Posted by: Fonte Dei Marmi | January 1, 2011

A year with twitter 2010-2011

Welcome to 2011 my friends, or I should say followers!   New Years Day January 1st 2011. 

Well, we have been on twitter a year now so what have we found out about this medium of communication?  Firstly, don’t expect to be followed by Wossy the moment you click on his avatar, it ain’t gonna happen! On the other hand you will find when you plunge in to the pool of conversations, a surprising number of interesting and helpful folk of whom many will be involved in similar business as yourselves. This was our starting point, engaging with like minded souls interested in travelling, property, music and in our line of work designing,supplying and installation of  kitchens and bathrooms.  After following around three hundred goodn’s we, became a bit cheeky and more confident, discovered wine o’clock!..the road to success was now paved, even if at some places with crazy paving!  The penny dropped and as always rolled away out of sight for a while but it had become glaringly obvious that here was a free opportunity to tell the world (or anyone in twitter world, usually well connected)who we are and what we do for a living, and if that was boring we could always throw in some discreet bits of what we get up to when not at work! This seemed to bring us more lovely people who we have got to know socially, as well as in business.

Being set up to promote our company and develop our brand (Stuart Baggs listen up…Brand!) Fonte Dei Marmi we began to realise we were meeting some very interesting people on twitter, as well as very famous ones who infuriatingly would DM (Direct mail) us which meant they were following us, and then when we replied found we had been un-followed!  They only followed to say something in private which was always nice or an interesting question but were being very careful not have conversations on the twitter network. No names obviously, I expect many people on twitter have had this happen, god I’d love to tell you some gossip! No way Jose!

So, after a while I mentioned our much-loved Yorkshire Terrier, Clint Eastwood , and suddenly everyone on twitter hada dog! Our followers grew once again, more lovely people all over the U.K and the world shared their dog stories with us and of course happened to want to ask about bathrooms..we all have at least one after all (bathroom, not dog!)  The Twitpic!  This was a major part of making life interesting, Clint Eastwood was happy to take any space available when we were not posting bathrooms or designs we had seen. On Twitter all the while we were reading some fantastic blogs we would otherwise not have read, many of our new friends are talented authors of blogs that are very good, certainly of a professional level worth publishing.

The Tweet up!

Welcome to the brilliant concept of the” Tweet up”, meetings of like minded (twitterati) people who are all on twitter. Our first experience was in Kings Cross at a pleasant Gastro-Pub in a  cobbled back street, we decided to go and meet some real people from the virtual world of twitter, after all Twitter is all about real people and business in the real world. So off we went to meet the characters behind the words!

 My business partner Mike ,myself and my wife Patti walked in and my first impression was quite surreal! There in front of us were approximately twenty smiling friendly faces I immediatley recognised, & strangely also felt I instinctively knew already. The first thing I thought was -he looks like his avatar, she  looks younger… 

Tweet up rule to remember, do not drink too much! just like a business meeting during the day impressions count as does coherent conversation. So when a professional lady,very successful whispered in my ear “you’re pissed but I want to discuss some ideas about my project next time we meet” I made a mental note.  The worrying thing was I had only had two pints and coming from a music business background was being very conservative. The photos were great and we are all now talking to one another when we need to, mostly work related but alway’s happy to meet for a social drink or meal. I came away with the impression that this was one of the best networking events I had been to. I  discussed this with Mike and we decided to invite twelve of our local, very talented in their field, followers to a dinner at our local Pub-Restaraunt, The Somertowns Coffee House in NW1,  North London. Happily, everyone turned up and we had a great evening, wine, a dinner and interesting, sometimes fascinating conversations. It was nice to see we had brought together fabulous people, funny and talented, now I believe all good friends for life. The whole evening was brilliant, we loved every minute!

Tweet up two- great fun too, once again everyone bar one of around forty people from twitter who said they would come, mostly with their own business’s arrived at our local French gastro pub, the energy was dynamic with so many people to talk to,one felt there was not enough time to engage in so many interesting conversations and intruiging stories.  So more tweet ups are planned and that is just one side of a many fasceted twitter world of opportunities that cost nothing to create!

Investors!   Another angle with terrific advantages is the free window of opportunity to showcase your ideas, your companies capabilities, personality, what you have achieved and much more. Twitter leads to your website, a you tube channel also will bring many hits to your website, we had 31,000 hits in our best month, coinciding with our launch of Novellini products which were mentioned often but carefully not “in your face” on our twitter channel. So, yes investors, we have been approached by many interested parties. Obviously most are VC types and can be dismissed as soon as they demand forty nine per cent and mention” their yield??”  We are working too damn hard, too many long hours to see a suit walk in and hand over x amount of his or her spare cash on the table and expect to do nothing else. and walk away with the company two year’s later! But there is another side to it, we have been approached by large companies liking our brand,  ideas, company structure, plans for the future which I am not going to reveal here. We are a small business with sound ideas driven by a vision we are confident will work, bankrolling it is another challenge altogether and talking to these larger companies one becomes concerned at losing the very thing we are-becoming just a part of something else. With Fonte Dei Marmi it’s about our identity, brand and foremost our customer service. All credit to twitter for the interest and publicity that has been attracted to us, of course.

I started writing this as a short account of our first year on twitter and you are probably saying oh no! there’s more coming… Well plenty more actually, the next part will follow shortly as I want to write about some of the things that happened to us directly connected to Twitter which are very important and special to us at Fonte Dei Marmi..deep breath! Next..Our Friends, our exciting encounters,where allowed to say;) what is on the agenda in 2011, and some very interesting people to follow….

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Responses

  1. Just heard all about you from Saxon Henry and wanted to pop over to your site to “get to know you”. Delighted to “meet you”! By the way, LOVE the Twitter commentary!

    Toma Haines (aka, The Antiques Diva)


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