Follow Friday brings up such mixed feelings for me. While I like catching the names of awesome tweeps to follow, I also know some people (some VERY FAMOUS people) game the hashtag to be at the top of something called Top Follow Friday – or something like that. That combined with the serious traffic clogs and tweets filled with nothing but a list of @’s has made me think seriously about how to best participate in the day.
Lucky me – I have a tribe that is waaayyy smarter than I am. Most of them have started a blog post for their follow friday recommendations that they add to every week. So, that’s what I am going to do, too.
Each week, I’ll add 10 of my favorite people to the list. Yes, I know that isn’t many but I want to be able to write about each person and 10 is about all I can manage.
So here we go:
@JohnHaydon – John is first on my first list because if it weren’t for him, I would never have invested as heavily as I have in Twitter – or social media in general for that matter. John, on top of being a dear friend, is an AMAZING source of information and strategic coaching in how to leverage the power of this virtual community we all inhabit. Plus, he plays great tunes – his own and others – and makes me laugh ALL THE TIME. Oh – and he got me involved in one of my greatest twitter passions – http://www.12for12k.org.
@ginidietrich- Gini is the savviest PR person I know – which is a good thing considering she helms the Chicago PR agency Arment Dietrich. Aside from making me laugh so hard I snort (you’ll notice that laughing is a running theme in my rec’s), Gini also teaches me every single day that taking a hard stand for what I believe in is what passion is all about. She models it in her unwavering believes about the power and the importance of social media in the world of Public Relations. (She also adores my son – the young turk – and that gets her serious bonus points.
@Missive – one blog post isn’t enough room to describe my first Hooligan friend on twitter. If I need cheering up or a serious partner in crime or a good SNORT to shift my perspective, Jen is my go to girlfriend. Smart, savvy, sassy – and an excellent writer to boot, she makes my day – every single day.
@DrMollieMarti- My Rockstar Sister! I am blessed to be co-leading an amazing coaching program with my colleague – and my friend, Mollie. She has a one-two ninja coaching punch that leaves others in the dust (and leaves me in awe). What I love most is that Mollie can pretty much finish each others sentences – a rare thing in my world.
@ColinLewis – my day simply would not be the same without tweets from Colin. Though he lives halfway around the world – in Warsaw – his wisdom lands in my twitter stream at precisely the right moment every single time. Follow him and you will see what I mean. Brilliant mind, gigantic heart – and a solid card carrying member of the Hooligan Tribe.
@AdrianDayton- A super smart lawyer who is on a mission to teach the legal world that Twitter – and all social media – are critical to it’s future. (He is SO smart – that he has a book coming out on that very topic.) And those are VERY good reasons to follow him. But the reason I REALLY follow him is his enthusiastic willingness to support his friends in whatever hairbrained scheme we come up with (TweepleTuesday – he’s in. Trip to Chicago – yep – he’s in!).
@Julito77- Another serious Hooligan – I don’t really know what Julito does – but he and I have the same taste in music (All 80′s, all the time.) Plus, when I need help or support or a really good laugh, I can count on him to deliver. Being able to count on someone – that and making me laugh – get my attention and my loyalty in the Twitterverse!
@lizmarshall- Quite simply, Elizabeth Marshall is the most well connected person I know. She helps people like Seth Godin, Keith Ferazzi and Michael Port launch their books to the top of the bestseller lists – that’s how well connected she is. Plus, she is generous with up and coming authors, too – getting them ready to join the ranks of Seth, Keith and Michael. Oh, and did I mention she is one of my very best friends?! As I say all the time – lucky me!
@launchgum and @trontastic - There is no way to talk about half of this dynamic duo without talking about the other. (Plus I take full credit for creating this comic team!) Both of these guys have BRILLIANT business minds – one created a product from scratch and has taken it to the national playing field. The other knows more about SEO than anyone I can think of. And you’ll just have to check them both out to find out which is which. But what I love about them both is a) they make me laugh even when they aren’t trying to and b) they have HUGE hearts that I admire and aspire to. And I can’t believe I just wrote that somewhere where they can see it!
So, there you have it, my first Follow Friday List! You won’t regret following each and every person here – that I can promise you.
Oh, and check back next Friday, because I’ll be adding more!
Round Two – 7/10/09
This week’s #FollowFriday Tweeps:
@DelWilliams- I remember the first day I connected with @DelWilliams (feels like ages ago). She was teetering on the edge of a rant on the scams that prey on stay-at-home moms. I encouraged her to go for it – which she did – and our friendship has grown everyday since. Del is a smart, funny writer, producer of the video series Twitterville (and wrangler of my virtual twittercrush, Twitter Pete) Insightful and hilarious plus an amazing friend – what more could you want?!
@unmarketing- I was remiss in not including Scott in last week’s list. When I first arrived in the twitterverse lo these many months ago, I had like 12 followers and no idea what I supposed to do to make any of that different. Suddenly, @unmarketing, aka Scott Stratton, decided to make my visibility on Twitter his own personal project. Every day, multiple times a day he highlighted me and my profile and encouraged people to follow me. If it weren’t for his early support, I wouldn’t be here. Though he may have a gruffalump exterior, I’m here to tell you, Scott has a heart of gold.
@fleurdeleigh- Leigh was among my first good twitter girlfriends – her spunk and spirit naturally drew me to her tweets. The uncensored glimpses into her daily life are truly priceless. Oh and here’s the other thing you need to know. She is the uber-talent behind my avatar. I have never in my life gotten so my comments and questions about a photograph of me. The reason it looks the way it looks and I look the way I look is completely due to Leigh and her amazingly creative talent.
@ElizabethPW- I used to call Elizabeth “my legal counsel” when I got into hot twitter debates and needed backup. She was always so good natured about that! Now, I am lucky enough to call her “friend”. Whipass smart, a keen business mind and a sense of humor about herself that makes me spit my coffee every stinkin day are the very best reasons I can think of to follow anyone. Plus, if you happen to be a mompreneur – she’s got one of the edgiest messages out there that you MUST hear.
@CarlaYoung- Carla is the visionary behind the MomEO community. When we met via twitter we both immediately recognized kindred spirits of non-nonsense, tell it like it is mixed with a whacky sense of humor – so it was pretty much Instant Friendship. Then we got to be roomies at the Monster Vegas Tweetup last month. We had to make ourselves stop talking so we could go to sleep at night! Following her makes me happier and smarter – plus I always know she’s game for whatever wild adventure I might cook up!
@Medmarket- Ah – one of the original Hooligans who never fails to make me laugh. I wish I could say I was smart enough to understand his Medical Technology tweets, but I’m not. BUT I am smart enough and wise enough to appreciate a) anyone willing to tangle with @missive and me at the same time (cuz that is no small undertaking) b) a Buffy The Vampire Slayer fan and c) a friend who knows just what to say at precisely the right moment.
@kendallthiessen- There are just so many things to appreciate about Kendall. He’s an inventor (which is waaaay cool in my book) and an attorney (which we don’t talk about). What makes Kendall fascinating to follow is that he is so candid about the journey he is on and he shares it with such ease. Smart, engaging and insightful is enough reason for me to follow someone, But I gotta tell ya, here’s the tweet that he sent yesterday that sealed the Awesome deal for me: “@SarahRobinson I so respect the exhausting job of being mom. Every mom needs lots of support.”
@leesabarnes- How I got lucky enough to be friends with Leesa Barnes I will never know. She is tech and social media savvy (You DO know about her Social Media Telesummit, right?) – plus she SEWS – which I love. Best part? We agree on just about everything and everyone – which means when we talk, we laugh more than we get words out. She is a must follow for anyone who wants to stay ahead of the curve in their online businesses.
@SandyGrason - Have you ever met someone who instantly “gets” you? Well that is exactly what happened when I met Sandy Grason face to face in Los Angeles last fall. And we just keep “getting” each other more and more. J Sandy is one of my favorite mentor-colleagues because she is so down to earth, so comfortable in her own skin and never acts like she has all the answers. Oh – I forgot – she is so much fun and thinks that laughing so hard you spit your coffee out is the ultimate daily goal on twitter. Which is one of the many reasons I love her.
@MichaelPort- I know, I know. Michael is a big-wig famous author and that’s reason enough to follow him, I guess. But it isn’t why I follow him. Tweeting with Michael is like tweeting with my brother. Aside from all the fantastic business knowledge he has to share, tweeting with Michael is like tweeting with my brother. And, because he’s good natured like that, he’s game to play along. A famous person willing to playfully engage – now THERE”S something you don’t see everyday in the twitterverse!
7/17 This week’s Follow Friday Tweeps
@balemar and @aceconcierge- Beatriz and Suzy were among my very first real friends on Twitter. Though we’ve all gotten so busy since those ealy, heady days, seeing them in my tweetstream always makes me smile. They are both uber-smart (read: they know how to get back of the house stuff done!) and always ready to engage in great conversation and even a little fun!
@natslavin- Though I met Nat….what – a year ago? – It’s been twitter that has given such an appreciation for his dry wit and his fantastic taste in music. Oh, and he has one of the keenest business minds of anyone I know. He helps law firms and other service industry firms put their finger on the pulse of client needs. (But I don’t follow him for that, though I probably should. I follow him because he is so stinkin’ funny.)
@dannybrown – Danny is the brains behind the 12for12k movement on Twitter. He has brought together such a diverse, dedicated group of people on twitter to promote great causes, raise money and have a lot of fun along the way. I am honored to be among them I also love watching his technology expertise whiz by too because I always learn something new from him!
@willyouatme (aka Lotay) - another early friend on Twitter. I think I started following him because he played great music via blip.fm. Actually I think he is responsible for my DJ skills. One night he was talking about Pad Thai, so I posted my recipe for it on my blog just for him. Lotay is also dedicated to making the world a better place as he leads the Black Card Circle Charity events. Someday, I’m going to get myself to one of those!!
@tomesimpson – Tom is another one of my friends who, aside from being inspiring in his tweets, always seems to know EXACTLY what to say to me at precisely the right moment. My friendship with him was sealed when I played a Stranglers song on twitter and he had actually heard of them. Plus, he tweets out the greatest pics!
@EntMagazineYou know what I love about @EntMagazine? They don’t just tweet out stories (great stories by the way). They actually engage and participate in conversations that are happening on Twitter. Even conversations they didn’t start! So accessible and so engaging – they get my nod for the best Biz Mag on Twitter.
@AnnEvanston – Ann is a woman after my own heart. Smart, biz-savvy, totally unafraid to be exactly who she is and ALWAYS up for a good laugh. She is one of the few people I know who leaves a comment on EVERY BLOG POST she reads. She’s committed to doing that and I so so admire her for being a woman of her word on it.
@MarionChapsal - a Hooligan if there ever was one! Marion is so authentic and so true to herself – I love watching her tweet about her life – her children and her garden – in France. Artistic and curious with a great sense of humor – she’s also feisty enough to hold her own in any hooligan shenanigan that might be going on.
@AllisonNazarian- I met Allison at the MonsterVegasTweetup and I’m pretty sure it was love at first sight for both of us. Whip-crackin smart with a wit to match, Allison makes me feel sane on my most insane days. She is an amazing writer (we both seriously admire Anne Lamott) and her insights keep me going – even the ones about pizza and Dr. Pepper.
The 8/14 Edition of FollowFriday Peeps
Only five this week – writing 10 is just too intimidating and it makes me not want to do it! So here we go:
@jsandford – I first met Jamie through @ginidietrich (see above) on twitter. He was instantly game to play our kind of games, so I liked him from the start. Today – I got to have lunch with him IRL. And he proved to be even smarter and funnier in person than he is in 140 characters. His marketing savvy is incredible – and he tells funny stories about his kids just like I do!
@RebeccaLange – Rebecca lives on the other side of the world from me – really! And yet – She is there when I wake up and there when I go to sleep. She loves to laugh as much as I do, but don’t let that fool you. She is an amazingly talented writer and can offer just the right words at just the right moment. Follow her and you will see what I mean.
@JeffreySummers – Jeffrey was one of my early friends on twitter. I can’t remember how or why exactly I started following him but I am thinking it had something to do with his awesome taste in music. (And his marketing skills and knowledge are outrageous – inside and outside the restaurant world.)
@amysbryant – Such an inspirational friend. If you follow her, you will feel so lifted up after just reading a few of her tweets. She’s also got some #PlayBig stuff on the horizon that I can not WAIT to watch unfold!
@ChefMax – I don’t know what makes me like Max better – the fact that he is a fabulous chef (I get recipes from him EVERY week!) OR his INCREDIBLE taste in music. And – he’s been a twitter friend for a Looong time.
@theinnermarykay – Mary Kay an Alabama girl just like me – which is reason enough for you to follow her. BUT she is also an incredible business coach who can also get your body fit and peaceful. She also happens to be an amazing friend!
The 8/21 Edition/Addition
At some point I am going to develop a theme for my Follow Friday Editions/Additions, but that day is NOT today!
@AndreaJLee – I’ve know Andrea for four years now – yikes! And in that time she has gone from someone I admire from a distance to a Rock-of-Gibraltar in my business and my life. Saying she is a masterful coach is such a ridiculous understatement – but she really is. If you follow her, lots of small nuggets of wisdom will show up regularly in your tweetstream. And you will thank me for it.
@JonAston – Aside from being of the master architects behind 12for12k ( a twitter project I am passionately involved in!) he is also a brilliant marketing and business strategist. To top it off – he makes an awesome cheerleader. Tweet with him and you’ll see what I mean.
@Sophfronia – Up until a few months ago, Sophfronia was one of the brilliant business women that I wished I was friends with. Then POOF! through the magic of twitter – we connected and guess what/! We ARE friends – Yeah! Sophfronia’s brilliance is helping people write books that promote their businesses. That is reason enough for any entrepreneur to know her. Bt what I like best is that she is learning to apparate – and then she is going to teach me.
@cheth – When I need technical/design help, ideas or inspiration, The first thing I do is mine @chet’s tweets. He pretty much knows EVERYTHING and EVERYONE in those arenas. Plus – he is really really funny. And we all know how important it is to make me laugh, right?
@EdieGalleyThe warm and charming Edie is the host of her own radio show (on a real non-internet station) and an enthusiastic promoter of all things she loves. Somehow (I think) I got on that list. When I need a pick me or a positive nudge or a playmate on Twitter – Edie is always at the ready. Not sure how I got so lucky. Follow her and you will consider yourself lucky, too.
September 4, 2009 Update
@reese - She tops this week’s list because a) she’s a cracker jack – dare I say BRILLIANT designer and 2) She has taken to her new religion of Hooliganism like a duck takes to water. If you follow her, you will laugh your butt off and learn about making your site, blog, manifesto or wahtever, POP!
@Bsimi – You could follow Brian because he is the runs the social media at the Roger Smith Hotel in NYC- and having a contact there is awesome. Or because he is kicking butt and taking names on how EXACTLY a company can leverage social media in a powerful way. But I follow him because a) he spins great tunes all day long and b) from time to time he dedicates one to me.
@ShellyKramer Shelley is a such a kick a** marketing strategist. I love watching and learning from her as she rolls out her particular brand of wisdom on twitter. But I mostly follow her, cuz she makes me laugh so hard every single day. Seriously. You should see my DM’s from her.
@DrJackKing Jack has the gift of making me sound VERY smart. Not matter what I come up with the write about on this blog, he adds a comment that is so well crafted, so insightful that it takes my breath away. Just scorll through the comments on some of my recent posts and you’ll see what I mean. It’s nice to have a friend that makes you feel smart all the time, don’t you think?
@Aronado his radio show Start Up Lucky features some of the best guests around (and he hosts it from the Rogers Smith Hotel in NYC) so follwing him will get you access. But really, I follow him because Start U Plucky makes me laugh every single time!
@jonesdel – The fact that it has taken me this long to get Del on the list is inexcusable. See, long before I knew he was this really famous writer for USA Today, Del announced himself as the Young Turk’s #1 fan. So much so that he’s even invented a young turk hashtag (and I suspected a search column on tweetdeck, too.). That, cominbed with his wit and amazingly well-crafted articles makes him a fascinating person to follow in my book!
@BobWarren – Let’s see – how do I write about Bob? Well, he started out in the Merciless Flirt column that I have set up in my tweetdeck. Cuz that’s what he is – a merciless flirt (consider yourself warned.) But he’s proved to be so much more than that this week. See, my son, the Young Turk, decided he wanted to be the top seller in his Cub Scout Popcorn Sale (you can catch his on line commercial here). Bob went way above and beyond the call of duty to help make that happen – proving that he is incredibley kind and generous. So now, he’s in my #1 column.
@melaniward – Ok Melani knows all kinds of really cool stuff like how to craft amazing language when you’re writing and what the numbers in your life can say about you). Which is reason enough to follow her in my book. BUT, she also loves making Miss Prather’s Poundcake and is working out how we can turn it into a business card. Smarts, creativity and a fab sense of humor. What more do I need?!
@CTK1 and @bethwarren - I can’t list them seperately because they complete our triumvirate of total twitter shenanigans and mayhem. They make me laugh so hard my coffee or team comes out my nose. You know me well enough by now to know that is all it takes to get on my Must Follow list!
@CameronHerold - You could follow him just because he is the former COO of 1-800-Got-Junk and is a wicked smart coach for entrepreneurs. I follow him because a) he thinks Atlas Shrugged ROCKS and b) his rants are priceless.
@KayBallard I run a HUGE risk in adding Kay to my Follow Friday post because she holds the whole event in such disdain. BUT she did once say that my post made it almost civilized, so I am hoping to scrape by on her good graces. The reason I follow her is because she is OUTRAGEOUSLY funny and always makes me feel fun and smart and cute. There are never too many people like that in my life.
@KylePlacy Kyle knows more about using social communication for branding than just about anyone I know. And he’s got a book coming out on it called Twitter Marketing for Dummies. But the real reason I follow him is the kick butt tune he uses for his BrandSwag TV show!
@YRJewelryGal Julianne is a girl after my heart in OH so many ways! Started her own company, mom of 5 under 10 years of age and is SUCH a big thinker. But what really sealed the deal for me is her sassy style and never-ending sense of humor. How she has the time and energy for all that, I will never know. But I’m glad I get a regular dose of it in my tweetstream.
@BigLeagueWiffle I first got to be friends with Nick Benas through one of my lieutenant Hooligans, @launchgum. And while he definitely lives up to Hooligan status, he is also an amazing businessman. Just this week, I’ve watched him have the kahunas to expose a major player in the licensing world who had the poor sense to leave an immature and threatening voicemail which is now posted on his website for all the world to hear. Oh, and did I mention his tweets make me laugh a lot?!
October 2, 2009 Edition/Addition
@debSellsBR – Deb’s tireless work for the cause of suicide prevention is amazing. I love watching her passion as she provides inspiration, information and comfort to those impacted by this tragedy. She always lifts my spirits – and truth be told, she may rival @jonesdel and @ginidietrich as the Young Turk’s GREATEST fan. Follow her and your day will be brighter for it.
@edgaile – Somehow I got lucky enough to have Ed as a regular reader and commentor on this blog. His enthusiasm for life (and the beach and burritos) make me laugh. Plus – he just lives over in HotLanta. Hoping we’ll get to meet up soon at The Varsity! If you follow him, be prepared to laugh AND to think – to serious requirements in my book.
@DebCE – She’s another HUGE Young Turk fan (I have told you that he has a bigger Twitter fan club I do, right?!). It just so happens that she is a BRILLIANT business owner (she is CEO of Computer Explorers) and I have a realy thing for smart and savvy business women!
@AnnEvanston – Ann is woman after my own heart – I mean she’s all about Warrior-preneurs – which I love! I also love that we’ve beome great friends via twitter. She challenges me to think differently and expand the game I’m playing – I can’t get enough people like that in my life.
@ItStartsWithUs – Somehow the twitter gods kept me from meeting my cosmic twin until this week! Nate and I think and write so similarly, it is truly scary. Be warned: he is up to VERY big things in the word and will expect you to do your part to change the world. I, for one, am totally IN!
@Shama – why it has taken me so long to add Shama Hyder to this list I do not know. Not only is she an amazing friend and mentor, she totally knows her stuff on social media and online branding. Don’t take my word for it, though. Newsweek has named her among the Top 25 Under 25 – yay! Shama and I had a chance to have lunch during BlogWorld and I have to say it was one of the highlights of the entire event.
@MayhemStudios - Calvin is arguably one of the most influential guys on twitter. He knows his design and social media stuff inside out. And I’m not the only one who thinks that – Guy Kawasaki recently tapped his design genius (Guy also retweets Calvin, just fyi). But the reasons I love Calvin are a) he is incredibly generous with his knowledge and his influence b) he is hilarious to tweet with and b) he made me laugh so hard I cried at our post-Blogworld brunch. That last one is really the only reason I need to think he is the bomb! #thatswhatshesaid
@BigHeadAsian – Master meal coordinator for our post-Blogworld brunch, I had the pleasure of watching Justin turn purple because he couldn’t laugh or speak – which of course just made the rest of us laugh harder. The originator of our #thatswhatshesaid game, Justin gets BIG kudos in the fun department.
@katjaib – Kat is one of the brightest spots in my tweetstream plain and simple. Here is part of her mission statement that will tell you why: “Helping people make life changes by making things fun.” And that she does. Plus, she’s got so much sassiness going on, that I just can’t help but like her. Most of the time when she tweets to me, I laugh – and on a really good day, I spit my coffee.
@adwal Lucky me got to hang out with Adam and Brian (@bsimi – see above) the team behind @RSHotel while I was at BlogWorld. Adam thinks it is REALLY funny that I answer my ringing phone in the middle of a presentation(which I only do if the session is particularly bad). But seriously, watching both Adam and Brian foster and build real relationships that in turn raise the profile of the Robert Smith Hotel is pretty amazing. There is a reason they are cited as THE example of how to use social media the right way. Oh – and I laughed so much I couldn’t even listen to the speakers most of the time.
November 6 Edition/Addition
@MarkSherrick – You know that friend you know you can count on through thick and thin? The one who is there when you are certain no one is listening? The one who knows how to give an encouraging word at just the right moment? Yeah, that’s Mark. Consider yourself lucky if he takes to you. I know I do.
@ginaparris – Just take a look at the comments she leaves here and you’ll know why I think she is THE BOMB! Gina is a performance coach who totally gets the no-pretense, non-guru approach to helping people succeed. Plus, she makes me laugh. A lot.
@Lazarus2000 – There are oh so many reasons to follow Ed. He is KILLER tech support (his motto “I just make things work better”) and has saved me and my blog many times in the past few weeks. BUT I just found out the he was instrumental in bringing a terminally ill patient from the East Coast to Hawaii to visit the set of Lost. Awesome. Simply awesome.
@tumbledesign – Ah Nicky. Nicky appreciates my whacked sense of humor AND indulges me when I want to make some crazy change/addition to my blog. He is a make it happen kind of guy. And because he is SO sharp and SO young, I expect we will all be hearing a great deal about him in the very near future.
@PilonBignell - As was true when I added his compatriots to this list, I feel as if I may live to regret this. BUT Eric is one of the geniuses (and yes I mean that sincerely) behind LaunchGum Industries. Just rememeber that when you read his crazy tweets that make me laugh.
Update for May 21, 2010
Okay – yeah it’s been awhile since I added to this list. I could make a ton of excuses as to why that is, but I won’t. Instead, I’m going to list some pretty awesome tweeps for you to consider following!
@LipDesign – Sparkly, funny, smart and a killer web designer. I love how she engages with so many people who do all kinds of fun things on twitter.
@LoriLatimer – She is SO smart! And she is applying those smarts to helping women reinvent themselves and their lives after yucky divorces. Isn’t that a killer business to be in?!
@LauraScholz – A brilliant pr and marketing mind (except that she actually hates pr – but that is another story). She is funny, witty, engaging and runs her own company like an ace businesswoman – which she is.
@Sally_G – makes me snot laugh all the time – which is really the only reason I ever need to follow someone. BUT she also has an incredible heart for children (even the grownup kind) and her gifts for helping heal the tender places is unparalleled.