It’s my 3rd Twirthday today!

“Twirthday” (c) @britmums.

What is that?  I hear you cry … well it is my third birthday on Twitter.  I joined on January 6th, 2009.    So today I celebrate being a petulant child (anybody who says “no change there, then” will be sent to the naughty step).

And all Sovereigns have two birthdays (their “real” birthday and then an “official” one in the summer when the weather is more conducive to celebrating).   Well my real birthday is August so my official one has to be in the winter to balance things out and I have, therefore, decided it is January 6th.

Present from my fabulous mother in law. "Spot on" I say

I may not be a sovereign but I am Head of State in this house and anybody who says otherwise, well see brackets in first paragraph.

I joined Twitter,  followed Stephen Fry and Jonathan Ross, sent each of them a Tweet, didn’t get a reply, thought “this is rubbish” and didn’t touch it again for about a year.   And then mid 2010 I picked it up again, I can’t even remember why now.  And I would hate to read those original Tweets.  It didnt take me long to get hooked and start following more and more people who did actually reply.

I was so adept at it by October 2010 my tweeting featured heavily in this article:  Jonathan Jacob’s blog  and I think we can now safely say I am hooked.

For me, Twitter is an essential part of my life now.

My children (particularly J who is away at school during the week) can keep up to date with what craziness their mum is up to, or tell me what time to pick them up (starting with “Tweeting you as I know you will see this quicker than if I text you”), or to tease me about my horrendous parking by photographing it and tweeting it to their friends.

From a professional perspective I have been able to help all sorts of people who have needed a quick piece of lettings advice.   Sometimes it is a simple “Your landlord is in the wrong, stand your ground” to moving  onto email or phone calls if it is something more complicated or long winded.  I have met some fabulous tweeters this way, I  am still in touch with all of them and we now discuss happier topics, thankfully.

I have made no secret of my passion for good customer service and have blogged about it previously, such as why Giraffe is one of my favourite restaurants for this very reason.   Similarly I am vocal about poor customer service and this post about @HMV got no real response from them:  Dear HMV, reinforcing why I will never shop there again.   Twitter is great for letting companies know when they get it right:

“Just booked my flights with you @dialaflight excellent service as always” and I got “Thanks!  Have a great holiday” in response.   Sending Tweets like that means a company can ReTweet it to their followers, a bit of positive PR and free advertising but why not?

Yesterday I also sent:  “husband walked out of your Hammersmith store today, you lost a substantial sale, 2 / 6 tills open at lunchtime, queue of ten.  He put it all back. @marksandspencer”.  The almost instant response was:   “Thanks, we have let the manager know so things will improve for next time.  Hope to see you back in store soon”.    A great response and means that we are likely to return (and for reasons other than my Percy Pig addiction).

Brand presence is so important on Twitter nowadays (and is the subject of a blog post in draft) and my following of various companies has led to us winning all sorts of prizes or things to review, cookies, brownies, our Tassimo machine, a hoodie, books, Emma Freud’s OBE tiara, a steady stream of lovely things that always make me smile when they arrive.

To Blogging and the rise of MummyBarrow.   That wouldn’t have happened without Twitter.   Sophie convinced me to blog, somebody whom I adore and finally got to meet in December, after 18 months of Tweeting.    Blogging has given me opportunities to vent / review / spout / learn new skills, none of which would have happened without Twitter.

Being involved with Wincey Willis in helping to win £10,000 for Harry Moseley also has to be something I will remember forever and is one my proudest achievements.  As Wincey said, we couldn’t have done that without Twitter.   Here is the story

And what would Twitter be without friends?  I have over 2000 people following me and that figure never ceases to amaze me.   It was 600 when I started blogging less than a year ago.    I have met some amazing people via Twitter.   Many of those people I have met now in real life and spent time with and hope to continue doing this year.   To people that I have yet to meet but finally doing so will be a highlight of my year.   And to the celebs that I am still amazed follow me, me, yes little old me.  Just a tubby, middle aged, housewife living out in the suburbs, they follow me.   I like to think they hang on my every word, but let’s not get delusional.

So here is a Happy 3rd Birthday to me.   Now, who wants to play out round at mine this afternoon?  There will be jelly and ice cream and cake.   I like being 3.  It beats being 42, let me tell you.

In the meantime

 

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