Sunday, August 07, 2011

LAPD Learn Sharing Key to Social

Watching Fox News this afternoon, a package on how the Los Angeles Police used social media to spread the word about the shut down of the 405.

Ever wonder where the phrase "carmageddon" came from?

Not the media. It did come from Tom Hanks and several other celebrities who co-tweeted info to help LAPD spread the word about the coming shutdown, and to encourage people to stay in their local neighborhoods for the weekend.

One of the PIO's for LAPD was on Fox explaining that well, if they can get information directly to people, they will do it through Facebook and Twitter. It works even better when they get others to spread the word also. Here's a solid breakdown of the whole campaign via Crasstalk.

Can you say . . . reverse distribution network?

Look, have fun with this. Organize your friends into that system that can spread your word. We are doing that right now with the info about the upcoming bus trip to LSU for Northwestern State's football team. I'm making sure that it isn't just locked into an athletic department twitter feed, but spread around our campus' new social media team -- a committee of everyone who manages official social media feeds on behalf of the campus.

Perfect example, Ashton Kutcher: "LAPD askd me 2tweet: 405fwy btwn 10 & 101 will b closed July16-17. In xchange I would like a free pass on that stoplight tickt IT WAS YELLOW."

Can you imagine the 1990s PR horror at that? But the word got out. And the story was a happy ending with less than expected disruptions and a earlier than anticipated reopening.

This is a reminder to all those who listened to the NCS4 talk and to my friends in both college sports and university media relations -- use your social networks to enhance, to reinforce, to drive your traditional media releases. Just remember the golden rule -- it's not 140 characters, its 120 or less and don't be lazy and double-post the same thing.

People, it works.

Resistance is futile.

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