The @DreamWorthy Twitter Philosophy

Posted on 10/30/2009. Filed under: Business Networking, Follow Friday, networking, Pay It Forward, Relationship Building, social media, Social Media Marketing, social networking, Twitter | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

DWG_NEWTwitterBird_logoHuh? What is a Twitter Philosophy and why do we have one? That, gentle reader, is a question we will answer in this post. You probably found your way here because you follow us and want to see what we’re all about. We now guide our prospective or new followers to this post to learn about us, and how we participate on Twitter. Or, you’ve followed us for awhile, saw the link we tweeted on Twitter, and came here to see what this is all about. Either way, hopefully you’ll leave with a clearer sense of who we are and what it will be like to follow us on Twitter.

THE @DREAMWORTHY TWITTER PHILOSOPHY

About Us

Folks, we’re a business. Well, we’re people, actually, two of them… Mike & Kali Kunkle. But we run a small online business, DreamWorthy Gifts, which is a webstore featuring bath & body care products like shower gels, lotions, soaps, bath salts, bath sprays, bubble bath, and bath gift sets – and also offering thousands of gifts for all occasions, home decor furnishings, gift cards and more.

Here’s what we say on our website About Us:

“We are dedicated to providing a safe, productive and enjoyable online shopping experience for everyone with a computer, an Internet connection, and a need to shop for something for someone for some reason (including themselves, and hey, even if the reason is “just because!”). Shopping should be fun and easy. You have fun – we’ll make it easy! (Jammies and bunny slippers are optional.)

Despite our fun-loving, friendly approach to business and life, the DreamWorthy Gifts team is serious about running a business built on a foundation of ethics and common sense. Our founders have over 30 years of highly successful business experience with over 7 years of e-commerce experience.

But we are much more than business people behind a computer monitor. We’re also family members, Moms, Dads, brothers, sisters, sons, daughters, co-workers, neighbors, and everyday real people. We pay too much in taxes, are far too busy with work and life, and sometimes don’t know what to get that special someone, when it’s time to show we care.

That’s why we started DreamWorthy Gifts LLC. We want to help regular people like us find the right gift, at the right time, at the right price… but also without a few things, too… without driving around wasting gas, without the hassle of crowded stores and long lines, and without losing so much of your precious time. That’s our commitment to our customers.”

Our Focus on Service

You can learn more about us at our otDreamWorthy Customer Serviceher blog, ShopWorthy and specifically our post on Why You Should Shop at DreamWorthy Gifts. The one thing we’d like to repeat here, is that we stand behind our products and will do everything possible to ensure customers are completely satisfied with them, and with us.

Yes, we have company policies, but we also apply reasonable logic, listen with empathy, use common sense, act with integrity, and make decisions on a case-by-case basis. Occasionally, we break our own policies to ensure a customer is satisfied. We take service seriously.

Segue to Twitter

So, as small business owners who joined Twitter to market through social media, we make no apologies for marketing our business on Twitter and for trying to maximize the positive power of social media networking and marketing. We’re certainly still learning on a daily basis and Twitter is certainly still evolving. Overall, though, it seems to be working and it certainly is fun. Twitter Marketing

By fun, we mean sending tweets, often almost in a chatting fashion, to talk to our followers, joke, tease, and laugh and smile together. We have met some wonderful people that we never would have otherwise, and this is by far the most enjoyable part of Twitter.  We do, however, also send out what we call “Marketing Tweets.” These tweets are aimed at educating and advertising our followers about our business, products and services. In these tweets, there are links to our ecommerce website. We drive a good amount of traffic to our website via Twitter, and it is a valuable business and marketing tool. We have earned trust from many followers who have become customers, as well. We are very grateful for these relationships, and only wish we had even more time to cultivate them and get to know our customers (and other followers) even better.

What’s a Marketing Tweet?

Here are just two examples:

SAVE ON SHIPPING with our shipping promo! Spend $25 get 25% off shipping ~ Spend $50 get 50% off shipping! See promos: http://tr.im/DWGPromo

DreamWorthy Bath Gift Sets: ORANGE GROVE BATH BASKET SET ~ http://tr.im/CufW ~ shower gel, body lotion, body scrub, body butter & more!

Some facts about our marketing efforts on Twitter:

  • On a designated “Marketing Day” (rare) we might send out tweets like these hourly, every 30 minutes, or sometimes even as often as every 15 minutes (at the maximum).
  • Usually these tweets will go out over a 12-hour period.
  • We run these marketing days periodically… but usually no more than 1-2 days a week (often less, frankly). In fact, more recently we’ve begun to experiment with “opt-in” marketing by asking people to visit our Twitter Favorites at http://bit.ly/DW-Faves, where we list info about us, products & our special promos.
  • We sometimes use a service for our marketing tweets… SocialOomph.com (formerly known as TweetLater).  But lately, we’ve just done it while we’re there.
  • If we use the service, we schedule the marketing tweets for when we are not able to be on Twitter personally, although usually we are there, tweeting personally with our followers at the same time.The real SPAM, not the bad stuff

For the record, our use of Twitter does NOT constitute SPAM, as we do not use auto-DMs or @replies to send marketing tweets to individuals or lists, and as far as we can tell, our approach is completely compliant with the Twitter Terms of Service and Definition of SPAM. We do, however, eat SPAM, especially with scrambled eggs and cheddar cheese.

So why are we telling you all this? We’ve noticed that when we take a break from our Marketing Days, and then restart, we always have a flurry of people “unfollowing” us. We respect this, as it is completely the individual’s choice. However, we do wish that some might try to engage with us first, before judging that we are spamming, or only interested in sending out marketing messages about our offerings.

Our Twitter Follow-Back Philosophy

Will we follow you back? Well, probably, but “it depends.” We try to follow most people or accounts who follow us, but we don’t follow everyone. As you’ll see below, we don’t follow porn and will block those accounts and report them, if appropriate. If you DM us consistently with unsolicited advertising messages or affiliate links, or even send @replies to us consistently with unwanted links, we will not follow you, unfollow you, and/or report you as SPAM. You can send advertising or marketing tweets all day long without being blocked… but we may not follow you back if that’s ALL that you do. We obviously respect the marketing tweets, but we also look for people like us who try to also engage and talk with those who want to talk back. (At this writing, we have over 9,000 followers… we obviously can’t tweet routinely with everyone… but we do reply to everyone who addresses us with a @reply.)

And while we do have some wonderful international friends and will probably always follow them, we are a domestic, U.S.-based business with no international expansion plans in the foreseeable future. So, if you live outside the United States, we may not follow you unless we know you personally or you have a lot of followers from the U.S.

By the way, if we do not follow you back, we also completely understand if you choose to unfollow us. No harm, no foul, no hurt feelings. Unless we make a conscious decision to follow someone or some company’s highly interesting tweets regardless of whether they follow us, we normally expect people (those whom we specifically select to follow) to follow us back. If you do not, we will eventually unfollow you. Here’s one better. Nothing aggravates us more than people trying to just build raw follower numbers. If you follow us, and then wait until we follow you back to unfollow us, we’ll dump you as soon as we figure it out (and we will, because we check).

  • Our Target Twitter Follower: It probably makes just as much sense to tell you who we love to follow back. Twitter Friends
    • We prefer to follow adult individuals (and couples) or other businesses who engage with their followers, or some subset of their followers.
    • We prefer real people who are really there and send @replies to other real people who are really there. Really. 😉
    • Other than “adult,” age is unimportant. We follow a select few under 18, but do not make it a habit.
    • Religion doesn’t matter, unless you’re a Satanist. We have an unusually wide berth of tolerance for beliefs different than our own, but we stop a few steps short of tolerance for worshiping Satan or Hitler or anything hateful. We’d fight to defend your right to believe what you want and live in freedom, we just don’t want to be associated with you, personally.
    • We love to follow people who are generally kind, thoughtful, and respectful, with a good sense of humor.
    • Moms, dads, and animal lovers (and animals) are especially welcome, because we identify with you, but don’t misread or read between the lines… others are still completely welcome.
    • Funny (within our behavior guidelines, listed below) is wonderful. Teasing is okay… we can certainly dish it out, and we can take it with a smile.
    • We prefer to follow people who are at least “generally positive.” Hey, everyone has bad days and times, real life is tough sometimes, and that’s what friends are for. We certainly have “our moments.” But a positive outlook is a preference.
    • As said elsewhere, we prefer people who live in the United States, only because we are a domestic-only business.

Our Twitter Behavior Guidelines:

Here are some general (but not always concrete) guidelines that we apply. Some of this will also give you an indication of whether we’ll follow you back.

  • Sex: We are cautious about the expression of sexuality on Twitter. We will not, under any circumstances, knowingly follow any accounts associated with pornography. At the same time, we do follow @Dr_MiaRose (formerly “TheBetterSexDoc”) as one example, who does not blatantly use sexual terminology in her tweets. If you visit her website, however, be prepared for appropriately detailed “educational articles.” I’m sure this is a fine line that will confuse some folks who see things as “black or white,” and we understand that. But we see a difference between a trained psychologist/counselor trying to help consenting adults express their natural sexual nature, and allowing those folks to “opt in” to following her and her messages, versus porn. But we do tend to shy away from sexually-oriented Tweeters, so the ones we do follow, like Mia the sex doc, are few and far between.
  • Discrimination/Hatefulness: There’s a little bit too much of both in our world for our taste. You won’t see this from us, and if you see something that we typed quickly or it’s hard to interpret in 140, trust that neither of these are ever intended. Well, except that we hate haters. Either of these behaviors will get you unfollowed quickly. We respect freedom of speech, we just don’t have to subject ourselves or our followers to hateful or discriminatory behavior. That’s our freedom of choice.
  • Vulgarity: *#&%#, I hate this topic. Just kidding… that is a vulgar as you will see. We do our level best to steer clear of vulgarity. You may see an occasional mention of that place far south of Heaven, or a reference to poop, which is something we have to stop tweeting and take our dog outside to do. But you can buy an educational and funny book for kids called “Everyone Poops,” so we feel we’re in good company. In general, if we see too much vulgarity from you, we will unfollow you. Depending on the severity or tone and intent, we forgive everyone an occasional “moment,” so we judge based on consistency.
  • Humor: Another thin grey line…. humor. This one is tough for us, because humor is a real outlet for us, and we find things funny in jokes that we do not find funny in real life. We know this confuses reasonable, normal people, therefore, as a business account, we find that we need to temper ourselves. We do better at this sometimes than others. We will use some PG-13 humor and teasing innuendo from time to time — and occasionally tweet something that we didn’t intend, which “came out wrong,” too, which is a difficult thing about communicating in 140 characters. But generally we try to keep it cleaner and more respectful than prime time TV programming will ever be again. Our aim is generally to be funny and make someone laugh. We enjoy that. We never intend to belittle, hurt, discriminate or offend. We’d actually appreciate that you’d tell us, if you ever think we do.
  • Politics: We vote. That’s our expression of politics. We might participate in a humorous discussion of political events or topics, but you won’t see us spouting our political beliefs, stumping, or using Twitter as a bully pulpit (like we have any clout on Twitter anyway). We do follow some folks who are heavily political, and have some very nice #TCOT friends (who have their own Twitter hashtag, which still makes me grin), but we don’t endorse one thing over another. I’m not saying we don’t have our personal views… we certainly do. It’s just not normally like us to be espousing them on Twitter.
  • Twitterfeeds: If your entire stream is nothing but one big feed or one-way communication, we probably will not follow you back.
  • Tweet Value: We are not a fan of constant shout-outs to multiple peeps at once, which results in an entire page of tweets that are almost nothing other than @usernames. We appreciate the kind thought behind these shout-outs & RTs, but it’s not our style and in our opinion, adds very little value to anyone’s tweet stream.

Our Twitter Unfollow PhilosophyFriend or Follow - Who Doesn't Follow Us Back?

If you don’t follow us back, it’s likely that we will unfollow you. If you consistently cross over one of our thin grey lines that we’ve written about here, we’ll unfollow you. If you are porn, hateful, offensive, or SPAM, we’ll unfollow you and likely report you.

Our Twitter Pay-It-Forward PhilosophyPay It Forward --->

If you check out some of the other posts on this blog, you’ll pick up our philosophy quickly. We intended to do more with this blog, and will someday, but real life (work, family, home, small business) intervened, and it didn’t go as far as we intended as fast as we wanted. Nonetheless, we are pay-it-forward kind of people. We try to help others, albeit only in small ways sometimes, but we like to do it.

  • RTs: When we see things we like on Twitter, we try to ReTweet them. We tend to RT great quotes, inspirational things, and downright funny things, as we come across them.
  • Tweets to help our followers (bloggers, businesses, charities, etc.): We especially like to send traffic to followers’ blogs, give their business a shout-out, help a cause, push along a marketing Tweet, or forward on an affiliate link that we think followers might find interesting or helpful. It’s like a little random act of kindness, and we like doing it.
  • #FollowFriday: It can be exhausting for us, but we love Follow Friday! You can see a post on this blog here that lists many of our favorite followers. We used to tweet out this list every Friday night, as well, with an individual comment about most. We loved doing that but it’s growing too large to keep up, so now we usually direct people to the blog post and our Follow Friday Twitter List instead. You’ll find a good number of really great people on this list, and we’re lucky to count them as friends. They’re all worthy (perhaps we could even say “dreamworthy”). As this list of recommendations grows, our Twitter List will be the only manageable way to keep up with it.

Well, my friends, I believe that wraps up our @DreamWorthy Twitter Philosophy for now. Perhaps we’ll add something later or you will think of something to add and write to us or make a comment. Thank you for reading. We hope you found this helpful in some way, and better understand what we’re about and what we are trying to accomplish.

Tweet ya later…

Mike & Kali Kunkle
_____________________
DreamWorthy Gifts LLC
Shop at: http://www.DreamWorthyGifts.com
Read our Shopping Blog: http://tinyurl.com/ShopWorthy
Read our Networking Blog: http://tinyurl.com/DreamWorthyFriends

Refer-A-Friend Promotion: Refer friends and they each get a coupon for 25% off. When they buy, you get a coupon for 40% off! There is no limit to the number of friends you can refer or the number of 40% coupons you can collect. See the Refer-A-Friend banner at http://www.dreamworthygifts.com/ to participate.

JOIN US AT:
http://www.twitter.com/DreamWorthy – Follow Us!
http://www.tinyurl.com/DreamWorthyOnFacebook – Be a Facebook Fan!
http://www.tinyurl.com/KaliOnFacebook – Be a Friend!
http://www.tinyurl.com/MikeOnFacebook – Be a Friend!
http://www.linkedin.com/in/DreamWorthyGifts – Link With Us!

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DreamWorthy Friend, Ken Ramirez of AxsysTechGroup.com

Posted on 03/15/2009. Filed under: Business Networking, networking, Pay It Forward, Relationship Building, social media, Social Media Marketing, social networking | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

GENTLE REMINDER OF OUR PURPOSE & PRACTICE

DreamWorthy Friends Noteworthy Networkers is a forum designed to showcase and spotlight networking contacts and worthy business friends.

DreamWorthy Friends

This is a socially-oriented, business networking concept. For clarity, it is not intended to focus on “network marketing” or “multi-level marketing.” Nor does it necessarily exclude those who work this business model.

As an added benefit, our concept includes a “Pay It Forward” twist.  As we say in one of our earlier posts, this is our blog to showcase, spotlight, and in general, brag and boast heartily about our networking connections, whom we find worthy of the praise and effort. Once we write about someone, they have the freedom to write about any of their noteworthy networking contacts. So, we hope to create a “Pay It Forward” viral networking vehicle, where networking contacts can showcase their deserving associates and help each other.

WHO’S ON FIRST?

There are a few people with whom I have connected online in the last few months who have become friends that I truly trust.  A behavioral interviewing/hiring consultant I once worked with was fond of saying, “Interview ’em, test ’em, put ’em through the paces. But if you wouldn’t let them watch your kids for a few hours, don’t hire them.” His point was about trust – make sure they have the skills and competencies they need to get the job done, but hire people you can count on; whose word is gold; whose heart is pure (or as pure as we get, as imperfect humans).  Hire people you can trust.

When I think about that, it reminds me of Ken Ramirez of Axsys Technology Group. (Who, by the way, is celebrating his birthday today, March 15. Happy birthday, Ken!)

This is Ken

This is Ken

Ken is an interesting guy. He has an impressive business and technology background, no doubt.  He runs multiple companies, true. But it’s what he does and how he does it that separates Ken from the pack.  Not to mention, he is simply a phenomenally nice human being.

KEN RAMIREZ, THE PERSON

Ken has a degree in Computer Science and more than 20 years of experience in the software development industry. He’s consulted with both small and large companies, and every type of company in between. Some of his past clients have included giants such as American Express, Royal Caribbean, MetLife, Prudential and Merrill Lynch. This speaks to his expertise and professionalism, but barely scratches the surface of Ken, the person.

We first met Ken through LinkedIn in 2008, when we were building our own network. We sent a customized personal response to the large majority of people with whom we connected. Sadly, we received a response about 20% of the time. Ken was one of those who wrote back with a lively, friendly reply that endeared him to us immediately. Within a week, we were helping each other Digg articles and talking about social media and business online. Ken is a very engaging networker and freely shares of his knowledge and expertise, as evidenced by the free webinars he offers. Sure, it’s a marketing tool where he does meet prospective customers, but if you attend one, you’ll hear him sharing for all he’s worth, and not once doing what you would consider a “sales pitch.”  Watch an example here.

I’ll sum up this section about Ken with his own quote, from his Facebook page, right under his profile photo:  “Happiness comes from knowing that what you are doing for others brings them happiness.” That folks, is Ken Ramirez, the person.

AXSYS TECHNOLOGY GROUP, THE BUSINESS

axsystechgroup_logoLet’s talk about his business. I really like Ken’s business vision – it’s simple and clear: “Building the web one site at a time.”  His model is also very simple. He combines top-quality and premium services with the best customer service available. Every customer receives his top-notch customer support no matter how small or large the website or the company. This is so consistent with everything we have seen from Ken. A company can be no better than the person or people behind it, and Ken’s personality, work ethic, beliefs and strong moral footing lay the solid foundation for his company. Making it, of course, the kind of company you can trust and would want to do business with, or refer friends to.

Axsys Technology Group offers a portfolio of website development services, including:

  • Custom Website Development
  • Custom E-Commerce Website Development
  • osCommerce Development and Deployment
  • osCMax Development and Deployment
  • Joomla Website Development and Deployment
  • Flex Development
  • And more

Through its Axsys Hosting website, ATG also offers:

  • Shared Hosting Packages
  • Dedicated Servers
  • Website Templates
  • Merchant Accounts
  • SSL Certificates
  • And more

To learn more about Axsys Technology Group, you can research the following links:

What Axsys Technology Group does:premium_hosting

Axsys’ other web sites include:premium_emarketing

REACH OUT AND TOUCH SOMEONE

As you can tell, we recommend and endorse Ken highly. Each time we have reached out to him, he has responded with more than we would ever have anticipated or asked. And every time, his advice or actions have been high quality. Ken is not a “Diamond the the Rough,” he is a true Diamond.

Would you like to network, connect, befriend, buy from, learn from and/or help Ken when he needs it?  You’d benefit – and he’s deserving – so please reach out and let him know that Mike and Kali of DreamWorthyGifts.com sent you (Disclaimer: we get nothing but a thanks and good feelings, so there is no ulterior motive here).

You can find Ken at:

Ken Ramirez
Axsys Technology Group
19290 NW 12th Street
Pembroke Pines, FL 33029

NETWORKING MEANS THE NET IS WORKING

Ken, we hope this helps you in some way, as you have helped us.  Readers, I sincerely hope that Ken – or a connection you make through him – brings additional success your way.

And lastly Ken, the baton is now passed.  Let us know when you want to showcase a noteworthy networking contact and the stage will be yours.

Well that’s it for this post, kind readers. Thank you for reading and for networking.  And hats off to Ken for adding real value to our network and so many others.

Your friends in networking,

Mike & Kali Kunkle
___________________________
DreamWorthy Gifts LLC
Write to us: Mail@DreamWorthyGifts.com
Shop at: http://www.DreamWorthyGifts.com
Read our Shopping Blog: http://DreamWorthyGifts.blogspot.com

JOIN US AT:

http://tinyurl.com/DreamWorthyOnLinkedIn
http://tinyurl.com/MikeKunkle-LinkedIn
http://tinyurl.com/KaliOnFacebook
http://tinyurl.com/MikeOnFacebook
http://www.tinyurl.com/DreamWorthyOnFacebook – become a fan!
http://www.twitter.com/DreamWorthy
http://digg.com/users/Digg4DWF

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