Put Away Your Bullhorns: Twitter Strategy

140 characters. And yet a million different strategies. That’s Twitter. No two users seem to use the service in quite the same way. It’s amazing that an interface that allows for such minimal variation allows for such distinction. I follow almost 300 “people” on Twitter and they all have a distinct Twitter “personality”. I’m not going to get in to every single way that people can use Twitter, but I’d like to discuss at least two.
Let’s start with what people do right. Engagement. For me, this HAS to be the focal point of Twitter. If you post 20 tweets and not a one of them has an @ symbol, you’re doing it wrong. That’s an opinion. Maybe that’s what you’re going for. But if that’s what you’re going for, I feel like you’re missing the boat a little bit. The people that I really enjoy following are the people who engage in meaningful (or sometimes just entertaining) “banter”. Whether it’s a serious question posed in regards to another’s intentions or whether it’s a playful jab at a celebrity, politician or happening, these are the things that keep me reading.

Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff: A Guide to Dying Penniless

Ok, so that seems a little harsh. But I mean it. Completely. Every time I see that book, Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff, And It’s All Small Stuff, at Chapters, I want to start a bonfire in the middle of the store. I get it. I understand what they’re trying to do. I get it. I do. Less heart attacks would be great. But to me, the core concept behind this book, if you’re a business owner, is poppycock.
Now it is possible to get too mired with details. At some point it is absolutely necessary to ignore some of the small details and focus on big picture/high level thinking. But there are not a lot of business problems that can’t be solved by paying ungodly attention to the little things. It’s not about “sweating” them, it’s about solving them. Often, the thing holding you back will turn on the smallest of details. It may be an incredibly minor process change. It may be a change in chain of command. It may be a simple change in the reporting process. But at some point you’re going to figure out that something very small, the infinitesimal pebble in your shoe, is the thing that is causing all those problems.

Tweetbot: Stealing Money, $1.99 At A Time

If you’re an iPhone or iPad user and have upgraded to iOS 7, you’ve probably noticed that there’ve been a LOT of updates lately. Actually thanks to background updates, you probably didn’t notice but, trust me, there have been. Many apps have touted the fact that they’ve been “fully redesigned” or “designed from the ground up” with iOS 7 in mind. It’s been great. It’s provided the user with a seamless experience across multiple apps and, as usual, it’s free… unless you’re using Tweetbot.


I Hate Your App’s Name, And Other Love Songs

There’s about a thousand ways to screw up the name of your app. Every day they figure out a new way. It never ceases to amaze me. Think of the apps that you really really like. Now think about their names. I know, it’s probably not something you’ve thought of before but I promise you that it’s something they thought about a lot before they named it. I recently read an article about some of the more prevalent and successful methods of naming things. But this isn’t an article about doing it right…



Take Note Of This

I take pretty meticulous notes. And then I usually never look at them again. Wait. What was that? No, you heard me right. I take great notes. I write a lot and in very extensive and organized detail. And then I rarely every look at them again. Why?

People who take notes in order to revisit them over and over again, or even just once, are adding extra work for themselves. They’re turning that two hour meeting into a six hour meeting. They’re turning that 30 minute coffee into four hours. They’re physically reliving that meeting over and over again. But if you take good enough notes, you can avoid that. I take extensive notes because I’m not REALLY taking the notes on paper. I’m actually taking them in my head.


Game Changers: The Apps That Flip The Switch

I don’t know what a lot of these words mean, but what I want to talk about are a couple of apps that, for me, are absolute necessities. Maybe it’s because they take something I love and make it easier, maybe it’s because they took something I didn’t even know I wanted to do and made it practical. Maybe they took something I always wanted to be able to do and made it possible. In any case, these apps are my every day, got to have, go to apps and I hope they can be for you as well.


Downward Mobility: This Looks Awful

I was recently going through my twitter timeline, a little light reading, when I came across a tweet from a local yoga studio (those laughing right now at the thought of me doing/thinking about doing yoga are rude) that advertised how excited they were about their newly developed website. I’m always interested in when a company rebrands in any manner, including a new online presence and I support the movement towards healthier lifestyles, in theory, so I decided to check it out. I do most of my twitter work on my iPhone so I opened the site in Safari and stood, mouth agape, at what I saw. It was (are you sitting down) a website that was not optimized for the mobile experience. NOOOOO!


Customer Service: The Straw Test

Customer service is not a fantastically difficult thing. It really isn’t. And yet, if you’ve shopped ANYWHERE or bought ANYTHING in the past few days, think back about the service that you received. It’s interesting to me that some people think that certain jobs should involve great service and some jobs don’t matter. Let me give you some examples.