#FollowFriday – Meet Some Movers & Shakers

This is a weekly series that I’m hoping to help add some more relevance to the #FollowFriday (what’s this?) Twitter activity that originally started through Lijit’s own Micah Baldwin to help connect Twitterers with one another. I’ve been asked on occasion about folks to follow and why these people are relevant. So this is my attempt at showing meaning behind my selections. I’ll share several people that I follow here along with a brief description on why you should care and follow them.

Startup Weekend 2: San FranciscoDaniel Brusilovsky

Although we’ve met briefly (and I mean briefly), I’ve got to admire Daniel. This guy is only 16 years old and he’s done WAY more than anyone else I know. Shall I list why he’s someone that everyone should know? He’s the CEO/founder of Teens In Tech, he’s smart in the ways of the world and has a pretty uncanny sense for strategy, renowned speaker, creator of the podcast Apple Universe, a intern Product Marketing Manager and Evangelist at Qik, and lastly a consultant to at least one pretty cool company (i.e. creators of Tweetie). Daniel seems to know a whole lot about the technology and web 2.0 scene and I, for one, am definitely following him to learn more.

Chris Heuer & Kristie Wells

It’s nearly impossible to talk about the latest news and happenings without mentioning these two individuals. Chris Heuer & Kristie Wells are two of the people that I know I can turn to for questions or resources about how to effectively use social media. As entrepeneuers, these two are founders of Social Media Club and much more. Chris is the lead at his brand new social media strategy company AdHocnium while Kristie lends her knowledge and insights as a consultant for Ribbit. Two smart people who have a lot of fun. You’ll definitely gain some real insights from their tweets and don’t miss out of any Social Media Club events. With hundreds of chapters not only in the country but also in the world, you just might encounter one or both of them.

TechKaraoke LA - The Roxy - Karen Hartline & Brett PeterselBrett Petersel

I first heard about Brett over Twitter and knew he did some event planning work for Mashable, but after looking at his LinkedIn profile, I was way surprised at just who Brett was. Don’t let his avatar fool you…he’s not a psycho killer (although I certainly hope not), but he is a serial performer. Not only does he work for Mashable, but he’s the foudner of TechKaraoke, he also teaches a course at the New York Institute of Technology and handles community development for crayon. That may not sound like much, but this guy is always on and on the move. He’s smart, knowledgeable, and has some valuable resources to share. Great guy to know.

Elliott Ng

I first met Elliott at a tweetup here in the Bay Area organized by Jeremiah Owyang. Who would have thought that we had some pretty interesting things in common. We know people from Hawaii, have an interest in China (although his interest and knowledge far surpasses mine), and likes to meet great people. Oh, and he’s also one of the founders of this awesome new travel startup called UpTake. He’s pretty keen on what it takes to run a startup and has some pretty good insights. China and travel? Two big industries that it’s helpful to know people. That’s why Elliott is the man.

Web 2.0 Expo - Korean Karaoke Event - Bryan ThatcherBryan Thatcher

You often meet some great people by accident or through some other connection. That’s exactly how I met Bryan. He’s the founder of a pretty cool startup called Empressr with an appealing concept. Through the proverbial “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon” game, I met Bryan through a mutual friend whom I was interviewing for a separate blog post. We kept meeting up at various events here in San Francisco and also at South by Southwest and ultimately I caved and decided to test out his product. He’s pretty much capitalized on the idea of allowing people to create their own presentations with some flair and interactivity and it looks to be a competitor to Animoto. Bryan is as intelligent as they come when dealing with startups, social media and technology. He sure knows his stuff!

Sukhjit Ghag, Morgan Brown & Derek Overbey

If you’ve been to South by Southwest, you’re hopefully familiar with this triple threat. These three are the founders of “100 Interviews“. Their goal was to go to SXSW and meet & record 100 people and ask them about why they’re in Austin, what they do, and how social media has been an influence in their daily lives. But beyond “100 Interviews”, they are an impressive bunch.

Sukhjit Ghag is a person I’ve only met briefly but we have some similar friends and twitter colleagues in common. But I am just amazed at her dedication, knowledge, and experties in video production. She really has it down in terms of how to effectively use social media (or is it new media) and video. You can often chat with her on Tokbox or see her productions on Vimeo, 12 Seconds, Zannel, and any other web platform. You want to talk about video and new media strategy, shoot her a message on Seesmic. You’ll be impressed at the reply you get.

TechSet/Microsoft Party at Belmont Lounge - Derek Overbey & Morgan BrownDerek Overbey is a man around town. He works for a firm involved in real estate and the web and operates as the “Senior Director of Social Media” or something like that. We had the pleasure of chatting more in depth during my “100 Interviews” sketch at SXSW and I’ve noticed over the weeks since then, he pretty much knows everyone in the community. You can find him at TechKaraoke events up and down the California coast from San Francisco to Silicon Valley to even Los Angeles. He truly gets what’s going on in the web industry and is passionate about the adoption to his job. He’s always eager to help out and you’ll be grateful that you met him.

I first heard about Morgan Brown during the Mashable Monthly meetup in October in San Francisco. We met briefly and chatted but kept in touch ever since. Earlier this year, he launched an amazing new product called Resume Donkey to help those unemployed or seeking new advancements. But during his 9-5 shift, he’s also in charge of marketing for a company called TurnHere which produces Internet videos. You want to talk video? It’s all Morgan.

You want to know more about #FollowFriday and who other people are recommending? Then check out this great site created by Micah Baldwin.

By Ken Yeung

Ken Yeung is a journalist fascinated with the tech industry and internet culture. He's currently Flipboard's Assistant Managing Editor, overseeing news curation in technology, science, gaming and health. In addition to his day job, Ken's the co-host of "The Created Economy" podcast, examining the Creator Economy. In a past life, he was a former reporter for VentureBeat and The Next Web, covering tech startups, the industry's innovations and funding.