Welcome to TOLeeps. Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Mark Pannell, @7son75 on Twitter. I started this page for one reason: to help Toledoans connect on Twitter. Twitter does a lot of things right, but cataloging users by geographical area is not one of them. With that in mind, I’d like this site to serve as a resource for Toledo Twitter users looking for fellow Toledoans on Twitter. As time passes, I might discover a more scientific approach to gathering Toledoans. But until then, I’ll be compiling this list by hand.

So what else will TOLeeps be? I have a few ideas. I’d like to implement a “Spotlight On…” feature at least monthly. We’ll highlight a Toledo Twitter user in a short interview and article. Compiling a massive list of Twitter names is all fine and dandy, but the real fun begins when we get to know each other. I think a spotlight series would build more excitement for the site than a mere repository of names.

I’d also like to include coverage of monthly Toleetups and Toledo Social Media Breakfasts. There are a lot of talented individuals in the area who are making an impact in social media. I’d like to draw attention to their efforts. With any luck, we can also expose a lot more area residents to Toleetups. Casual users who could be turned off to the idea might get a better understanding of the social aspects of these gatherings.

But there is a caveat to all of this. I need help. I’m perfectly OK with doing all of the work that I have the ability to do. But there are some things that I can’t do. I’d like to implement a feature to allow users to follow each other right from the list. But I have limited experience with this type of thing and no experience with the Twitter API. I’m also looking for writers to contribute to coverage of the events listed above. With more writers, we could probably also make the “Spotlight On…” series weekly rather than monthly. I could also use some help with data entry. If this takes off, I won’t be able to input all of the new listings as quickly as I’d like.

And lastly, I need advertisers/sponsors. Why? There are some limitations to the WordPress.com format. I’d like to have the site hosted independently to allow for more functionality. The first advertiser/sponsor that I’ll be looking for will be to cover the cost of registration and hosting for the first year. That advertiser/sponsor will receive a static advertisement on our homepage for twelve months from the time the site launches independent of WordPress.com. Beyond that, I’ll be looking for additional sponsors and advertisers.

Recently, Mike Driehorst and I had a brief conversation on Twitter about the possible formation of a Toledo Social Media Club. Mike mentioned that one of the biggest factors that prohibited the club’s formation was the problems associated with collecting dues. I’d like the eventual permanent home of TOLeeps to feature ads from locally owned businesses. The revenue generated from those ads would be used to form and maintain a Toledo Social Media Club. I have no concrete figures on what type of revenue we could hope to generate nor how much the club would require to stay afloat. All of this might sound a little ambitious, but I’d rather give it a shot than wish I had later.

So, this is where all of you come in. If you’d like to help in any of the ways listed above or in ways that I’ve not even thought of yet, please drop me a line at 7son75@gmail.com. And be sure to follow @TOLeeps on Twitter. As of this writing, there’s only one post on that account. But all updates to this site will be tweeted there. I appreciate any help I can get. But if I wind up flying this plane solo, I’ll be happy to do it. It might just take me a little longer to get there. I’m working on getting an integrated signup form on the Get Listed page. Keep an eye on Twitter to find out when that goes live. Until then, happy tweeting!