Okay, So, I have several shirts with my Twitter handle across the front. Am I vain? Some would say yes. Let me explain my logic. A famous friend added his Twitter name to one of his shirts and wore the shirts whenever he traveled. He said he has people come up to him all the time at airports to say they follow him on Twitter. In the wonderful words of Gru from Despicable Me, “Light Bulb.” Obviously the idea was not original however I realized some real benefits from having my Twitter name on my shirt.
First and most important is the fact that I am bad with names and sometimes faces. I am desperate to meet the people in my PLN. I learn so much from everyone that I want to have a face to face “hi” with all of my Twitter friends. My Twitter name gives me a great opportunity to make those face to face contacts. Fortunately, I am not two feet tall or a giraffe, so when people see my shirt it is an obvious Twitter reference. So if you seen me, please say hi. I want to meet you and collaborate in person. It is about connections.
Second, people think I have my name on my shirt to try and get more followers. Not so! I am haunted by the memory of my some of my students announcing in every class to follow them on Twitter. Why, why would I follow you just because you ask me to follow you? What do you have to say? Are you telling me about your untied shoe that you must stop and tie? And if so, why? You could have had your shoe tied long before you posted the tweet if you had not wasted the time.
Now, I have to admit I was pretty excited when I reached 100 followers. But, it was not long after that first 100 that I realized Twitter is not about the number of followers, it is about the connections. The more followers a person gets the more difficult it is to make such a proclamation.
Many of my most valued PLN are from my first 100 followers. I value all my connections and hope I bring meaningful ideas to them as well.
P.S. Steve Anderson @web20classroom is the famous friend I referenced in the beginning.