The first thing I remind people whenever I’m asked to expound on social media is this: social media was created to connect real people. This is not another mass communication outlet to share your news or advertise your brand. If you dig down to the fundamental purpose of social media it is to connect people.
The reason I remind people of this is that too often social change campaigns use Facebook and Twitter like outlets. They push out e-newsletters, press releases, breaking news without any sort of personalizing voice. The reason people often connect to images, humor, or stories is because they help us connect to an issue on a personal level.
Which is why I encourage quirk. Quirk is a peculiar way of speaking, doing, and being that defines you from everyone else. Quirk can be engaging, personal, and authentic. Making your social media campaign quirky can define you, make you stand out, and connect you to other quirky selves.
We hear safety messages every day: avoid down power lines, don’t talk to strangers, mind the gap. We often don’t pay much mind to them until a truly great campaign makes us stop in our tracks.. The Melbourne Metro’s Dumb Ways to Die campaign is a perfect example of using quirk to make us all pay attention. Their video combines a delightful song with the gruesome deaths of adorable characters to make a video you just have to watch and share. Like Smokey the Bear and McGruff the Crime Dog before them, these mascots of safety will help ensure no real life human will join the ranks of these colorful blob folk.
2. Sue the Trex
Who better to promote the Chicago’s Field Museum and educate the public then the museum’s main attraction: Sue the Trex? On any day you can find Sue on Twitter sharing information on her dino brethren, upcoming events, and hilarious insights into her past and present life. I might not follow the Field Museum but you best believe I’m tuning in to listen to what Sue has to say next:
DoSomething.org knows their audience: youth. From One Direction Quizzes to their own Harlem Shake video to The Activist Text campaign, DoSomething.orh does a great job of putting their social change spin onto today’s hottest trends. Plus, I just love the way their Tumblr combines gifs and volunteer truths to leave me in stitches.
Want to get quirky? If you’re in the Baltimore area, I’ll be waxing poetic on social media at the Mesh Baltimore Skillshare on March 2. My session entitled “How to Bring Your Quirk to Social Media,” will help you build an online presence that reflects the real you. Mesh Baltimore is an awesome, all day event where people across the community come to teach their passion. After you pump me for information on creating a wacky, bizarre, and totally awesome social media presence, you can attend sessions on writing about food, organizing your life, and homebrewing. Check out Mesh Baltimore and sign up for the Skillshare here.