The call went out and the lemmings went forward: they met and by the glow of their handheld devices, you could picture them all going over a cliff, tweeting all the way down to the sea. Or perhaps it was one of the largest business networking events ever held, covering 725 locations in more than 93 countries. Either way, you get a big splash.
When online tech news giant Mashable decided that there should be a Social Media Day, there was one. Their Facebook page explained it: “As far as we know, there is no official Social Media Day. But we do think there should be one. So we invite you to celebrate the revolution of media becoming a social dialogue by attending or organizing a Social Media Day meetup in your area on June 30. What better way to celebrate social media than connecting with other enthusiasts in your area?”
The glass is either half full of lemmings or business people networking. At the two Social Media Day events I attended, there was a lot of learning and business happening: Learning about social media, tools, ideas and best practices. The sharing of questions, answers and ideas by new and long-time social media practitioners from different industries alike kept conversations lively and interesting.
This was the first Tweetup for Emily, also known as @eberg910, who attended a Social Media Day event at a Manchester, New Hampshire restaurant. “I’m starting to love interacting through social media. This was something new for me and I’m trying to get involved in different social media communities and I thought the tweetup would be a great start.” Her friend Maddy (@Mastaub ) found “It’s surprisingly easy to talk to people if you’ve been following their tweets, because you already know a lot about what they do and who they are.”
Organizer of one of the largest Social Media Day events on the planet in Boston, Massachusetts, Joselin Mane (@BostonTweetup) understands what Maddy is talking about. The biggest advantage to a social media event or tweetup, according to Mane, is that you can start building relationships before the event. “In these types of meetups, you know going into the event who will be there [as the registration is listed online]. You can check their credentials, blog and Facebook page so you can connect with them before the event. It facilitates better relationship building because you can leverage the time before the event. What’s cool is that if you know one person and they know several people, it enhances the experience and you don’t feel like an outsider.” This also secures longer lasting friendships and business relationships.
Mane, and the other organizers had just over a week to pull a venue and agenda together. Since @BostonTweetup has helped organize these events before, their connections helped it secure the venue and grow quickly “because that’s what we do.”
The night was successful for Emily. “I was able to meet local people who are doing the same things I’m learning about and trying to do myself. Being more active on Twitter is something I’m trying to figure out so it was really beneficial for me to meet people who are already pros at it.”
Maddy found the same: “I’ve found that people who are using Twitter for social meeting marketing purposes tend to be interesting and involved people. I wanted to hear about what some of the most innovative people in my community were up to. It was a success on all counts!”