Yesterday I got the idea to create a “Twittering Top Team” to keep the [@CityofMilwaukee Twitter Account] updated. Before anyone decides to join the squad, I thought I should make all of my intentions as transparent as possible. First up…
Without spending too much time and going too far back, I think it should be noted that I have been on a passionate mission to transform Milwaukee for over 10 years. Snatching @CityofMilwaukee is a part of a larger plan.
I can’t specifically say what moved me to create the account, but I can say I remember thinking how funny it would be to “troll” with it. The first @CityofMilwaukee update was:
Getting ready to keep my pimp hand strong in the ’09! [link to update]
Adding to that, my bio was something like “On a mission to make Milwaukee the most bad ass mutha fucking city on the planet!” (lol).
Shortly after I followed [@Spreenkler] on Twitter I got an @ reply from Steve that was something like “I was all excited about the City following me until I read that bio!”
Anyhow, after the @ reply from Steve I decided to clean things up and realized that I could actually make a useful account if I tried.
Now that that’s cleared up…
OK, besides all the noble “To make the city/world a better place,” stuff, what else motivating me to do make an awesome City of Milwaukee Twitter account and organize a team to manage it?
One thing is, I’ve decided to position myself as the unquestionable expert of experts when it comes to Social Media in Milwaukee and beyond! Above all marketing firms or agencies, above any individual, above any newspaper, magazine, website. Yeah… 🙂 (Gotta have goals right? :D)
This is a journey that began when I attended my first [Spreekler] meeting in December of ’07. I gave a presentation about YouTube at the next meeting and ever since then I’ve been trying to figure out how to best position myself as a consultant/expert of some kind.
Earlier this year I realized I “needed” a more professional name to operate under if I wanted to “go pro” so I came up with [SocialMilwaukee]. The loose idea was to blog about the various networking events in the city, blog about social media and use it as the place to direct potential clients. I was then going to brand the @CityofMilwaukee Twitter account with a little “by SocialMilwaukee” in the background image. That was the original thought. Now I’m working with [Integrated New Media] to help them “step up their social media game” (both in the office and as something to offer to new and existing clients). So now the background image will be branded with a little TeamINM/Integrated New Media logo. 🙂
Also, once a sound system for having multiple people manage a single Twitter account is in place we can help others set up something similar. Quick googling reveals code, [ideas] and [a website] for doing this, but none seem to be the best fit for most organizations (who perhaps don’t have large budgets, or the technical know how to set things up). Whatever option is chosen it will be a win for the Social Media community in Milwaukee.
This is what I have in mind…
Maybe about 5-10 (or more) tweets from the city about anything ranging from reminders to vote to events at the Art Museum to musical performances to interesting historical Milwaukee facts to… April Fools day jokes? hmmm. The important part is that the Tweet has “noteworthy” content and it’s about Milwaukee. I don’t think the updates need to be bland either. I think a natural “crowdsourced” persona will emerge from the multiple participants (following some basic guidelines).
Then @ replies from the city to people that submit questions about anything Milwaukee would be cool.
If this is successfully pulled off it could be an outstanding example of how these new tools can be used to facilitate REAL communication! Imagine what would happen if not only the @CityofMilwaukee was operated this way but the various nonprofits and neighborhood associations as well! It would create a web of communication with a crowdsourced filter to get the most relevant information to the people that need it (with either announcements going top-down City -> Neighborhood or bottom-up).
I guess I’m revealing a little more than I initially planned but I see the CityofMilwaukee account as a way to educate a large number of people (through interacting with it) how to effectively and efficiently use these tools. Then they can apply what’s learned to their organizations which would only amplify the usefulness of these tools (for everyone).
Small Rant and Muscle Flex
I’m SICK AND TIRED of (some of) the “gurus” giving people bad social media habits! In my opinion they’re worse than the spammers! There is really only a FRACTION of people where using Tweetdeck and all the other crazy apps and websites out there is actually useful. The (miltown)mom who wants to connect with her son doesn’t need them. The friends who want to organize gaming matches online don’t need them. A neighborhood organization that wants to keep it’s members up-to-date via SMS messages don’t need them either. People are missing the obvious (to me anyway) and REALLY cool uses for this stuff because they’re too busy trying to figure out how to optimally configure the latest gadget to do some PR, strengthen a brand or…
OK, now time to flex my social media muscles to back up my “expert of experts” statement. 😀
Without using crazy tools to game the various systems (see [black hat world] for details) I’ve:
- gotten over 3.2 million video views on YouTube
- lured [OVER 9000!! NINE THOUSAAAAANDD!] subscribers on YouTube
- created [a video with 1.3 million views] which is the #19 – Most Discussed (All Time), the #66 – Most Responded (All Time), the #92 – Most Viewed (All Time), the #66 – Top Favorited (All Time) in the gaming category on YouTube.
- used what I knew about YouTube to create (in less than 5 minutes) [another viral video with 218,688 views] to see if I could do it again
- been [on the cover of a magazine] because of my zany antics
- created [a (Mil-Town) Klan] comprised of [100s of social media digital ninja assassins from around the world].
- started [a community] and YouTube channel for and by gamers which already has 100s of members and 1000s of subscribers (and [the most awesome community manager/liaison a kid could ask for.] 🙂 )
- helped coach a fellow YouTuber ([LaughingLeaf]) into one of the first partnered accounts in Germany (it’s all Leaf’s awesomeness that made that possible though, all I did is answer questions and give feedback when he asked).
- Harassed Zappos into making a (really funny) [Akoha (link to Akoha.com)] video (link to video)
- [raised $1,125 for Room to Read]
- And all kinds of other awesomenesses. 😉
The most interesting thing about all of that is… Even though that was my muscle flex, it’s not the best stuff (and not what social media is about). The best stuff is the lone comment/message thanking me for [making the fact that I’ve been labeled bipolar public]. It’s the email from the co-author of [“Your Money or Your Life”] telling me she liked [the video I made]. It’s the COUNTLESS suggestions I get in the form of comments and messages that tell me to look up a certain author, book or video.
It should also be noted that all of this was done with an internet connection, a computer that cost less than $500 (delivered!), a video camera and thinking big. There is NO reason that any individual, nonprofit or company couldn’t do 10 times what I’ve done thus far.
Wait until I have some resources… MWAHAHAHAHAHAAAAA!!! *ahem*
Oh yeah! And I got picked to be an agent in the [Fiesta Movement] (I get to test drive a 2011 Ford Fiesta for 6 months). I almost forgot about that… lol (The idea for this post started before I got the phone call, next post will be about that 🙂 .)
Anyhoo… I don’t often let myself showboat and snap like that…
April fools? 🙂