I joined twitter March 21st of 2009. I have tweeted 12,500+ times since then or roughly about 11 times a day.
I don’t remember what my first tweet was nor do I remember when I sent it, I think it was somewhere in mid ’09 to beginning of ’10. I do remember when I started becoming really active. A friend, who blogged & was very active in the Young Washington Cattleman’s, encouraged me to become more active and start participating in this thing called #AgChat. She explained this was a hashtag or topic used to discuss all things agriculture & they have a weekly chat on Tuesday’s from 5pm to 7pm PST.
According to a data dude I know, I started using the “#agchat” on tweets relating to agriculture in March of ’10. This makes sense as I attended Syngenta’s Leadership At Its Best through American AgriWomen in April of 2010 and had my first “tweetup” with Michele Payn-Knoper (@mpaynknoper) & Cari Rincker (@CariRincker). Of course we didn’t call it a tweetup and it was my first experience meeting the strangers I followed. It was at this event in North Carolina I learned social media from Michele. I am fairly certain after this event my obsession…er…I mean…my interest in social media skyrocketed.
Over the next year I tweeted like a maniac. I would share things about agriculture, particupate in #agchat’s, and talk about every day things as well. There were numerous conversations with people from around the country discussing various topics. I was gaining followers and finding other neat & exciting people to follow. Many times I wanted to elaborate more than 140 characters on a subject or not bore my facebook friends with long posts so I started contemplating a blog.
In February ’11 I took that step. Thanks to Jeff Fowle (@JeffFowle), a social media friend I had never met, we came up with the title Oregon Green! Now I just needed to figure out what I wanted to write about. Then I saw an article about how today’s women weren’t involved in “Big Ag”. As a woman who agriculture is part of my being, I responded with my first blog post, “Women in ‘Big Ag’”.
I continued to build relationships & friendships through twitter. Having serious & silly conversations with folks. In August ’11, I was fortunate enough to attend AgVocacy 2.0 presented by the AgChat Foundation. This is where my people or tweeps who I called friends actually became friends. I would attempt to name them all but afraid I would leave someone out but you all know who you are!
Since attending AgVocacy 2.0, my life has been a social media blur. In December ’11 I was asked to join the AgChat Foundation board, moderated #AgChat’s and have had several more “tweet-ups”.
Most recently I road-tripped down to Califonia to meet two social media friends, Megan Brown (@megraeb) & Jenny Dewey (@jenlynndewey). The authenticity of the people I meet via twitter never ceases to astound me and Megan & Jenny were no exceptions to that. I hope this next year bring many more “tweeps” in real life.
The social media social network I have created for myself in the last 3 years blows my mind. My world has become much smaller that’s for sure. Twitter & social media have advanced my professional opportunities, gave me a chance to spread the word of Oregon Agriculture and most importantly tell my story.