Fabamy's Blog

Crazy life of a CenPho comedian & socialite

So long, #kidneychat! It’s been real. February 8, 2015

Last week was the last formal #kidneychat. After two years, I feel it’s run its course. But, real life is a priority right now, and I have a few businesses to run.

Over the past two years, I’ve met some awesome people! I’ve seen people get kidneys. I’ve seen people donate. And, most of all, I’ve seen a culture of kidney people, with an outlet to communicate, learn about each other and make new friends.

People have stumbled on #kidneychat from all over the world! Some don’t even have anything to do with kidneys, but they still show up because that’s what Social Media is all about.

Make friends. Build relationships. Learn about people.

It’s been real, folks! You know how to stay in touch. 🙂

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My best friends. Some, I just met last week. October 4, 2012

Filed under: Social Media — fabamy @ 9:08 pm
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When I started working for SmartWrap, I had to tweet for 3 different companies. One was a spray-on bedliner for pickup trucks. Not very exciting, but Twitter is about branding. I had to engage with other accounts, mostly in the construction industry. We all followed all of each other’s accounts, too, to help each other out. We chatted about benign stuff and about business.

One day, we started talking about getting jackets made for us. Somehow, it got into a Pink Ladies discussion and we started calling ourselves “TPLs” for Twitter Pink Ladies. There were days when we all stared at our Twitter feeds, with nobody but us engaging and interacting. You know, what you’re SUPPOSED to do on Twitter.

I think it was the very same day that one of the girls made a group on Facebook, just for us. The name changes once in a blue moon, but we always just call it “The Break Room.” We go there to vent about anything in our lives, share ideas & articles, and just…take a break. It’s as if we’re in the office all day together. We started doing Google+ Hangouts several months ago. There are 13 of us. Not everyone can make the Hangouts, because we are all over the country. One in Jersey, one in D.C., one in Tulsa, and the rest of us are out West. The time zones don’t make it easy, but each and every one of us tries hard to attend.

I’ve met a couple out-of-state girls face-to-face. I spent a weekend in Vegas with Pam. I had a long lunch with Bridget, in Orange County. Many of us talk on the phone. It’s an incredible dynamic. Everyone has their own talents, as well as all of us sharing the same passion for Social Media.

This past weekend, we had a 4-day vacation together. Cyndi lives in Cottonwood. She got rid of the kids and husband for the weekend so that we could save some money and stay at her place. You’d think with 9 women and a 9-month old baby that there would have been some sort of drama or blow-out. There wasn’t.

As the weekend came to an end and I drove Roxanne, Luther (our “nephew”), and Bridget to the airport, I felt a little sad. Well, I was also glad to go home, but we had a great time all weekend. Even though we are all total nerdgeeks, we didn’t work until the last evening. To take that much time off of work, in our field, says a lot. We wanted to spend time with each other!

 

Stop retweeting your #FollowFriday tweets! August 10, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — fabamy @ 2:02 pm
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While most people look forward to Fridays, I dread them. Picture me walking through quicksand after a night of no A/C, which happened to me last night. So, a Thursday night in Phoenix, Arizona, with no air conditioning, and a Friday to wake up to, means I know I’m going to get pretty stabby in the morning.

It happened, of course. It’s #FollowFriday/#FF, a day on Twitter to recommend to your followers other people you think they’d like to follow.

I. Hate. It.

Follow Friday is spam, unless it’s done the right way. Recommend people you actually interact with. People whose tweets you find informational or enjoyable. GIVE your followers a REASON to follow people. Here’s an example:
“#FF @TheFabSocial for great information about Social Media.” Now, if I were a person in marketing or Social Media, I’d be looking for new accounts to follow. Wait, that’s what I do! If I saw someone tweet this, I’d check out the profile and then, most likely, follow. Give an example of why that account deserves a follow.

Here’s the WRONG, spammy way:
“#FF @fadkafjsdk @fdkadfjpab @eapciamd @paacma” and that’s it. WHY should I follow them?  Are they your cousin’s neighbor who makes awesome BBQ ribs? Are they a really funny account?
And the worst part: The people in that tweet who retweet it, with no message added. THEN THEY REPLY ALL, without even looking at the others mentioned in the tweet. It’s kind of ignorant, if you ask me. “Blah blah blah I’M SO GREAT blah blah blah.”

Help make the world a better place by doing #FF in a way that people will actually use, enjoy, and murder less people.

 

 

What’s the difference between Facebook and Twitter? July 10, 2012

Filed under: Social Media — fabamy @ 5:10 pm
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All day, every day, with expletives mumbled every hour or so, I see companies and just don’t get it on Social Media. I can excuse people for not doing it properly, because they don’t usually have a brand to uphold. But companies…they’re doing more damage than good to their brands.

I get asked a lot “Amy, what’s the difference? Facebook and Twitter are both the same. They’re social media.”  That’s pretty much like saying that A Joie De Vivre and a Motel 6 are the same. They’re both hotels/motels. Wrong.

Here’s how I like to explain them both, in laymen’s terms. For the GenPop.

Facebook is like a reunion. For the most part, your friends on Facebook are family members, people from your hometown, other comedians/entertainers, etc. You may not have met them in real life, but because of the connection to other people you know, and the interaction, you pretty much already know them. With photos, you get even more engagement. Photos are one of the BEST ways to get attention for a profile or business Page. You add people as friends because of mutual connections. You may have met at a BBQ or pool party. Now you WANT to connect.

Twitter is a party that your neighbor’s brother-in-law’s mother is having. You won’t know ANYONE when you get there. How are you going to get through it? Easy. You start jumping in on conversations and learning about others, so you make friends. Talk about what THEY are talking about and, eventually, they will ask about YOU. If you walk into a party, and you’re just blurting out and talking about how your used cars are the best in the world, NOBODY is going to like you. In other words, on Twitter, they won’t follow you back.

Much like having a glass of wine in one hand, and a small plate of food in the other, it’s kind of hard to dig for your wallet to show pictures of your kids. Pictures aren’t as important as conversation on Twitter. That’s OPPOSITE of Facebook.

Twitter is a little like dating for shy people. You see a cute guy across the room, so you say hi or do something to catch his eye. Now, you could give a slight wave (like a follow!) or, walk up to him and be aggressive enough to scare him off. Don’t grab his junk right off the bat! Give a little wave, he will probably wave back, which is equivalent to a follower. Then you start a conversation. Get to know him. His friends may walk over and start talking to you. You start getting to know people. You being gaining followers. In your first conversation, you’re not going to say “HEY! I’M A PLASTIC SURGEON” to get attention. That’s like an auto DM. People will probably walk away from you. Or unfollow you.

It’s really that simple.

 

Why you shouldn’t cross-post between Twitter & Facebook November 1, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — fabamy @ 10:17 am
Tags: , , , ,

Yet another thing that makes me stabby in Social Media Land: Cross-posting between Twitter and Facebook. I don’t mean just for businesses, either. Regular accounts and fan/business pages are included. Here’s why:

1. Facebook and Twitter are completely different. Would you put 22-inch rims on a Mini Cooper? No? Why not? Oh, right. BECAUSE THEY DON’T FIT! The same goes for posts on both Twitter and Facebook. You get 140 characters on Twitter to say your piece. Yes, you can shorten links to pack more punch into your tweets. That’s pretty much it, though. Twitter is for information sharing and engagement one-on-one. You don’t get the thread you get on Facebook. On the other hand, you can post longer things on Facebook for people to comment on and respond to.

2. Not all of your customers/friends are on Twitter, so why would you want your Twitter feed on Facebook? My Mom would go blind seeing all the “@” mentions on her Facebook feed. She’d wonder what the heck she missed and start doing it for everything. She really would. And it wouldn’t make sense. Neither does your Twitter feed being posted on Facebook. Do all your fans/friends know what #FBLT is? How about #FF? No, they don’t, so don’t alienate them.

3. It’s just LAZY. Since content on both platforms NEED to be different, take a few moments to bounce back from one to the other. Really, it only takes a few moments. You can use different programs to post to both, without saying the same thing. I prefer SproutSocial, but I don’t even use it to post to Facebook. I actually log into each account and post individually. It’s my job, right?

4. It makes me stabby and drives those of us who actually know what we’re doing BONKERS. By bonkers I mean that I picture myself as one of those super balls that you bounce on the floor and it hits the ceiling and everything else in the room. That’s how cross-posting makes me feel.

5. If you want people to engage on your Facebook page, why would you post something that doesn’t encourage it? Your #FBLT and #FF tweets do not encourage your customers or friends to converse. It’s word vomit that clogs up your feed and pushes great content lower and lower on your page and then nobody will see it. What’s the point?

6. 90% of the time, it’s just WRONG.

 

The Magic of Twitter June 19, 2011

Filed under: My crazy life — fabamy @ 6:38 pm
Tags: , , , ,

I’ve talked a lot about the amazing Twitter community and all the support I’ve gotten during the whole kidney transplant process. A lot of people think Twitter is dumb, which doesn’t surprise me.

They think it’s inane, which to me just shows that they’re not following the right people, not tweeting enough or they simply aren’t engaging. Fine, it’s not for everybody and I understand that.

I see a lot of businesses who just don’t get it. They get frustrated because social media “doesn’t work” for them. It takes effort. It takes time. It also takes a LOT of practice & research. Just because you like to tweet from a personal account, it doesn’t mean you know what to do for a business. I am lucky that I got my job because of one of my followers. He knows what has to be done on Twitter, but he just doesn’t have the time. He knows a shitload, but I’m a bit more skilled and a marketing freak, so I got hired. Hooray for Twitter! I am very careful to keep the business pages separate from my personal account. Our bio clearly explains that both of us could be tweeting, but the people I’ve built relationships with know it’s me tweeting the majority of the time. I even put my name after some tweets to make sure it’s perfectly clear that it’s me saying it, not him. THIS HAS TO BE DONE to avoid confusion.

For the past 6 weeks or so, (a bit after my surgery), my sleep patterns have been messed up. I had been medicated for about a week and that’s really hard to bounce back from. So, I’m up late every night. Social media never sleeps & I have to have my “own time” to interact, so I do it after 11pm pretty much every night of the week. There is a group of about a dozen of us up late every night and we started using the hashtag “#PHXLateNite.” It’s built yet another community that I am involved in. So, a couple of the “members” of the group planned for a meetup last night. We started out at one of the Zipps locations in North Phoenix. I got there a little late and brought some friends with me. By using the #PHXLateNite hashtag, we were trending on Twitter, which is always cool. Well, another bar had seen us trending and invited us to go to their place (Canyon Club) so we all tabbed-out and headed over there. The place was DEAD. There were 2 people there. I’m not exaggerating. They gave us a private room in back, which was GORGEOUS. Really plush leather chairs, a couple pool tables and a lot of screens to show the videos of the music the DJ was playing. There were about 20 of us and after a couple of us asked about specials, they pulled out the happy hour menu and honored those prices. It was after 11pm, but they saw the value in a large group. I am pretty sure we would have left & given our business to someplace else had they not done this. That’s what businesses often forget: Take care of your customers & they will take care of you. There was even a woman who showed up, who knew NOBODY in our group, because she had seen the hashtag & trending topic. How cool is that????

Everyone was having a blast. The service was great (considering we were the only ones there, it had to be!) and the bartender, Johnny, is now the fodder of my dreams. Ha.

So, Twitter isn’t just about what you ate for breakfast. Or about whining about your recent breakup. It’s about building a community & making friends you can spend time with in person. In my case, I don’t know where I would be emotionally without all the Twitter communities I am involved in.

Twitter is magic. If it’s done properly.

 

 

A week of huge highs, but the deepest low… May 21, 2011

Filed under: My crazy life — fabamy @ 7:46 pm
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I’d been soooo excited for weeks about speaking to 9th graders as a school in Scottsdale. Sometimes I miss being in the classroom (I taught middle & high school for 6 years) but I doubt I would ever go back to teaching. They kids were great and seemed to actually pay attention. I was hoping for more questions, but they were probably shy. Or shocked.

As I was getting ready to drive up there, though, I got a call from my mom. My parents are in NY right now on vacation visiting friends and relatives from my hometown. I rarely listen to her voicemail; I just call her back as soon as I get a chance. It’s a voicemail I will now never, ever erase.

She told me that the night before, my cousin Sara was found hanging in her closet. She had had a fight with her boyfriend (who I told her to ditch 6 months ago) and luckily, he called my aunt to have her go check on Sara. My aunt got there and found Sara. She had hung herself. Her heart wasn’t beating & she wasn’t breathing. My aunt performed CPR, got her breathing, but she stopped again and was revived when the paramedics got there. Once at the hospital, they induced her into a coma & put her body on ice. I guess lowering the temperature is done often, but I am not really sure why. She is not breathing on her own. She also had a heart attack. When they tried raising her body temperature, she started having seizures, so they are gradually lowering her medications. I am not entirely clear on all the details.

Sara is not even 25 yet. I remember the day she was born. My grandmother used to sing this song “Sara” to her by Jefferson Airplane, or whatever their name was at the time. I’m so sad. My family is very small. My father had no brothers or sisters. Sara is the daughter of my mom’s younger brother. In all, there are only 8 of us cousins in the family. There were 9, but my cousin David died almost 20 years ago when he was struck by lightning playing golf.

I am trying not to find blame, and I have a lot of it I *could* use. Right now, I feel a rock in my stomach and I haven’t stopped crying, except for when I had to present last night. It’s been tough. I keep going to her Facebook page and seeing the postings from her friends. I so want her to be ok, but I am trying to prepare myself for the worst. I can’t.

Sara was a really shy kid. We called her “Sara Loo-hoo” because she looked just like one of the kids in the Grinch cartoon. I so wanted to hold her when she was little! She was definitely the darling of the family!

I want nothing more than for her to be ok and get the help that she so desperately needs. I’m angry, too. I am trying to put that aside, though, and send positive vibes. It’s killing me. I don’t know the last time I felt such sadness. I don’t get sad often, but this is hitting me pretty hard.

My Friday started on another emotional note: Our story was featured on The Today Show. They flew out a couple weeks before the surgery and they were present at Mayo the day of & the day after the surgery. Seeing the story on TV brought on the waterworks. Donating has been the biggest thing in my life! The support from the airing was IMMENSE! I’ve gotten messages on Facebook & Twitter from perfect strangers, all positive. I just hope that our story inspires others to do the same. I never knew how much live organ donations were needed. This whole experience has been amazing!

I presented at Ignite Phoenix last night. Holding my emotions in, I did a pretty good job. I had been wanting to present for a couple years and I finally got the opportunity to present on the kidney transplant. It was only 5 minutes, but from the feedback I got, it really impacted a lot of people. One girl came up to me after and told me her father had gotten a kidney (cadaver) 22 years ago! He’s the 2nd longest living recipient from the hospital where he had the surgery. I’m amazed!

The support & love I’ve gotten from everyone from friends to strangers has been overwhelming. I don’t know how I would have gotten through all of it without all the special people out there. I am truly lucky!

So, it’s been a crazy week. I plan on staying in tonight, keeping busy with housework and regular work. I need an Amy day. And I’m hoping I don’t get the dreaded phone call with really bad news from my mother.

I love you, Sara. Stay strong. We’ll all be here for you!!!

Update: My mother just called, and Sara passed away. They have decided to donate all her organs…because of me donating my kidney. In some small way, what I’ve done will save more lives than just TinyMom’s.

RIP, Sara. I will miss you so very, very much.

My grandmother started singing this, we all followed:

 

 
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