Using Social Networking for a Worthy Cause

July 30, 2008

One of the key success factors in Social Networking is that you build personal relationships with the folks you meet along the way. Granted, you won’t get to know everyone to the same degree.

But, there are some whom you are destined to develop a deeper relationship. It’s not always known why things work out that way. Which brings me to what I want to share with you right now.

A dear friend and fellow social networker, Monikah Ogando, is faced with what I call a “real life” situation. Her 11 year old daughter, Sarah, has been stricken with a lymphatic disease and a enlarged spleen.

In order for the doctors to properly treat little Sarah’s disease they need to run a battery of diagnostic tests to get to the root cause. Being a home based business owner and solo-entrepreneur, Monikah’s medical insurance is not quite up to the task because she’s reached the limits of her coverage.

In order for the doctor’s to perform the next series of diagnostic checks, Monikah needs to walk into their offices with CASH to cover the bill – or they’re not going to do the tests.

Can you imagine that?

Interestingly enough, I planted the seed for Monikah to share her situation with me during a Twitter conversation we were having this past Sunday evening – I asked her, “what was the biggest thing she had on her plate right now?” And she responded by asking me if we could take the discussion offline and SKYPE each other.

During our 1-hour chat session she shared with me what was going on with her daughter’s health. I proceeded to ask her how was she going to deal with her challenge, since she’s the one that close family members tend to lean on during hard-times… and now she’s the one that needs a helping hand.

That’s when she started to tell me about the “fire sale” she was planning to launch. Monikah is a highly successful business coach and info product marketer, with eight years of experience. Along with a lot of info products, she also has a group coaching/private membership site that she runs.

The “fire sale” Monikah is offering gives you access to all of her business building resources that she’s developed over the last eight years, at a price that is approximately 70% off the normal selling price.

Her system is called, “Jumpstart Your Business in 30 Days.” Here’s the link to her site. www.JumpStartYourBizin30.com

Before we go any further I feel a strong need to inform you that I get nothing out of this promotion, other than the satisfaction of helping out a dear friend who has a serious need and a little girl that has a very bright future.

Monikah, out of the kindness of her heart, asked me if I wanted an affiliate link to compensate me for referring her services to my social networking friends. I flat out declined her offer!

There was no way I could look at myself in the mirror, if on one hand I’m trying to help her and with the other hand I’m taking from her. Those are conflicting morals and personal values.

So, I’m asking you, trusted friends and colleagues, to take a look at what Monikah has to offer and if you find value and relevance to what you do, make a purchase.

I’m confident that Monikah will use the funds to help secure the well-being of little Sarah.

A few of Monikah’s social networking friends have stepped forward to help promote Monikah’s “fire sale,” many of which you might know. They include Nancy Perez, Alejandro Reyes (AKA-Successfool), and Ron Hudson . Others are coming onboard daily.

I thought it was appropriate to show you a picture of Monikah and Sarah together. It’s always good to be able to look into the eyes of a person. See the photo and video are posted below. The video will show you that Sarah is one smart cookie and undoubtedly has a very bright future in store for her.

Take a look…

I would like to thank you in advance for allowing me to share this human interest story with you and I’m looking forward to coming back to you later with a follow-up on how Sarah is progressing.

My Sincere Regards,

Jim Turner

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Why Twitter is My Social Networking Secret Weapon…

July 13, 2008

Back in March when I first heard about Twitter, you wouldn’t have been able to convince me that one day I’d be blogging on the value added by using Twitter.

Initially, I saw it as another way to waste away my day and to be a major distraction, preventing me from getting the things done that I really needed to get done.

But over time, Twitter has become a critical tool in my Social Networking efforts. Yes, it experiences service outages (quite frequently, might I add), but those incidences have not hindered the ROI that I’m getting from the time invested in using Twitter… because I don’t use Twitter as an IM service.

Here are some ways that Twitter has benefitted me over the last few months:

Met and interacted with other like-minded people – some of my best online friends are folks that I communicate with frequently on Twitter. Let me rephrase that statement – ALL of my BEST online friends are people that I interact with on Twitter. Many of these friendships started with a simple Twitter conversation that was eventually taken off-line for a deeper level of conversation and relationship building.

Found resources that helped me solve a technical computer-related problem – after sending out a desperate tweet asking for help with an email problem, several people in my network responded with links to Outlook help forums and with personal advice on how to solve my problem. They saved me tons of time in searching and reading articles.

Located several Squidoo experts by blasting a tweet to my network asking “whom they would  recommend as a lens developer.”

This is just a sampling of how using Twitter has help me. While writing this blog, I started a conversation with fellow tweeter, Kristen Beireis, AKA life_enthusiast and she said to mention that you can increase your cash flow with Twitter.

I couldn’t agree more, because I’ve found and built relationships with several new business partners – now working on two new JV projects with fellow Twitterbuds and have over the last few months developed long-term relationships with a couple of new copywriting clients.

Bottom line: Twitter can be whatever you decide to make it… a business builder or a time waster. Quite frankly, I only spend between 20 and 30 mins/day actively using twitter. Although I have it “live” most of the time, depending on the type of work that I’m doing.

Right now, I have 931 people who follow my tweets and I follow just over 1,200. These are highly targeted people, with whom I have lot in common. In fact, many of them are connected with me as a Facebook Friend… or on my Facebook Fan Page… or as part of my Facebook Social Media Marketing Mastermind Group.

Of all the Social Networking tools and apps that I use, Twitter is my Secret Weapon. My goal is to someday, have ALL of my contacts in my Twitter network. And here’s why…

The one big advantage I have when using Twitter is that I can instantly message each of my Followers, not with a SPAM sandwich, but to let them know about things that I’m involved in that they can benefit from, such as, a new blog post, a new Social Networking tip that I’ve recently learned, links to helpful resources, announcements about Social Networking interviews and events that I’m participating in or along with other experts.

In marketing terminology this is called Branding. Twitter is a great tool for helping you to become a recognized expert in your niche. And when people have a need for what you have to offer – guess who they’re going to come to for help – YOU!

If you’d like to become a recognized expert in your niche and have access to real-time Social Networking information, then let’s connect now. Follow my tweets for a while and see how I use Twitter. Also, connect with a lot of the people in my tweet network and see what they’re doing.

Yep, I’m now a Twitter or micro-blogging Evangelist. I’m no longer a “Twitter Hater.”

Let’s Tweet!

Jim Turner

P.S. If you’re already using Twitter, let me know about the success stories you’re experiencing by leaving a comment below.

P.S.S There are other micro-blogging apps available – Plurk, Pownce, Tumblr and most recently, Identi.ca. I have accounts in some of these, but I’m sticking with Twitter because I’ve spent too much time and effort building my current network.