Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Tweeting like Amy

I'm not jealous of Amy Huberman. Honest. Despite the fact that she is younger, prettier, better dressed, more talented than me. Lovely and all as BOD is, I don't fancy her hubby either.  I wish her joy with her new baby and her lovely family.

We have a few things in common though. Amy promotes Newbridge Silverware.  I got gifts from Newbridge Silverware for my 40th birthday, which are admired, so I sort of promote it too. We both have two young children, a boy and girl. She starred in The Clinic and I watched it on TV. We are both working mothers. She had a weird surname and my first name confuses people. We both write stuff (Amy, a novelist, me, a newbie blogger and endless reports for work). We both tweet about motherhood and kids. When you think about it - we are practically Irish twins.

When Amy recently tweeted 'Having a pretty serious conversation with someone only to discover you casually have My Little Pony stickers in your hair',  the tweet received 31 replies and 332 favourites. RSVP magazine reported on it, with the headline 'Amy Huberman posts hilarious tweet'.

On October 20th, I tweeted '7 year old with serious face, clipboard and pen. 'I need e50. I'm collecting for sick children' #chancer #twinnieisms'.  Mine was retweeted by one of my 135 followers (@PerformanceCorp - thanks !! ) and then died a death. Sorry Amy, but in this one example, my tweet was more hilarious than yours.  I just can't compete with your 185.4k followers.  And as for your My Little Pony stickers - I once ran my fingers through my hair at a high powered meeting, but they got jammed in the dry baby puke that I hadn't noticed down my mane. Beat that !

In defence of my lowly stats, I'm a relatively newbie tweeter, with my first tweet on June 17th. I published my first blog on 21st April. I thought that tweeting would be a good way to promote my blog. I was curious about this Twitter craic anyway.

I'm not going to tell you how many views my blog has had to date, but I will reveal that it is now in the thousands.  Thanks to Google Analytics, I can see the views per day, on a world wide map.  I will reveal that I have had 44 views from Ukraine and 36 from Turkey no less.  It's such a buzz to see that people across the world have read your words (or perhaps, have clicked by chance on my page).

Clicking into a blog is a step too far for some people, so many people read my blogs as a very long Facebook post. Although I get plenty of comments and messages there, I have no way if knowing how many people have read these posts.  I know there are also many 'Facebook lurkers' out there - people who pimp around your page, but never make comment. I know this, because many people have admitted this to me, in a confessional sort of tone, as if they have had a pouch in my underwear drawer. (Believe me, my blog is more fun than the contents of the drawer).

I am part of the group blogging team for 'MS and Me', an initiative of MS Ireland. If the name of the blog isn't enough of a give away, all of the bloggers have MS. The blog has just celebrated it's first birthday, with an impressive 20,735 visitors. To mark the occasion, the MS Society kindly invited us bloggers to a seminar day in Dublin, to assist us with future developments. Amongst our guest presenters, we had Ciamh Mc Crory, a self proclaimed 'digital diva'. This gal is so digitally hot, she is smokin'. We got many pointers on how to behave yourself online and how to get traffic to your blog/twitter account.  According to Ciamh, it's all about 'liquid content'. For the plebs like me out there, that means creating online content so fabulous that people can't resist sharing it.

In my slightly biased opinion, some of my Twitter posts have liquid content potential and are way more shareable than hearing about a famous person standing in a lift.  But sadly, most of my tweets go nowhere fast. Yet at the same time, I get a great response to the same posts when I share them on Facebook. At this point, I'll confess that about half of my Facebook friends are related to me, so they aren't exactly impartial, but Hey ! One nice comment is worth two in the bush (or something like that).

In short, I'm finding this Twitter craic hard work. After Ciamh's pep talk, I can see that I'm not approaching it the right way at all.  It feels like I am destined for a lifetime as a follower.  If it was a school exam, teacher's comments would say 'must try harder'.  I'm finding it hard to 'get out there', to walk up to strangers on-line and just say 'howya'. I feel like a plonker if I comment on someone's tweet and they don't acknowledge me. Billy No Mates.

But this isn't an exam, MS or work related.  So why am I so bothered about my paltry number of followers ? I guess there is a certain amount of ego there.  If truth were told, I want to be shared, liked and followed, with the odd nice comment thrown in. No need to hold hands or send me kisses (but I'd never turn down Chanel No 5 ... Just sayin' ...).

I started writing to share the words and antics of my toddler twins and coined the phrase 'twinnieisms'. I got a great buzz from sharing these. My twinnies are seven now. So many of their developmental phases have been and gone already and I know that the twinnieisms won't last much longer.  From encouraging comments I have received from readers, I do have half a notion of some day publishing a book, based on the twinnieisms that I have gathered. I'm thinking that it could be a fund raiser for a charity ... Or maybe a fundraiser for me ... Charity does begin at home after all ... That's assuming it would make any money, of course.

If not, I know that my children will have some record of their very funny early years and the life that went on around them. I'm glad that I have captured so much.  Time will tell if they will thank me for it.

In the meantime, I'll keep striving to be more like Amy.

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