A celebrity that gets social media? I know shocking…
We have all seen it happen, whether it’s on Twitter, Facebook or MySpace. A celebrity hops onto one of the sites or has someone representing them get on the site and they do what? Well, often times they don’t do much besides broadcast promo’s about their next show, movie, or where they’re going to be at… you get the drill. An interesting post written by Brett Borders titled, “Dear Web ‘Celebrity’ Who Never Follows Anyone Back” takes the issue to the level of calling these celebs snobs.
I don’t think I’ll go as far as calling these celebrities or their managers snobs, they are just misinformed. Maybe they think it makes them seem more famous to not follow anyone. Maybe they are afraid of having an out of control twitterstream? It is very similar to putting on those celebrity shades and withdrawing from the world. If celebrities are worried about their twitterstream (which I’m sure they’re not) they could use a tool like TweetDeck or Seesmic Desktop to solve that problem. What celebrities are telling you when they don’t follow you is that they don’t care what you have to say. Who wants to be a fan of that? Send in your fan letter you worked so hard on and it goes straight to the trashcan?
Oprah Winfrey Follower Numbers / Ashton Kutcher Follower Numbers:
The trend is changing
Now the good news is there are some celebrities that are starting to get it. You should take screen shots of celebrities accounts that don’t follow anyone because soon you will most likely notice a large portion of them following people back. Why? They may not even do it to listen to you, but instead for pure competition and marketing. Let’s take a look at a managed celebrity account that is starting to follow thousands of people and another account that has shown a similar trend. Below you will find @BritneySpears and @JimmyEatWorld following stats from Twitterholic.com.
With the competition brutal due to Twitter going mainstream, celebrities are starting to clamor for more follows to be ranked higher in the overall Twitter follower rankings. When looking at the column data it is from left to right: Date, Followers, Following.
You can see the incremental amounts that were increased from a mere 1,000 people that the Britney Spears account was following to three days later an additional 9,000. The action of following an additional 9,000 people resulted in a follower jump of 23,837. However, the biggest monumental jump was when an additional 58,000 people were followed which increased the people following the Britney Spears account by 581,000 additional followers.
Another example is with the Jimmy Eat World account. You can see the direct relation from the point that when they started following thousands of people their account is directly effected in people following them. Obviously following 0 people the @JimmyEatWorld account wasn’t doing too well! Two months later after following 70k they have gained 106,000 additional followers. Do you see a trend?
As celebrities, corporations, TV shows and brands observe this trend most of them will fall in line and end up following back. If they don’t, they’ll be passed by other celebrities and identities that are willing to follow people back and allow a two way conversation.
Why will celebrities follow people for more followers?
I’m quite certain you can answer this yourself. However, I do know some people that don’t seem to get it. From a marketing perspective, if you were Britney Spears and you were releasing a new album would you like to tell 100,000 people about it every day or 1,000,000? If you are Ashton, it’s movies, if you are Oprah it’s your show, book club, magazine. You get the point, right?
Now obviously this method doesn’t just apply to celebrities. It applies to all Twitter users really. Let’s be honest about that, right? Corporations, Pizza Companies, Hosting Companies, you name it. If there’s a message to be given, this new trend will creep into every corner of Twitter. Essentially they will follow the leader.
One problem remains: Engagement
So one problem has been solved. From the article mentioned above by Brett Borders which has been retweeted nearly 900 times, you can see that the Twitter majority feels celebs should follow back. Problem solved, the trend is moving in that direction and should tend do so in the future. There is still a problem however. Most of these celebrity accounts still don’t get it. They don’t engage, they don’t talk to their fans, they don’t ask them questions, they don’t take polls, they don’t have contests or even acknowledge the existence of a fan. So one problem remains, while they may follow people, they still don’t communicate with them. I think there is a way to change this trend as well.
The everyday folks on Twitter should support celebrities, brands, companies and organizations that have open communication with their followers. If people that use Twitter in a favorable way get more attention, responses, retweets and press than the people that shun their fans, eventually the tide will turn.
I have noticed a particular celebrity account on Twitter due to my friend Susan Elaine (@BuzzEdition) bringing it to my attention, that has shocked me more than once. The account is for the band Collective Soul and can be found at @collective_soul. What I find so simply amazing about these guys is that they actually respond to fans. They retweet fans tweets. They read blogs by users on Twitter. They make exclusive videos just for their Twitter fans. I could go on, but let me put it this way. These guys are extremely successful and have went Multi-Platinum 7 times in the U.S., 18 times in Canada with 7 #1 hits and guess what? They still treat every one of their fans as a person. Amazing huh?
Before they were even jumping in the Twitter pool, this band was participating in Social Media. They have a phone line where fans can call in and leave a message. They randomly call back fans and talk to them. Even more interesting and voyeuristic (just like Twitter) you can listen to the fans messages yourself. I have taken a quick recording of a few fans messages. Crazy huh? Social Media with a telephone.
After talking with @BuzzEdition and @Collective_Soul I got the news that they are launching a blog contest that’s giving away crazy prizes! It just proved to me that these guys truly do get Social Media. Allowing the fans, followers and bloggers to be apart of the party is a great interactive way to be real. I’m thinking that to prove to celebrities and big brands on Twitter that have decided to “broadcast” instead of interact they should be given a wake-up call. By participating in this blog contest a knod can be given to the celebrities that are doing things right in Social Media. Here are the details of the blog contest:
Collective Soul Blog Contest
These guys are giving out some awesome prizes for participation!
1st Prize: 2 Tickets to any show, 2 backstage passes, AUTOGRAPHED GUITAR and a copy of new album
2nd Prize: 2 Tickets, Autographed Guitar Pick and a Copy of the new Album
3rd Prize: Copy of New Album, Autographed Picture, Autographed Drumsticks & Guitar Pick
The first 10 entrants into the contest will receive an Autographed Picture in the mail!
How to Enter
Write a blog post talking about Collective Soul that includes the following things:
1. Include a link to the Collective Soul Twitter Account
3. Mention new tour starting in 2009
Once you’ve written your blog post leave a link to your blog post in the comment section below. This will add some traffic and a backlink to your blog. Also TWEET a message to @Collective_Soul on Twitter announcing your new blog post like:
I just entered the @Collective_Soul Blog Contest here: YOURURL
Collective Soul has agreed to Retweet your blog post to all of their fans! (Your 15 minutes of fame!)
How Collective Soul Chooses The Winners
The band will pick the top 10 entries out of the all the submissions. It’s recommended that you be creative and let people know how you feel about Collective Soul, their social media interaction, how their music has effected your life or any other creative way you want to present the band. The only requirements that you need to include in your blog post are listed above.
Once Collective Soul has chosen the top 10 entries the final Top 3 winners will be chosen by you! An online poll will be held on Twitter to allow you to vote for the final winner. The top 3 contestants will win the prizes in the order of their votes!
Terms and Conditions
The contest will end on June 15th at 11:59pm Pacific Standard Time. The Collective Soul band will then choose the winners and the online poll will start within a week.
Blog posts must be for public viewing and not private! (ie. MySpace Blogs can’t be seen by anyone but your friends)
Anyone suspected of rigging the votes in the poll will be removed and disqualified from the contest.
If you have any questions just send @Collective_Soul
a message on Twitter!
I hope that gives you an idea of the coming trends of celebrities and gives you one way you can fight back. You can accelerate the trend by supporting the celebrities that will actually interact and engage on Twitter. In the end, if most celebrities adopt the trend, Twitter will be a better place to hang your hat.
Peace, Love and Chicken Grease,
If you like this article, Tweet this message to your Twitter stream.
RT @webaddict A celebrity that gets social media? I know shocking… http://bit.ly/twittercelebrity #sm #socialmedia
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