The mainstream media is shrinking. We’ve established that, and whether it’s temporary or permanent, only time will tell. In the mean time, we still need to get people through the door. Here are three examples of what some companies are doing to take advantage of new media.
The British Columbia Institute of Technology (where I took my small business course in 2007), in a bit to bring in new students, hosted a 67-hour live-blogathon. They Twittered, blogged and uploaded video from Wednesday night through Saturday afternoon. BCIT was also gave away $5000 in tuition to five people. You can see information on Three Blog Nights here, and the blog here.
Meanwhile, in Portland, a company called Portland Centre Stage invited a bunch of people to come to the opening of thier latest show, Apollo, and Twitter it. The experiment was at least partially successful–thier show was top five in Twitter traffic that night. Read more about this experiment here.
And in January, The Vancouver Opera invited three bloggers to come and live blog and Twitter a performance of their
latest Opera, Carmen. The show was a sell-out. They repeated the process this last Saturday night with Rigoleto. You can read the Vancouver Opera blog here.
What I think is most interesting about these three examples is that they were a success (at least to some degree) on two different levels. The actual event of blogging and Twittering created a buzz around the event in the moment. But, later on, all three of these stories were picked up by bloggers and the mainstream media. Read Gillian Shaw’s story about Three Blog Nights in the Vancouver Sun. And read about Rebecca Bolwitt’s experience of live blogging the Opera in the Vancouver Courier.
What’s happening is that businesses, arts-related or otherwise, are turning to new media for publicity, because they see that the traditional media is failing. And, while that is working, they are also reaping bonus rewards: stories in the traditional media about their innovations in social media marketing.