Many of you are familiar with the Blue Key campaign that I’ve been working on since last year for my client, USA for UNHCR.
There are so many things I’ve learned during the course of this campaign – about blogger outreach, about measurement and analytics, about Facebook Groups, about community building – there are probably a ton of posts waiting to be written.
Photo of me and my Blue Key courtesy Razoo
So I figured I’d start with a post on one of our most successful tactics that helped achieve the 2011 goal for the campaign: tweetathons.
The very first tweetathon we held was on June 13, 2011. It came together rather quickly – in about a week – and what I loved most about it was that it was a Blue Key Champion-generated idea (I’d wanted to do something like this even before we started the campaign, but I knew it wouldn’t work until we’d built a community).
But when the Champions suggested doing this, you didn’t need to ask me twice! That first tweetathon was so successful (169% increase in web traffic and more than half the key purchases that week came from the tweetathon), that we decided to do them as often as possible. So, with Champion buy-in, we did four more tweetathons last year; one each, September through December.
12 tips on planning and running a successful tweetathon
Beth Kanter (also a Blue Key Champion) did a terrific case study on our use of Analytics back in August, and there’s quite a bit about the tweetathon in there. So I’ll pick up where she left off.
If anyone is not familiar with a tweetathon, it is basically a telethon type event that is held over Twitter. When done right, they can be great tools for significantly increasing awareness as well as generating “real” results.
1. Decide your hashtag
This may seem self-evident, but often it’s not. If you have a hashtag you’ve been using frequently to drive attention to your cause/campaign, use that, instead of creating a new hashtag.
Why? There is already a level of familiarity built into that hashtag. Use that to your advantage.
2. Get your community on board before the tweetathon
As I mentioned earlier, I’d had the idea of doing a tweetathon-style “event” when we were first planning our strategy. But we didn’t push it early on for two reasons:
- The hashtag (#bluekey) needed to gain traction
- We needed our Champions to get on board with the idea… after all, we needed people to “staff” the tweetathon, right?
Image of Gumby with the Blue Key courtesy Sean McGinnis
Once the hashtag had started gaining traction – thanks in no small part to the efforts of our Champions, who were blogging, tweeting and Facebooking their hearts out – we slowly started building a community of people who were familiar with the hashtag and refugee issues.
And in December, #bluekey was trending in DC.
And the most important of these? The Champions. So when they came up with the idea of doing a tweetathon, I knew it would work, because they were invested in the success of the campaign.
3. Plan it like it’s your wedding
Twitter is so free-flowing, it’s easy to underestimate – or completely discount – the amount of planning that goes into pulling off a successful event such as a tweetathon.
We were fanatical in our planning. We set up schedule documents with time slots to be filled out, one for each hour (our tweetathons ran 9 am – 9 pm ET), and asked the Champions to sign up at least for an hour, if they could.
We also created:
- “how to participate in the tweetathon” documents, complete with instructions on Twitter chats,
- informational documents on USA for UNHCR and refugee issues (including key statistics and “news they could use”), and
- a separate tweetathon “guide” for each such event, that linked to relevant documents. It also included a few sample tweets (particularly useful for those Champions who wanted to schedule tweets but might not be able to make the event in person).
4. Make sure your tweetathon is “staffed”
As I said earlier, we asked the Champions to sign up for at least an hour for the tweetathons. This ensured we wouldn’t run into “dead air” on Twitter – yes, that can happen! – and as far as possible, we tried to get at least two Champions per time slot, so that they could talk to each other, and back each other up.
Photo courtesy Adam Toporek
In addition, I was “on” the entire time (you should have seen me at 9 pm at night, I was not a pretty sight), and later in the year, so was Rachael Seda, who has been working with me on the campaign.
Rachael and I played a supporting role, helping to RT our Champions’ tweets, and watching the tweetathon to make sure everything was working. This gave both the client and the Champions a level of confidence that someone had their back, so to speak.
5. Communicate, communicate, communicate
As we planned the tweetathon, we made sure to communicate the plans with the Champions; both in the Facebook Group that serves as a day-to-day communication mechanism for them, as well as via email when necessary. Sharing the schedule, “how-to” document, day-of guide… all these were communicated both ways.
During the tweetathon, we communicated tidbits and exciting “happenings” to the Champions in real time. For example, if we saw a significant key purchase come through. Or if someone sent out a really funny, or touching, tweet.
Funny as it might sound, we used the Facebook group to communicate about a Twitter event; and it worked terrifically well.
6. Pre-promote your tweetathon
Once we knew the schedule, who (if any) the special guest would be, we promoted the tweetathons as much as we could.
We posted announcements to the (periodic) Blue Key e-newsletters, the Blue Key blog (like this one), and we encouraged our Champions to spread the word as well. And we posted periodically, and then more frequently, on Twitter, about the upcoming event.
A great tip from Champion Betsy Decillis (paraphrased): If you have close contacts you think will support you, share this information with them beforehand. That makes it more likely that they will participate and take the actions you hope they will.
Now, following the first tweetathon, I started getting a lot of pitches from PR agencies and organizations to participate in similar events. Perhaps these work, but they didn’t for me, because either I didn’t have a relationship with the organizations, or a particular interest in the cause.
If you have the resource to blast-pitch people, you can try that (though it’s not an approach I advise at the best of times). Rather, I suggest you focus on reaching out to the people you’re connected to fairly closely, since they are most likely to want you to succeed.
When a tweetathon takes off, it can bring you new Champions, just like Jennifer Fong.
7. Have a goal … and communicate it
There’s that C word again. But it’s tough to do an event like a tweetathon and generate excitement if you don’t have a goal to shoot for. It might be X amount of money you’re trying to raise, or something else.
Props to Champion Tony Rivera and his team for creating this Ã¼ber-cool widget counter for the campaign… free!
In our case, we had a certain number of keys we were trying to get sold, so over the course of the tweetathon, we’d give our Champions periodic updates as to where we stood on the numbers.
Doing that helped get them more energized… because they didn’t just know what we were aiming for, they knew how far we were from it.
8. Have fun and be yourself
You can plan all you want, but I think what makes an event like a tweetathon fun is the surprise element that comes into play. Even though we gave our Champions a few sample tweets and the general outline of the day, we never insisted that they tweet a certain way.
As a result, some terrifically creative and, at times, hilarious, things happened. KiKi L’Italien spontaneously promised to film a video while she sang “Private Dancer.” Her challenge took off, and was met.
Betsy Decillis had us in stitches of laughter by the way she
harassed encouraged people to buy keys.
Tinu Abayomi-Paul promised to crunk on camera if a certain number of keys were purchased (er, Tinu, I still haven’t seen that video…).
The point I’m making is that I couldn’t have predicted any of this happening, much less strong-armed the Champions into issuing challenges and what not. But as people get more “into” a tweetathon, as they get more invested in what you’re trying to do, they will come up with things like this.
And they’re all unique to who they are. And amazing fun.
9. Be available
Staffing a tweetathon is no joke; you’re going to want to put an out-of-office message on your email (or, at the very least, minimize how many times you check it during the event) and focus your energies on the event itself.
And that means you’ll have to be available to those participating in the event every which way you can. I’d get DMs, Facebook messages, emails, G-chat messages, text messages… and I had to make sure I answered them all.
Because it wasn’t about what I was comfortable doing, or how I was comfortable responding, but about what the Champions needed. So I made sure I (and, later, Rachael), was there. So be available and make sure your community/Champions know that.
Not during a tweetathon, but Rachael even got Darius Rucker to show his support for the Blue Key!
10. Track track track
I shared quite a bit about our analytics in Beth’s post, and the one thing I’m really happy we did early on was set up tracking URLs (via Google Analytics’ URL Builder tool) to three specific pages for each channel we’d be disseminating information in.
So, for example, we had three sets of tracking URLs for Twitter, three for Facebook, three for email, and so on.
We reminded the Champions to try and use the Twitter-specific URLs as much as possible. And they did, to the best of their abilities.
So when we looked at the analytics, we could see which channels were having the most impact. It’s really interesting if you do this over time; prior to the first tweetathon, for example, Twitter was nowhere near being a traffic leader. But after? Yup.
(I know this image is tiny, I’m working within WUL theme constraints; if you click it, it will be legible in a new window.)
11. Variety is the spice of life, er, tweetathons
While the #bluekey tweetathons were primarily staffed by Champions, we tried to mix it up a bit by bringing a more structured “interview” format to the tweetathons for at least an hour.
In June, Roya Hosseini (wife of Kite Runner author Khaled Hosseini; image courtesy USA for UNHCR) did a live Q&A (much like a regular Twitter chat) for an hour. She was terrific.
Other guests over the next few months included Sweet Rush and Andrew Purvis, who works in the field with UNHCR. All these guests brought a unique viewpoint to the discussion about what refugees go through and why this is an important cause to support.
In addition, we encouraged Champions to share photos, videos and as much multimedia as they could. You never know what’s going to grab your audience’s attention… to try as many ways as possible to do so.
12. Always Be Closing
A tweetathon can be a great way to raise awareness… but you want it to do something else as well, right? And that “something” is a tangible action that supports your end-objectives.
So as you’re watching the tweetathon unfold, stay alert for new people asking what the tweetathon’s about, how they can help, or people who are showing interest in the event.
Then @ them with the answer, and include the link via which they can take action. With the #bluekey tweetathons, for example, it was the link to get a key. And I like to think we did this aggressively enough, but not so aggressively as to turn them off.
My first real experience with tweetathons taught me so much, and hopefully this will be helpful to you too.
Do you have other tips to share for events of this nature? Do share, I know everyone would love to know… and I certainly would!
[…] 12 Tips to Organize and Run a Tweetathon at Waxing UnLyrical […]
[…] a Twitterchat for months now, I went searching for the best way to go about the task. I found a step-by-step blog from The Blue Key Campaign, which spent a week promoting and organizing its first one. The first […]
@miranda2x0x @dhemley @socialbrite @jdlasica @bdorman264 @tjsacks Thank you for sharing my posts!
@shonali any time!
@jenniferlspies Thank you!
@jfouts @rachaelseda Thank you both!
@shonali have a great weekend
@jfouts You too!
Great post @Shonali Shonali,
The Tweetathons for #BlueKey were exceptionally well thought out and that’s a huge part of what made it so sucessful. That and you and rachelseda ‘s unflagging energy!
@Janet Thank you! I don’t know what I’d have done without rachelseda . She’s just incredible.
@getyoufound @bazaarvoice Thanks so much!
@shonali You’re welcome! :) Thanks for the great advice.
@bdorman264 @waltercomms @sandrasays Thanks so much for sharing my tweetathon post!
@pisarose Have you done a tweetathon? And thank you for sharing!
@shonali Not yet…Just 60-minute Twitter chats. Love the idea, though!
@TheSocialCMO @kimpaysor @Sabrina_Noor Thanks so much! @GiniDietrich
RT @TheSocialCMO @socialmediaja 12 Tips to Organize and Run a Tweetathon by @shonali http://t.co/beuYhGvU via @ginidietrich
@valeriesimon Thank you!
@balemar Thanks, Beatriz!
@lisagerber Thanks! :)
I’m reading these comments while “Private Dancer” is playing the background. So unexpected. Great post Shonali.
@obrienmedia “Dutch marks or dollars…American Express will do nicely, thank you.”
One thing I got from being involved with BlueKey was I finally learned all the words to Private Dancer. Not that that was a goal or anything. :)
@kiki Next I think we’d like to see you do Proud Mary. Tina style. @obrienmedia
@obrienmedia Wasn’t that just KILLER? I smile (at the very least) every time I see it. Thank you @kiki !
@maddiegrant I couldn’t sleep last night and picked #Humanize and loved it some more all over again. #justtellingitlikeitis @JamieNotter
@allenmireles @JamieNotter yay you rock!
Fantastic instructions on how to run a tweetathon! Amazing …
@Ameenafalchetto Thanks! It was pretty wild. And here everyone thinks PR people are so sedate… :p
Soooooo many moving parts to this. What a great “manual.”
@Lisa Gerber Ha! I know, there really were. I always knew being a former actress/director would come in handy. You were a big part of this, my friend – thank you!
@shonali I’m actually reading it right now! Good stuff so far.
@allenmireles Thank you!
@shonali But of course. Excellent post.
@mdbarber It almost killed me to write that but hopefully it was worth it!
@shonali I can imagine. It’s a great post. Lots of comments too! People need to understand what these things take to do.
@Shonali did you say you wrote this on a napkin in 15 mins while having drinks with @Sean McGinnis and watching @KenMueller sip his virgin pina colada? This is incredible stuff. Seriously publish an ebook on this!
@HowieSPM I seriously wish someone would invent an app that transcribes your brainwaves… valerie merahn simon and I keep joking about that. You have no idea how many times I had to stop and “catch” the ideas that would come into my head, but run out because I can’t type as fast as I think!
And thanks, Howie! @Sean McGinnis @KenMueller
@Shonali@HowieSPMvalerie merahn simon Joking? My brain to text app is almost ready to launch :)
@ValerieSimon I’d like to be in on the beta, please! @HowieSPM
@rachaelseda Thanks. Reading now. How are things? Great here — supposed to get more snow tonight (9*18″). So glad to have teen shovelers!
@mdbarber Sure Mary! Doing great. We did have some snow flurries the other day but nothing substantial yet. Oh teenager do come in handy ;)
@rachaelseda they do come in handy. Good for other things too. Thanks for commenting & passing in my post.
@mdbarber I’m sure they eat their payments worth in your grocery bill too, hehe. You’re welcome Mary, have a good day!
Both Nakeva and Jill filmed it, still in editing. But the other one I promised for singing I posted that day.
@Tinu I saw that, but I want the CRUNK video!!!
@Shonali lol I somehow got that idea. My point was, even I don’t have it. When I do, you’ll be the first to know.
@Tinu@Shonali Hey maybe you guys can be there when I do the full recording of my dance on the National Mall. I need someone to record it and I want to be CRAZY! ;-)
@kiki@Shonali I’m game this week or next. Just need a little notice so I can get into the city.
@Tinu@Shonali What do you guys think….this weekend? Next weekend? I’m actually very flexible schedule-wise until February hits.
@kiki@Shonali Got an event Saturday, but I’m thinking about spending the night in DC so I don’t have to hire a car both ways. Should know by tomorrow, DM me on Twitter.
@Tinu@kiki I can’t do this weekend, it’s my birthday weekend – CUE THE FIREWORKS! – but after that I’m totally game, let me know!
@Shonali@Tinu Ooh! Birthday weekend? That’s worthy of its own dance! ;-)
I would like to say, once again, at how humbled and honored I am/was to be asked to serve as a #BlueKey champ. It was one of the highlights of my year, and the feeling of satisfaction I got when we met our goal of selling 6,000 keys by New Year’s Day was indescribable. I think the Tweetathons were a HUGE part of the drive, and they wouldn’t have been nearly as successful as they were without the strategies and tactics @Shonali laid out here. This is certainly a tool other organizations should look at using in their fundraising efforts.
@MattLaCasse Matt, it was terrific to have you! And you were so great about participating in a ton of tweetathons… actually, now that I remember, I think it was you and jgoldsborough who suggested we do the first one, right? See what you did!
@Shonalijgoldsborough Well, we might have come up with the initial idea, but you really built it into what it is. :)
@MattLaCasse@Shonali Agree. And idea is just an idea. The execution is what makes or breaks it. This is a great how-to post shonali that I plan to share with my colleagues and clients. And I can’t wait to dive into the case study bethkanter posted to learn more about the analytics side of things.
Just like Matt, I learned a TON from watching how you executed this campaign and from getting to participate in it. Great case study, lesson and relationship building opportunity. I hope your client is thrilled. They should be, IMO :).
@JGoldsborough I hope (and think) so (re: client) but I’m not going to speak for them! And thank you so much for being a Champion, Justin. You’ve been great! I so hope this post is helpful to your clients and colleagues as well. @MattLaCasse
Incredibly useful set of tips here! Thank you so much for sharing your experience, expertise and the step by step process in organising a tweetathon! Definitely should put together an e-book on all your tips/blog posts- very valuable indeed! :)
@Simmyc3 Thanks so much for stopping by! Well, the e-book crowd is getting louder, so I might just have to. I’m so glad you found it useful.
Hey now, You’re giving away all our secrets to success! Just kidding. What a great post and recap of all the invaluable lessons we have learned! Even with a neato step by step guide we couldn’t have done it without you, Shonali, and the incredible enthusiasm and support of our #bluekey champions!!
@lmeling Hah! So @ginidietrich and I joke about this quite often – we’re fine giving away secrets… because it’s in the execution (and more) that the magic happens … right? And as a client, Lauren, I just loved the way you were flexible with what we wanted to do, and rolled with stuff – a lot of clients don’t do that, and it was so great to feel like your partner instead of your “consultant” – so thank YOU so much!
Ahhhh I’m all excited and jazzed in my seat now reading this and reliving all the inspiring tweetathon moments as I do. Although supporting this all day took a lot of energy, it was also in a sense rejuvenating. It gave us time to ACTUALLY connect with the Champions and others. I learned things about people that I may have never known and in doing so forged friendships that I might never had the opportunity to if not for the tweetathons. I was also inspired by the stories of people out of work and struggling themselves that bought a key because they realized what they were going through was nothing compared to refugees.
When it comes down to it, the tweetathon is really about people sharing their experiences and their passion with others. The empowering part is knowing that you CAN make a difference. No matter where you might be (at one point I was in a coffee shop in VA Tech and then at the UNC vs. Tech game all while still tweetathoning it up..yes I just made up that word), you can log on and encourage someone else, no matter how busy they might be, after all it takes just a couple minutes and $5.
It’s hard to come up with another tip when all of yours were so spot on Shonali but if I could say anything, it would be don’t do it unless you can be REAL. It has to be authentic, it has to be a genuine conversation and it has to be inspired and fueled by true passion.
P.S. The Darius Rucker picture was actually during the Tweetathon…and was a complete surprise to myself. I never bother “famous” people because to me they’re people too. After just hanging out like it was nothing and talking about the game with him I couldn’t take it…I just had to tell him about the Blue Key. Just so you all know, he is the most genuine person, I always love coming across people who are a “big deal” but don’t believe it themselves.
Ok…now that I’ve left a comment novel…I think I should probably let someone else speak now ;)
@rachaelseda I completely forgot that you were indeed tweetathoning it up while on the go with Darius Rucker… that was very cool!
I think the “actual” connection that you mention was huge, Rachael – not just for you and I, but from what we’ve seen, between so many of the Champions themselves. I think we can pride ourselves on being connectors, eh?
@Shonali Maybe we should really just start a matchmaking business….and connect people in love via social media…I see a new reality tv show already hehe
@rachaelseda Have you seen that Beverly Hills Matchmaker or some such show? O.M.G. It kills me.
@rachaelseda It’s 2012…we can make up any words we want now, right? ;)
@phenomenallycha @kmueller62 Thanks! @bdorman264 That was the one thing we didn’t have. :p Thank you and @pr_in_pink too!
@kikilitalien Thank you… and for being such a great sport and #bluekey Champion!
It would be fun to trace how people got involved as champions, to trace the lineage of how you heard about it and who (if anyone) influenced your desire to get involved. :) You might already have a strong sense of that. My gut tell me there are some interesting learnings about influencer campaigns to be learned from the Bluekey campaign. Agree?
@Sean McGinnis I do agree… and I think that’s another post. What I can tell you, without looking at all the docs, is that most – probably about 80%-85% of current Champions were directly approached by me. As the posts and tweetathons started rolling out, and we introduced a “become a Blue Key Champion” form, a few people signed up via there,.
But almost everyone who signed up as a Champion was either asked directly in the early stages of the campaign, or, as they showed interest (we’d watch!), we’d approach them then… or they saw someone like @ginidietrich or @KenMueller or mdbarber talk about it and indicate interest that way. So while I can’t quantify it – at least, not right now, without spending some time on it, I’d say influence was a HUGE part of this campaign.
When you think about it, it was really all about influence… getting people on board, and then getting people to buy keys, and getting people on board to get people to buy keys…! Fascinating, no?
@Sean McGinnis I don’t know if all of the results would be humane…I still have a vivid memory of Shonali pulling my leg until I agreed ;) hahaha just kidding!!!
@ginidietrich @nlkw @adamtoporek Thank you so much!
@shonali : You’re welcome! Have a great Wednesday, Shonali!
I echo what many have already said about this post– thanks for sharing your insights and tips on organizing a successful campaign on Twitter! What I especially like about this post is that your enthusiasm and passion for your work really comes through. It’s a lot of hard work but it’s worth it if you enjoy what you do and helping others be successful as well. Congrats again :)
@Krista Thanks, Krista!
I was thinking more about this, and though it’s point #12, I’m going to stress the “always be closing” bit. This is not always easy for people to do, but IMHO it’s critical. Once you’ve started getting people’s interest, you have to grab them in the moment. So, for example, if I saw someone responding to a tweet mattlacasse put out, asking about the campaign, or what the #bluekey was, I’d @ them immediately, with a link for more info and something like, “Did you get YOUR #bluekey yet? It’s just $5!” Maybe not in my very first reply, but in a follow-up, if they responded. And I don’t think we’d have sold as many keys during the tweetathons if we hadn’t done that.
I understand this approach is not for everyone, and like I said earlier, there is a fine line between being just “aggressive” enough and “too” aggressive. Based on what happened, I think we stayed the right side of that line.
@Shonali@Krista All comes back to that “call to action” thing, right? People probably aren’t going to read your mind. If you want something from them, you’ve got to ask them. Just make sure we’re asking nicely!
@MattLaCasse Exactly! @Krista
Really, really great recap of, not just the tweetathons, but the campaign overall. We’ll be asking to use some of this for Spin Sucks Pro. :)
@ginidietrich Well, now I KNOW I’ve made it if it’ll go on SSP… woo hoo!
I think I have a few more posts coming as well on the campaign. I feel like I could write a book on “Lessons Learned from the Blue Key”… but if I post them to the blog, people are more likely to read ’em. :p You were a huge part of the campaign, Gini – you know that – and I will be talking more about that later!
@Shonali@ginidietrich Please don’t. She’s barely tolerable as it is. Any more mad props from you and I may have to wrote her out of my will.
@Sean McGinnis Please. Like I’m already in your will. I think not, baldy.
@ginidietrich One of these days I’m going to grow my hair out just to see if you can come up with another term of endearment for me…
@Sean McGinnis At least she didn’t call you Popeye. @ginidietrich
@Sean McGinnis@ginidietrich If all else fails you could always invest in hair plugs…maybe we could raise money….we could try a Tweetathon!! ;)
@Shonali You should write the blog posts and then compile them into an ebook.
@ginidietrich That’s what I was thinking! Thank you… I will ping you when I’m ready to do that, because I’ve never done an ebook before…
@Shonali I can help you design it, it will be fab ;)
@rachaelseda I’m going to take you up on that. You may live to regret that offer… :p
@Shonali No no I won’t at all, I’m kind of excited. I will just make you feed me in payment and when you see how much I can eat, YOU may regret taking me up on the offer muahahha
Great stuff, Shonali, and I have to say, it’s been incredible being a part of this. I had never heard of this cause before I saw you talking about it, and you hooked me. You deserve a lot of credit, along with Rachael, for how well you pull these things together. Even the way in which you use SM to communicate with all of us in between the events and to give updates. It’s great!
It really is amazing to see how something like this can work, especially as many of us have never met in person. The possibilities are mind-boggling!
@KenMueller Thank you! I loved doing this – like I said to @JenFongSpeaks , it was tiring – remember that video I posted?! – but it was so exhilarating as well. You’re right – the possibilities are endless.
I was a little alarmed when I started writing the post yesterday, because it was sooo long… but it just felt right to focus on the tweetathon for one whole post, rather than break it up into Part I & Part II. One of the concerns I have is that while events like these can be really successful, people might underestimate what goes into pulling them off. That’s why I did such an exhaustive post. I’m sure I left something out, but after about 3 hours of writing, my eyes were rolling, LOL.
And thank you so much for being part of the campaign, Ken. You did so much that you didn’t need to. I’ll be eternally grateful.
@Shonali@JenFongSpeaks I think the length is fine, because anyone who wants to replicate this sort of event needs real details, not just a cursory overview. And sometimes when something is important to you, it requires a bit more than a typical post. I wrote a post last week that was that way. I had things to say that I felt had to be said, and it ended up a lot longer than most of my posts, but it also did very well for me in terms of traffic and engagement, so…ya never know!
@KenMueller Exactly, that’s what I felt. The overview is all very well, but people want the “how to,” and hopefully I included enough of that here.
I remember your long-ass post from last week. It was great. @JenFongSpeaks
@KenMueller@Shonali@JenFongSpeaks The other thing about the lenght is it allowed people from different time zones to participate like our little eskimo mdbarber
@rachaelseda Yes, that’s a very good point! @KenMueller @JenFongSpeaks mdbarber
@rachaelseda@KenMueller@Shonali@JenFongSpeaks The time zone issue is really important for national/international events of any kind. It’s something West Coast people are extremely aware. We appreciate feeling part of things and do notice when we are/aren’t.
@mdbarber I think one of the things we did well was keep reinforcing the time zones… no? And I’m really glad that you and chillygal , not to mention so many more friends from Alaska were able to participate. You were a key [sic] part of the effort! @rachaelseda @KenMueller @JenFongSpeaks
@Shonali It was good, especially later in the group of tweetathons. We (the AK team) also did a better job of making the tweetathon local when it was the so-called “Alaska hour.” I think it’s really important to have those localizations too.
Another thing we did in the last two events was to reach out to the person in the hour before us to tell them what we were planning. That not only provided a transition/continuity but also some fun between the two communities and personalities. Don’t you agree lisagerber and @chillygal ?
@Shonali@KenMueller@JenFongSpeaksmdbarber Although I apparently can’t spell…*length. Sadly it was always the one thing I was good at in school!
@mdbarberlisagerber@chillygal I completely agree. That was a great idea. and as I type this, I’m listening to kikilitalien singing. WOW, Kiki!! AWESOME!!! LOL. You do it better than Tina!!
Agree. It was helpful to gear our hour towards our local audience, and chosing the hour where we felt we’d reach the most. Doing our research before, being prepared, providing local stats on refugees, responding to questions right away about BlueKey, asking locals that are heavy tweeters before the tweetathon to participate – even if it was just to RT – was crucial. It was fun, and meeting some new folks through this campaign has been great. Wonderful and thorough post, Shonali. You made it easy for us to participate.
@rachaelseda This is what you get for being a texting maniac. @KenMueller @JenFongSpeaks mdbarber
@Lisa Gerber She does! @chillygal @kiki
@chillygal I love the meeting part. And I’m so glad you had fun… it was such a rush, wasn’t it?
@Lisa Gerberlisagerber@chillygalkikilitalien Awww…thank you! Just wait until I wrap up my 2nd challenge (dancing to “Love Today” by Mika on the National Mall).
@Shonali@KenMueller@JenFongSpeaks HAHA I was just thinking of the video you posted and I was wondering why that wasn’t front and center!
@rachaelseda Because not everyone gets to see Shonali at Night. You’re all special. :p @KenMueller @JenFongSpeaks
Great post Shonali, and such an excellent overview of all that’s involved in making a Tweetathon successful. I think it’s a really exciting model that many non-profits can tap into to generate both funds and enthusiasm for the cause. Your leadership was also essential…the glue that held it all together. Great job!
@JenFongSpeaks That’s so kind of you, Jen – thank you!
I have to say the tweetathons exhausted me. As you saw, there was so much planning that went into it, and then the staffing. BUT, with all that, they were strangely energizing as well, and all of you who participated went all in… and that made all the difference. Thank you so much!
What an in-depth post Shonali! Great stuff. You did an amazing job with the campaign and it was a pleasure to be a part of it.
However, with this recent picture, you are turning our canine spokesmodel into quite the diva! As soon as she saw the post, she called her agent and requested a designer dog bowl and double walks. We’re in negotiations now. :)
@adamtoporek Thanks, Adam – and I can’t tell you how much I appreciate you coming on board. When you offered a match during one of the tweetathons, that really helped get us moving.
So your girl is being a diva, eh? Let’s face it, she’s gorgeous enough to get away with it. :p
Thanks so much for stopping by!
@adamtoporek She really should get a cut…I mean cmon…
@rachaelseda If I give in on these demands, next thing I know it’s Perrier in the water bowl, collars from Tiffany, and I’m stuck with a Real Housedog of Beverly Hills. I have to draw the line somewhere! :)
Of course, the reality is, with that face, she gets her way a lot already.
@adamtoporek What about caviar for dinner? Face it, Adam. You have a princess on your hands. :p @rachaelseda
RT @shonali Today’s post: 12 tips on running a tweetathon http://t.co/eTEJsPzd – Very useful! #socialmedia
@simmyc3 Thanks so much, would much appreciate a comment over at WUL if you have the time. :)
@shonali Hi, you are more than welcome and yes will definitely leave a comment!
@simmyc3 Wonderful, thank you!
@shonali You are very welcome :)
@shonali We’re reading each other’s minds. Waxing UnLyrical made my newsletter this morning. :)
@decillis Ooh, sweet! I wanna see!!! Please?
@shonali Ha! I just do a rundown of articles and the managing negative comments post was included.
@decillis Nice! I thought @Cision did a great job with that.
@shonali @decillis Sweet!! Thank you :)