sidebar of your blog, Google+ page, LinkedIn profile.. at every social footprint of yours. Are your employees aware of your social footprints? You could be losing on a ready to use followers base. Don’t leave any stone unturned. Employee handbook, newsletter, sen an email to the employees and your customers with a friendly reminder that you are active on Twitter and a few instructions on how to follow you. Try making it visible at the entrance to your office.

9)    Love is a universal language
Twitter wouldn’t be Twitter without the engagements between tweeps. Show some love to your followers and keep the conversation on. Retweets, replies and the stars keep tweeps connected and a bit of the mention goes a long way.

With the above and a few tips from my previous post, your social footprints will shine with the glory.

14 must-dos to improve your social impression in 2014

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Just like you I was totally tempted to surrender to the bubbly, mulled wine, cookies and cakes so I started with the yearly housekeeping and just then it occured to me that I am meant to do the yearly tidying to my social as well.

Well whilst you decorate your Christmas tree and warm up for the New Year cheer, this is a suitable time to do a little social media housekeeping. Here are top 14 stars to add glamour and sturdiness to your social cheer. Get them all done and you’ll enter the New Year with a stronger base.

  1. Verify your Google profile – Google+ made colossal progress this year. You can try some simple updates. If you haven’t already, customize your URL so your company page is legitimate and easier to find and share.
  2. Tarot card readings didn’t fetch you well this year? Try Twitter Cards? Well I find Twitter’s Lead Generation Cards very promising. They allow you to collect leads directly from tweets. Christmas is a great time to try new things, and these have no form for users to fill in – cherry on the top, isn’t it?
  3. Fine tune your content – Now is a good time to review all the content shared and plan ahead. Be creative. Experiment!
  4. Take a Google Analytics course – No business is complete without acumens. Insights is everything. Google analytics course will be a true investment of your time and money, well only the time as it’s free now.
  5. A lot can happen over LinkedIn –Sponsored Updates allow businesses to promote any post from their company page directly into a specific demographics’ news feed. Give it a go.
  6. Be the “Titleholder” – Had a good social 2013? Highlight your work with internal staging, newsletter and creative comms using Vine, videos, infographics. Celebrate your social triumph!
  7. “My father taught me many things … keep your friends close, but your enemies closer.” (Yes, I was watching “Godfather” last night. Yes, Again!)Take a few steps back and get the wider view of the marketplaces. Understand what worked well for your competitors and what didn’t. Learn and take notes to fin-tune your social strategy.
  8. Play with video – Now you can create and edit videos on the Instagram app as well as photos. And what’s more, these videos outdo the 6 second restriction of Vine, so it’s worth testing which platforms work best for you.
  9. Get on the right side of the law – The legal systems of any nation wasn’t  made with social in mind so they have had to adapt. Get better prepared for legislation in 2014. An appropriate time to refresh and brush the legal knowledge. Research time!
  10. Re-state your statement  – Once you’re aware of the legal risks, you’ll no doubt want to get your housekeeping in order. Re-draft your social policy; it should cover everything from changing passwords to protecting the company against liability caused by your workforce. Many free and reliable workbooks are available online.
  11. Sieve and revive – Get rid of the channels which are not suited for your business and re-focus your efforts on active platforms.
  12. Surf the net for inspiration – This is a great time to do a bit of research. Some casual surfing can land you with great ideas for the next twelve months. Start by checking out what competitors have been up to!
  13. Social also needs some “alone-time”  – While business is not that chaotic and busy, reflect upon the risks and vulnerabilities in social. What worked for you and where could you improve? How will you go about making change? Who else in your company could you tempt with cake to get some guidance?
  14. Before you get Christmassy – Before you pour that drink to your success, plan the social media content and dispenser during the holidays. There should be Christmas in the virtual world as well. Isn’t it?

Wish you all a very merry Christmas and a happier 2014!

Is your emotional leadership instinct inexplicably bottled-up?

Individual leaders also face a fabricated dichotomy to forge their identity as a rigorous, results-oriented tyrant or be a nurturing, naive softy who doesn’t meet targets. In some settings, an individual leader is perceived as powerful and effectual only if they are unemotional.

Contrary to the expectation that leaders can emulate machines, positions of power are actually centres of intense emotional experience; responsibility, loyalty, and trust are major concerns in the mind of a leader. Nonetheless, the business climate has favoured delegitimizing such emotional considerations.

“The instinct of a spectacular leader is to have emotional awareness of those around him in order to support the requirements for long-term company success.

“Today, this leadership instinct is suppressed.”

Time to wake up to the value and rewards of allowing emotion into your leadership practices, your workplace behaviour and your brand’s presence.

Not a replacement for your business strategies. But rather an additional element to what you do.

Nurturing vs. Building Community In Social

Community is the holy grail of Social media. Without community, there is no social. Mind you, if your focus is not right then you may just miss the bull’s eye by a thin line or shall I say a thin curve (Ah! I have been working out so I can mention ‘thin’ and ‘curves’ now)

Well if you’re thinking building a community is nothing but just a number game then yes, you are not wrong. Please note, I am saying “your aren’t wrong”. Members can be bought. Yes, they can be bought. Paid media, contests, promotions, etc. There are many ways. Principally, you can only buy the “Building” for your community. And, these numbers may or may not be necessary. Sometimes enormous followers can get you credibility. Sometimes it creates a base for future nurturing however I personally believe that there’s always a start and start is always with ‘1’ or shall we say ‘0’. I would say start with a clear purpose and members or followers for your community will come automatically. Do not worry much about the number game when you make a start. So now if you’re thinking that building a community is about quality numbers, you’re right. Please note, now I am saying “You’re right”.

Well you will find all social media practitioners saying this a lot, do something with your community because until you will do something worthwhile with your “big strength” they are nothing but just the false weights and you’re just spending a lot of energy to just ‘look’ good. The key is to ‘feel’ good and not just ‘look’ good. (Ah! It’s evident that girl is struggling to give in to some vino and Macaroons. Of course, it is. What on the earth ‘feel’ ‘look’ good jazz has to do with the Community Building!)

Believe you me, with this social media week coming up, I get to meet many CMOs / Digital Officers / Social Media Practitioners (more than I anticipated) who said to me: “I just want to have more followers for my company than my golf buddy’s company.” (Sadly, they weren’t joking).

Well let’s cut the humour now and submit some sense. (Did I just sense a grin here? Well! In my defence, my cocktail buddies laugh on my most one liners and a bit later, on all ) Yes, back to the topic now. I submit an idea: Nurture a community; don’t just build it. Nurturing a community means you encourage interactions, create engagements. Create an environment of communication (Let me say it for the last time, there is only one way to have communication i.e. ‘two-way’ communication). You need to get people talking. Maybe not talking with your brand, but sometimes simply talking with each other. Remember Entertain, Express, Express, Enable!

Nurturing a community means you are providing utility, usefulness and support for your community. When you articulate, it may sound little but in the practical world there’s a big difference between A presence and to HAVE a presence.

Look at it this way, if you can raise the community is an indicator on whether you should even be spending time in a social community or not. Can you get members talking? Can you get members engaging? Can you get members to act?

If not, you may like to consider other advertising options. Email marketing and other traditional methods that may have given you ROIs in the past.

Ask! Listen! Understand! Engage!

Before you give up on your ‘Building’, try this:

  • ASK! Ask your community a question where the answer sincerely impacts your business decisions.
  • Listen! Open ears will help you identify an opportunity where you can help your community and win their loyalty and trust. Go an extra mile wins hearts in social world too.
  • Understand! Understand the contribution and efforts made by members. Give them the limelight and show gratitude for their contributions.
  • Engage! Get people talking and create engagements. Host meet-ups, Q&A. Trivia Questions on a launch. Ways are many.

The essence of social community is same as the ‘house’ and ‘home’ theory. Everyone prefers a place to connect and not just the lumps of concrete hence nurture your ‘Building’ to a ‘Community’.

If you have done something similar in your business, please share your story. If you want to try this and still not sure how to go about it, feel free to leave your question.

Give your B2B Sales a Boost with LinkedIn groups

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If you’re not a believer yet that Linked is a key networking tool, this shouldn’t be your first read. You will benefit better if you read this one first: LinkedIn is 10 today!

I guess now you are ready for this one.

LinkedIn is an essential networking platform for all businesses, just a little bit more for B2B. Marketing plan for any business isn’t complete without the salt of maintaining the LinkedIn presence. The Groups feature of LinkedIn has proven ROI for B2B sales. Taking advantage of this feature provides the potential to get your brand in front of a lot more people than relying only on your company page. If you haven’t already gotten involved in Groups, here are a few LinkedIn tips to get you started and give you a boost in sales.

Direct participation is the right participation

Active participation in your group means that you will attract more prospects. Future customers feel much more confident about brands that are obviously invested in their clients’ experiences and opinions. Express your interest from the get-go by setting up automated messages to send to LinkedIn users who join your group, giving them a warm welcome and inviting them to contact you freely with any questions or comments. Think of your members as prospective clients or customers. When they have questions, answer them promptly to exemplify the type of timely, quality service you provide for your clients.

Create engagaments, Communication should always be two-ways
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Encourage group members to get involved too. Keeping members tactfully engaged is the key. You will want to provide topics of discussion from time to time, but it’s also important to let group members lead a good number of discussions. This shows potential members that you are interested in what they have to say. Instead of seeing a veer of topics provided by you with a list of responses from members, they will see a group full of members engaging in interesting discussion with useful information. Make sure you participate in member-led discussions as well. Again, you want your members to know that you value them and their viewpoints. You can only demonstrate it by showing interest in the discussions led by them.

Be the leader in all ways

While member participation is key crucial to the success of your group, you must ensure that activity within the group is appropriate, informative, and doesn’t annoy current or prospective members. For instance, say there is a member who is constantly posting messages for self-promotion. This kind of spamming can get very old, very fast. When group discussions are littered with promotional jargon, people get bored and sometimes annoyed, which means they might possibly leave the group. If there are members who are acting inappropriately or posting the same things over and over again just to get their names out there, turn to them privately and let them know that their behavior isn’t conducive to the group’s purpose. Always take the responsibilities of the group leader just like you would do in real-life. Keep an eye on the activities in your group and moderate them judiciously.

Keep Content Relevant

People join groups for a reason. They are interested in a certain topic and either want to be involved in discussion on said topic or just get as much information and advice as they can from the sidelines. Therefore, only relevant content should be posted to your group. The best thing about groups is that you’ve got a ready-made audience there for the taking—possible future clients or customers who are interested in your topic and have joined your group voluntarily. These folks are there to read information that pertains to the category under which your group falls. You should act like a content police, don’t post (or allow others to post) anything that might digress from relevant subject matter.

Search for Leads

In addition to managing your group, you should also be looking for prospective members that could turn into clients. LinkedIn now has an Advanced People Search, which is extremely useful in farming for a specific group of people. For example, you can search for people who have a specific job title, such as CFO, or perhaps those who run companies with specific number of employees. LinkedIn helps you find the precise audience you have always desired but never knew how to contact. Inviting these people to join your groups will give them a preview of what they can expect from you and your company.

Advertise

LinkedIn now has an advertising feature. It is a paid feature, but the cost is comparable to Facebook’s ad feature, and the possibility of reaching your target audience is greater. The Groups feature allows your ad to be placed front and center on the pages of a group. For example, you can specify that you want an ad to be visible to members of corporate real estate groups or inbound marketing groups. These ads are customizable and are written by your company, but they do have to meet certain criteria to be established by LinkedIn.

Participate in Other Groups

In order to integrate your group with your profile and get more exposure, join other people’s groups whose topics fall under the same umbrella as yours. In addition, you might find that you can generate leads within other groups that have nothing to do with your actual business. Joining a group with members who have the same interests as you—sports/food/wine, for example—might give rise to business relationships. Cultivating friendships with like-minded individuals can lead to talk about business, which gives you an opening to see if you can be beneficial to one another in Business-2-Business (B2B) sales.

LinkedIn’s Groups feature has grown by leaps and bounds since it was first introduced, especially where group management is concerned. Many tools have been implemented to help you lead and monitor your group efficiently. Starting a group is easy, but you must be committed to managing it as well. Participation and steadiness are keys if you want your LinkedIn Group to help boost B2B sales.