A-ha! Moments…

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I live for those blinding flashes of insight that literally have you stop and go “wow!! I get it now!” Lucky for me, I have these “a-ha! moments” all the time, pero like, ALL THE TIME. And if you know me, you know my mantra: “the uh-oh precedes the a-ha!” In order to have an a-ha, there must be an “uh-oh” that necessitated it.

So recently I decided to learn about a-ha! moments, investigate them and start understanding why and how we have them — and how to have more. One thing I realized (a-ha!) is that one if the best times for me to experience the phenomenon is early in the morning, in that halfway period between awake and asleep. (Problem is, I’m usually so sleepy that I don’t want to get up and write it down!)

Well this morning, I had one, and I came here to write it — because this was my a-ha! moment (actually this was the uh-oh that preceded the a-ha!): I write thousands of words a day and have tons of original, interesting thoughts each day… Yet I struggle to put together content for my blog, emails and social media. What’s THAT all about? Ridiculous.

The realization I had right after that, is that all those thoughts are being recorded in random, scattered places, with a large chunk of them being written by hand, in Sharpie or just recently, by hand with a stylus the iPad “Penultimate” app.

My a-ha!: I love to write by hand. Instead if trying to fix or change that, why not embrace it and post those notes… Just as they are, in real-time? I can always type up an intro to explain them, if needed. Gotta figure out logistically how to make that work, but at least now I realize the big disconnect — I prefer to write by hand, and my notes are interesting and beautiful just the way they are — and now that I am aware, something can shift.

What’s the lesson in here for you? No idea. Why don’t you tell me!?

Ciao for now,
Michelle Villalobos (vee – ya – low – bos)

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You: The Online Brand Slideshow, July 16th, 2009 Miami Social Media Workshop

Want to Use Twitter for Business? Start Here…

Lots of you are asking me about how to use Twitter. Below are some resources to get you started.

Most important tip: since Twitter posts are only 140 characters, you’re forced to be succinct, but unfortunately there’s nothing forcing you to be good. To be good, the number one most important thing to do on Twitter is to deliver value, especially if you’re using Twitter for business.

Once you have a following, you can get away with a little more self-indulgence, but at least in the beginning, don’t send updates that don’t deliver value to your audience. Examples of bad posts: “stuck in traffic again” or “just woke up.” Save that for your Facebook updates (if you must – but trust me, you’re annoying people with updates like that). On Twitter no one’s going to follow you (aside from your 10 or 20 close friends) if you’re not delivering value. The best ways to deliver value are, IMHO: by entertaining, informing or linking to content.

Here are some great articles (most compiled from @mashable on Twitter – try following him for a barrage of great Twitter & social media-related info):

1. Twitter Basics for Business

2. 7 Marketing Mistakes to avoid on Twitter

3. If you’re just getting started on Twitter, you might notice that random strangers start following you. I remember in the beginning I thought that was weird, until I realized why they do it. People follow you in hopes that you’ll turn around and follow them. In other words, they are trying to beef up their numbers and grow their audience. Read this article to understand why it’s not a good idea to play “quid pro quo” with your followers:  FOLLOW FAIL: The Top 10 Reasons I Will Not Follow You in Return on Twitter

4. Twitter: So Easy, You Have To Do It

Happy Twittering! And if you want to follow me for more links & content, here’s my Twitter page: http://twitter.com/mivi

Best,
@mivi (http://twitter.com/mivi)

Michelle Villalobos
For more tips, tricks & techniques, visit: http://www.MichelleVillalobos.com