Saturday, July 13, 2013

#AASW6 Social media bootcamp

A couple of months ago, a friend of mine informed me about a conference that is going to be held in Ghana -- the African Agricultural Science Week. I had no idea what it was about. All I knew was that, he wanted to know if I was interested in being considered as a social media reporter for the event. Hell yeah!!!
Following my receipt of an invitation letter, I am in Accra to join other social media reporters cover the event. A pre-requisite (of sorts) is for us to undergo a 2-day bootcamp on how to cover this particular event. Today is the first day. The facilitator is an energetic, enthusiastic fellow (who likes to be called Grandpa).

Peter (Grandpa) coaching his enthusiastic team!

We first looked at what Social media is and some of the characteristics it has:
  • It is on-line
  • It allows sharing and participation
  • It is free and easy to use
  • It is instantaneous (immediate)
  • It promotes networking and personal interactions
  • It allows anybody to publish just about anything

We then looked at the plethora of social media tools available. Peter put them into groups in his 'legendary' bucket:

As an individual/organisation, you need to have a strategy to get your message across to your target audience:
Illustrated 'seduction' strategy
Live/Vapour media vs. Permanent media


You can read more about defining a social media strategy here.
One cool thing I learnt was how to identify whether a celebrity sent a tweet by themselves or their PROs. This also works for an account that is being coordinated by a number of individuals. The trick is to check for a signature at the end of a tweet. An example is shown below. It has the signature, ^JG:
It's been a very insightful and exciting day. The week promises to be great.
You can follow the event's blog for updates, as well as check the organiser's blog.
Don't forget to look out for the #AASW6 hashtag on twitter.

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