Archive for the ‘Follow Friday’ Category

Yeah, we have been around Twitter for a while and are very aware of FollowFriday, where you recommend profiles to other people and offer your reasons. When it started, it was a cool idea. However, it was quickly becoming obvious that Twitter streams were getting clogged up with tons of profile names, it was hard to keep track of the recommendations. So, as others have done, we started blogging our recommendations, and this practice returns today. Here is our list of GREAT and ENGAGING Twitter profiles to follow. We really enjoyed connecting with these profiles the last few weeks.


Profiles to Follow from @Julito77

  • @Danigrrl5: Danielle has quickly become a very close social media friend. We share a love of writing and we love to read each other’s work. She is also becoming such a regular and loyal visitor to this site. I love how she converses on Twitter. 100% Real. Follow Danielle at @Danigrrl5.
  • @hackneyhive: Another new connection that “gets” it. I already love the wit, the charm, and the authenticity. Makes me want to live in Hackney, London. Follow at @hackneyhive.
  • @tonytorero: Even though root he roots for Real Madrid, Tony is cool. We share a love of #Latism and soccer, and I love to tweet with him in both English and Spanish. You can follow Tony at@tonytorero.
  • @mkelly317: Another fellow fiction writer, Maria is so supportive, positive, and sweet. She brings a smile to my face every time she shows up in my stream. And she also roots for the Red Sox! Follow at @mkelly317.
  • @giorodriguez: Another #Latism supporter who shares a lot of things in common with me, like the fact that we are BOTH Puerto Rican and Italian and spent our formative years of our lives in the boogie down Bronx. But seriously, Giovanni is the best. Follow him @giorodriguez.

Profiles to Follow from @fbnovel

  • @babelonandon: She made us crack up when several puns on book titles were being shared this week. We instantly fell for the humor and wit. Follow Ms. Riggs at @babelonandon.
  • @stmartinspress: This esteemed publisher tweets from the Flatiron Building in New York and we love the fact that the profile is actually replying to its followers. They love to chat about anything literary. Follow at @stmartinspress.
  • @Glory_66: Slavica is one of our most loyal readers. She always visits whenever there is a new installment of FRANKY BENÍTEZ and always tweets about the book for us. We love our loyal readers! You can follow Slavica at @Glory_66.
  • @reynaldomacias: We love Reynaldo and his writing. We love his poetry so much that we made it the first submission ever of #LatinoLit. Follow at @reynaldomacias.
  • @LaLicenciada: She was one of the first to reply to us this week on Twitter and according to Klout, she has already influenced us! And that is a good thing. We love her vibe. Follow her at @LaLicenciada.



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This is was a cool week and we were honored to speak at the annual Latinos in Information Sciences and Technology Association conference at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square. We were part of a social media panel hosted by LATISM = Latinos in Social Media and it was a pleasure to be there. On behalf of v5 and FernandoVarela.com, and Publish, a thousand thanks. ¡Gracias mil!

And for VivaViernes, we did a little video of the great people we hung out with. ¡Que VivaViernes!

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Today, we are taking a different take on FollowFriday. We aren’t recommending anyone in particular, just the most important “secret” about social media.

Today, we follow Hard Work.” Yes, Hard Work. We are following it, like we have always have. Even on those days when we don’t want to, we still follow it. For those who don’t know what “Hard Work” is, we recommend you follow it because if you think social media is easy and automatic, if you think all you have to do is listen to some “experts” (by the way, we are all experts, everyone of us, but that is for another blog) and you run everything on auto-pilot, if you think that since most major social media sites are free and any company can just hire anyone to do the job, then you aren’t following “Hard Work.”

(PSST, we had to add an image to this blog, and not to count out amazing talents of women online, come on, you HAVE to love the image we picked for this blog. Yes?)

We aren’t not going to gloss this over. When people ask us, “How can we get some branding success online?,” we say, “Hard Work.”

And how do you know that you are following “Hard Work?” Here are our some of the signs:

1. You would rather call it a night, instead of writing your weekly Friday blog. (Wait, that sounds familiar.)
2. You would rather personally thank people who follow you on Twitter instead of using automated systems and replies. (Exhibit A of this: @jeffmello)
3. You would rather personally reply to people on Twitter when they connect with you publicly and ask for your advice. (See: @daivrawks or @jamesrivers for examples of TRUE givers of advice.)
4. You tell your clients the truth when it comes to resources and success online with branding and social media. You show real data to prove this. The time for theory is over.
5. You breathe, take a rest, and start all over again the next day.

Some days will be better than others, but in the end if you follow “Hard Work” consistently and authentically, you will see the results. This takes time, dedication, and insane passion. Yet, the best part of this, is that anyone can achieve success online, if you follow “Hard Work.”

The days of the Internet as an automated medium to increase brand loyalty and sales are over. The time to truly connect is here. With a little “Hard Work,” we know you can do it.

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In honor of “Black Friday,” we are doing our FollowFriday post at midnight on Friday!

Ok, now that that bad joke is over with, we move on to continue our ongoing blog series about the TRUE MASTERS of Twitter. That is, people who truly “get” what Twitter is all about: a place where you MUST always be authentic and real. A place where you initiate conversation, but also connect with people who reach out to you. Last week, we focused on Five of the Best, and this week, we add to the list.

The reason we do this is a simple one: we want to take the time and tell people, especially those who are new on Twitter, why we think the people we follow here would enrich your Twitter experience. The people we list today and have listed on previous posts ALWAYS provide incredible value to our Twitter streams. And for that, we thank them.

These five Twitter rockstars are very active on Twitter, but they are also very genuine. How do we know? Well, we have met three of them in person, and that always helps. But even if we hadn’t met them, just a quick glance of their profiles shows why they are so good on Twitter. For us, when we decide to follow people on Twitter, we always looks for three things:

• a great profile
• a steady stream of tweets (yes, we do not believe that you should be worried about “limiting yourself” on Twitter; any time you limit yourself, you stop being yourself)
• how many @ replies are in their stream

To us, that is all that matters and not the high number of followers someone might have. (Psst, next week we are going to list some great group of people who don’t have those high follower numbers, but are just as strong as anyone else on Twitter.)

On Twitter (and listen up, all you brands and businesses who think they know the secret, but don’t), we focus on this basic question: Does the person or brand truly connect with people? If yes, we follow. If no, thanks, but no thanks.

Here is our five for this week:

@theAlReza: they come no truer that Al here on Twitter, and for that, we thank him. Why do we love Al? When we catch each other in the stream, we stop, we converse, we joke, and we connect. Then, we do it all over again the next time we see each other. Perfect.

@sarahrobinson: Yes, we have met Sarah IRL this year, and yes, we have met the apple of her eye, AKA “The Young Turk.” And Sarah has such a sense of coolness that is 100% Alabama Genuine. She offers amazing content and is quick to converse, and she also cracks us up with her wit and charm. Oh yeah, Sarah is also savvy and sharp.

@adriandayton: One of the hardest working Twitter people we know, Adrian exemplifies what every person should be doing with social media: helping, helping, and helping. Once we connected with Adrian, we formed an instant kinship that extends into our offline worlds. We are proud to call him a dear friend, and if you are new to Twitter, Adrian is a walking Twitter encyclopedia who will always @ you back if you reach out to him.

@ginidietrich: This is probably like the 6th time we have put Gini in one of our blogs, and the reason why is rather an easy one: She is Simply The Best. (Ok, cue bad Tina Turner music). But seriously, in the days of companies and brands who think they still can control their message, Gini goes against that older way of thinking and basically says that you must be more transparent than ever before, because, and this is the most important thing, you are no longer the sole keeper of your message. So, you better just dive in and connect.

@chrisbrogan Chis Brogan IS the gold standard here. I am constantly impressed by how he can manage to offer amazing value, yet still do the simple things, like sending off @ replies. For some reason, we still think Chris remembers how it felt to be new to Twitter and even though he has reached the stratosphere of the Twitter Elite, there is something cool when he just sends out real tweets from him that reinforce what social media is all about. Anyone new to Twitter would benefit from what Chris does. Hopefully, we will run into him somewhere in Boston. Not an actual run-in during rush hour, but just a chance to say hi.

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Happy Follow Friday, to all my Yankee Twitter Friends.

In all seriousness, the people mentioned in this video are some of the coolest, most amazing people you will meet on Twitter. Please follow:

@vvarela1974 (my baby sister!)

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We here at v5 love Chicago, we love it: the vibe, the Loop, the bars near Wrigley, da Cubbies, the improv scene, and of course, the deep dish.

Yes, we love Chicago so much, we would marry it.

So today, our #FollowFriday for is all about: Chicago.

So here is our list of great Chicagoland people you MUST follow on Twitter:

twitter2_bigger @foiledcupcakes Mari (like Safari) is so Chicago: hip, cool, and oh yeah, makes the best cupcakes around. I should know, I have tried them and she is not paying me to talk about them. Yes, I am real journalist here. Seriously, I have enjoyed Maris’ business grow at Foiled Cupcakes, since it was about the same time when we formed v5 and started promoting Fernando. And yes, Mari (like Safari) is a Twitter Rockstar.

JoeTheProducerFall09_bigger @joetheproducer: I met Joe over the summer in Chicago, and I was so happy to do so. His style on Twitter (fun, honest, authentic, and awesome) totally reflects his personality. Joe is a Web TV producer and has a great show called EnlightenMeRadio, a fabulous show for entrepreneurs.

Di_Allan_BDaycrop_bigger @chicagodiane: Diane is amazing, her personality is infectious (in a good sense of the word), and I always love connecting with her. She is also one sharp VP for a technology company, and yes she is a hopeless Cubs fan. She will always put a smile in your Twitter stream, because Diane does Twitter right: connect, engage, be yourself.

gj_bigger @big_teeth: Ah, Gregg, you have the right Chicago sports attitude (Cubs always blow it) and your video work is top-notch. You crack me up with your humor and fashionable Windy City style. Now you have become the Chair of GATT = Guys Against Terrirble Television. Yes, sire, I will follow you into battle.

twitterProfilePhoto_bigger @aakomas: This DePaul Journalism student loves her sports, absolutely loves them. She knows her soccer, basketball, and baseball. Amy is also very cool to hang out with on Twitter. You will love how she connects with people.

And how can I not include the Queen of Chicago? The Social Media Maven of the Midway? The Big Bear? The Cosmic Cub? Yes, people, yes, if you can only follow 1 person on Twitter,

only 1 person,


Then you MUST MUST follow @ginidietrich. Why? Well, she knows her stuff, she embodies what social media for business should be about and if she gets a little over 1200 more followers, I promised I would sing her an original song on video. Yes, join the #Gini10K movement so I can look like a goof on video. (Wait, I always look like a goof on video.)

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Today, we continue #VivaViernes by thanking ALL the incredible LATISM members and friends who helped us get our blog, Latino Success Stories to the top (yes, the top) of Google rankings for the keywords “Latino success stories.” We are absolutely thrilled by the amazing stories posted there, and as a token of out thanks, we would like give out a huge “VivaViernes” shout out to the following two people, who sparked the idea that led us to write the blog post:


@antoniocapo, for starting it all by asking in a simple tweet, hey, we should do something about this. See it here: We Need Positive Stories

@MichaelaKocon, for her passion and pushing the conversation on this week. I mean, she RT’d my blog like 40 times the first night it came out!

And then we must thank:

@LATism, for their unwavering support, friendship, and love.

And to

@cafecitobogota, for being a true “tocayo” and for adding more comments to our blog post than me!

And to all the other amazing people who have visited Latino Success Stories and have shared so many great stories, please go and read them on the blog post.

We say to all of you: ¡Que viva Viernes! ¡Que vivan los Latinos de Estados Unidos y del resto de América Latina! We can tell our stories (in both languages) and shout them out through our status updates, our tweets, our blogs, and out comments.

We don’t need the mainstream media. We have each other and we have our stories.


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