Current category: Personal Development

Growth Hacking for Wisdom: How to learn from Twitter direct messages

Till Zier » Growth Hacking for Wisdom: How to learn from Twitter direct messages

Here at Social Trademark we are still a small startup, there is no marketing team. It’s basically just me and my growth hacking pal Marc Lilienthal. A couple of weeks ago we were experimenting on our Twitter accounts with direct messages that we might want to setup for some of our clients in the near future.

Most Twitter users who methodically (and often automatically) welcome their new followers with a direct thank you message are aiming for a lead.

This results in spammy and irritating messages such as

Hello {first_name}, Thank you for following!

or something like

I am a {subject_area} consultant, check out my homepage {website_url} and chat me up!

I gave it some thought and said to myself – you can do better! So I have been approaching my new Twitter followers with this direct message:

 Hey {first_name}, thx for the follow 🙂

I was wondering – what are your goals for 2016?

Since I think a lot of my personal and professional goals, I was plain curious what other people’s goals might be. Of course, I wanted to get some traction with my new followers, too.

These were the best answers to my question:

To chew bubblegum and kick ass. And as of now, I am almost out of bubblegum.

Can’t tell you, just signed an NDA.

To unfollow you after that stupid message.

My goal is to fund $1M. I’m not sure how, but I’ve gotten this far with no team.

Goals? Just one: I am writing a book.

Too many 😀

Hi thank you too ?, my goals ,well to write ,learn French and just get by . Thank you so much for the follow too and I hope you’re having a lovely day ?

I will only tell you about side goals. And this is why:

To plan 2017 ?

My goal is to still be alive at the end of it, Till. ?

To leave peace and happiness were ever I go

Find the prince charming and get 3 kids! ?

Goals: ask better questions in all situations and get better at being a husband, father and sales leader.

Goals for 2016? What a great query. Simply put: inform, challenge, be challenged, and grow. Why do you ask?

My goal for 2016 is to inspire

Goals? Do everything better than last year!

Right now, to wrap up today, and get to #ViralChat in about 3 minutes. Are you going?

What do you want to ask your new Twitter followers and, more importantly, what are your goals for 2016?



Update from 06/13/2016

First: Thank you very much for sharing this post on social media and all the positive replies and feedback I got. It seems as if many of you got inspired by my post – and that is the greatest accomplishment for me. I am so happy about that. Thx!!

Second: Since many of you asked me if those were really the best answers and if there weren’t any more complex or detailed replies to my direct message – of course, there were but since they were all private messages and the composer had no idea that I might use them for my blog post and I didn’t want to intrude on someone’s thoughts or privacy, I only published those answers which were the wittiest, cheeky or funny and could draw no conclusion to their composer.

The Art of Smiling: Learn to use the most powerful gesture in the world

Till Zier » The Art of Smiling: Learn to use the most powerful gesture in the world

For quite some time I’m trying to condition myself to smile more often. The positive effects have been scientifically proven. As a matter of fact it is not easy to adopt new behavioral patterns and perform them unconsciously, but with time I made some progress and it really helped me to become a happier person. Maybe you should try it out, too?!

You can read further details on the power of smiling in these two posts:

And you should definitely watch Ron Rutman‘s 7-minute TED Talk on this topic:


To get a job at Facebook you need to answer these tough interview questions

Till Zier » To get a job at Facebook you need to answer these tough interview questions

Maya Kosoff from Business Insider UK has compiled a top list of the most difficult interview questions recent candidates had to answer to get a job at Facebook.

Besides some really tough discipline-specific questions there are quite a few smart and creative ones. Have a look at the entire 29 questions here.

I would’ve been keen on the answers to these questions:

“I was asked what I was least proud of on my resume.”
– Media Solutions Specialist candidate –

“If you were an animal what kind would you be and why?”
– User Operations Analyst candidate –

“How would you design a simpler TV remote control?”
– Product Designer candidate –

“If you were going to redesign an ATM machine, how would you do it?”
– Product Designer candidate –

“How would you build Facebook for blind people?”
– Product Manager candidate –

“Should Facebook continue to add features or rely on 3rd party apps?”
– Product Designer candidate –



Eric Schmidt tells his inside story about his years as Google CEO

Till Zier » Eric Schmidt tells his inside story about his years as Google CEO

In an entertaining talk at Stanford University, Eric Schmidt gave an in-depth look behind the scenes of his term of office at Google. Besides funny anecdotes about mere chance, technical and organizational obstacles, HR strategies and Google’s future as Alphabet he tells several more details about his legacy and the history of one of the most influential companies in our digital age.

Chris Yeah was so kind to write down a summary of the interview. These paragraphs caught my attention:

“Great products happen when people build a product for themselves.”

“In all my issues at Google, I knew I had no idea what to do, but I knew that I had the best team ever assembled to figure out what to do.”

“The people that you hire make your culture. We’d hire people who were special in some way.”

“So we came up with a new rule — if someone is really, really smart, hire them anyway.”

“We never stop hiring engineers; properly deployed, they can always generate enormous returns above their salary.”


You can watch the full 1h 22min interview on YouTube: