More than a few tweets this past week have dealt with the importance of taking relationships forged through social networks to the next level by engaging in face-to-face meetings. Everyone knows that LinkedIn & Twitter help connect people who have common threads, shared ideas and values. We use these vehicles to either maintain contact with friends, co-workers, mentors and/or peers, to establish new connections, and/or to grow transient relationships into long term ones.
A year ago LinkedIn made total sense to me for business reasons, Facebook had grown into a cool & instantly gratifying tool for re-connection with both current and old friends/acquaintances. I was still just dipping my toes in the water with Twitter, keeping my tweets private & doing a lot of observation. I may have made reference to this in an earlier post, but after someone suggested I make my tweets public vs private in order to "get more mileage out of my tweets", it clicked for me. Once that light bulb came on I dived into the water with the twitter bird flying along side & the twitter whale swimming over capacity at times without looking back.
Twitter gives everyone a chance to be a Marketer. This platform gives people the opportunity to sell themselves and for many, to be a living, breathing brand presence. I believe how people present themselves on Twitter, i.e. whether they communicate in an edited manner or not, says so much about a person. So much can be read into & understood about a person whether they are speaking their mind - reacting to twitter noise or just saying the first thing that pops out of their head that will fit in 140 characters. You almost instantly have a gut reaction to people & know if you want to know more about them, or if you'd prefer to block them. To some the pull is stronger & you want to bring them into your personal circle, not just within your Twitter space.
"...let me feel the "isness" of things and people, without resistance, without trying to impose my own pattern upon them or exploit them for selfish ends. Let me welcome them, enjoy them, value them, love them, for what they are and for what they are becoming..." - George Appleton
A couple examples of people with whom I felt a stronger connection with were Missy (aka @MarketingMamaMN ) and Erica ( @EricaMayer ). I can't really remember how I was originally introduced to them virtually, but I believe that everything happens for a reason & this was no different. I was meant to cross paths with these spirited ladies & to draw from their experiences. They each offer something very different to their followers. I am blessed to have finally met each of them face-to-face early last week and look forward to building on those meet-ups & taking those friendships to another level online and more importantly, off-line. There are a few other tweeps on my list to connect with, and I'm making it a priority to do so very soon.
Passion is something so many people strive to have in their lives, whether it's around your family, work,writing, photography, a hobby, or a charitable cause which you volunteer and/or raise awareness & funds for. These are two people who I believe are truly passionate about being successful with their personal & business goals. At at the same time, they have made a huge difference in the lives of those around them. They are able to sew social gifts and publish them, or "ship them" as Seth Godin would say. That's a pretty awesome talent to be able to go to bed with at the end of the day.