It is an honor to have a dear friend of mine Diana Adams or more well known as @AdamsConsulting on twitter in my blog doing this interview with me. Her true understanding of social media using twitter is remarkable. Behind the great smile is a great person who’s heart is gold helping people when in need. Diana is one of those people I consider knows how to use twitter to the fullest. No wonder she is one of the top most retweeted person under the category of Tech having nearly 60,000 retweets according to Chirrps. I recommend you follow her if you have not already.
Q1: Diana, thank you for joining us for my first interview. Can you tell us a little bit about your Twitter story? When did you start? Why? What attracted you to it?
A1: Thank you for interviewing me Aaron! Did you know this is my first official interview? I’m so excited to be on your blog! I began Twitter in March of 2009. I didn’t know anyone on there at the time. I read about Twitter in a magazine and just figured I’d check it out.
I had no idea at that time that it would turn into such a big part of my daily life! I really had no expectations when I first got on Twitter. I just thought I might meet some fun people to talk to, that’s all. For the first month nobody really responded to any of my tweets. Then, somehow, I met @cheth. Through @cheth, I met @mistygirlph – then it was all over. I was hooked. 😉
A2: Time management has always been a challenge for me. One thing that I’m blessed with though is focus. I can hyper focus on a task until it is finished, which is the only way I make it through some of my days.
Everyone is super busy and running a million directions, right? I’m no busier than anyone else. I just try not to take my life so seriously and have fun really. When things start to get crazy, I just stop, take a breath, and remember what’s most important to me; my son, and then I get back to work.
I love being busy. I wouldn’t have it any other way. Sure, every once in a while something falls through the cracks, but hey, life goes on. All you can do is your very best each day and things always work out as they are meant to be.
Q3: Can you tell us about the 3rd party tools that you use and why you use them?
A3: Oh goodness, ok, I use Tweetdeck and TweetCaster (mobile app) every day. I’ve used iTweet, Hootsuite, Seesmic and a ton of other apps in the past. I want to try CoTweet (because of the post you wrote about it) and Pluggio (because my friend @tommytrc recommended it).
I’m a big fan of 3rd party tools because they are designed to enhance our Twitter experience and help with time management. I really don’t know how anyone can just use Twitter on the web, unless they don’t tweet much. Some of them are definitely designed better than others; but for the most part, choosing the best Twitter app is like choosing your favorite ice cream, it’s really just a personal preference.
Q4: Do you have any obstacles when it comes to using Twitter?
A4: I am very tolerant of the things that drive most people nuts about Twitter. I don’t know why that is, but I am. The fail whale, the spam, the automated DMs, the occasional lost tweets, none of that stuff really bothers me too much.
I’d say my only real obstacle with Twitter is that sometimes I have a hard time turning it off. I had a serious case of social media burnout a few weeks ago though, and I learned the hard way how important it is to turn it off every now and then, so I’m getting better at managing that obstacle.
Q5: What advice would you give to an individual or business that is using Twitter for the first time?
A5: My advice would be to stop being so worried about doing everything correctly (whatever that means) and just be yourself. I get messages all the time from people trying to analyze this and that in social media, and I just think, geezzz…. just be yourself and relax.
Sure, there are some small things to be aware of that will make your social media life easier, but for the most part, you make your own rules. If you are having fun and social media is a good time for you, then you are doing it right, that is the only barometer you need.
Q6: What was the best advice you’ve received about using Twitter?
A6: That’s an interesting question. People lead by example on Twitter. The best advice I received was not something anyone told me, but rather, what I learned from watching other people that I respected.
In social media everything is amplified. Since all we have is text, and we don’t have the benefit of hearing someone’s voice or making eye contact, you really have to remember to give people the benefit of the doubt in certain situations. Always remain humble.
I wrote an article once on Bit Rebels entitled “Does Twitter Make You A Nicer Person?” and I think the answer is yes. Well, at least I think I’m a nicer and more tolerant person because of my experiences on Twitter.
Q7: Who is the one person in your life that you are most inspired by?
A7: I’m inspired daily by my son, Henry, who is the coolest kid on the block (I’m a proud mom, can you tell?). However, overall, I’d have to say that I am most inspired by my mother. She was a single mom and raised three kids on her own. She taught us how to work hard and have empathy for others. She reads all of my Bit Rebels articles and emails me feedback. She’s a great Grandma too. I don’t get to visit her as often as I’d like.
This picture of my mom and me was taken on the day I graduated from University. I worked three jobs to pay my way through school, and I was the first person in my family to get a degree. My mother was very proud of me, and she took me out to lunch that day to celebrate, which is where this picture was taken.
Q8: If you could recommend four people on Twitter for readers to follow, who would they be and why?
A8: You mean four people aside from you Aaron? Everyone… follow Aaron at @AskAaronLee. hahaha
- Number 1 would be @mistygirlph. Misty is my best friend on Twitter and a true source of inspiration for me. She has a plethora of creative energy and she expresses it in so many ways whether it is in her sketching, her writing on Bit Rebels or her design. She is always creating. She gave me my treasured Twitter background as a gift, and I love it so much! She is also a wonderful connector on Twitter. She is a gift to everyone that follows her.
- Number 2 would be @Minervity. I’ve known Richard for a year. We work together daily on Bit Rebels. His personality is very similar to mine, so we think very much alike. We’ve had our ups and downs as we’ve gone through the growing pains of building a business together, but we always have each other’s back and we’ve become very close friends throughout the whole process. He is a genuine, creative person with a great sense of humor and a big heart. I would recommend everyone follow him on Twitter.
- Number 3 would be @dudeman718. Joe is someone I call my “Twitter brother.” I never had a brother, so he got recruited into that role. He and his wife, Elyse, are wonderful, down-to-earth people. Too bad they don’t live close to me because we’d be hanging out every weekend. Joe and I support one another, and we DM each other with our little victories in life so we can be each other’s cheerleaders. I just love him to bits. Everyone should follow him for sure.
- Number 4 would be @Alyssa_Milano. Alyssa is a true Twitter princess and an inspiration to many people. She really puts herself out there and engages her followers. She has single handedly changed a lot of people’s perception of how celebrities interact on Twitter. She is a shining example for everyone, using Twitter to leverage exposure for good causes around the world. Whether it’s raising money for Charity Water, helping those in Haiti or raising awareness about the recent oil spill, she is always front and center doing the right thing in a positive proactive way. She makes Twitter and the world a better place. I recommend that everyone follow her.
A big thanks to @mistygirlph for helping me with come up with the title of the blog post. You rock Misty