I remember how much Twitter confounded me in the early days. They can’t mean just 140 characters at a time. It’s not that much, is it?
After all, I talk a lot. If I meet someone new – in or out of work – I normally leave knowing that person’s star sign, how they take their tea and his/her favourite member of One Direction. Same with social media – I like to say a lot all at once over Facebook. When Twitter first poked its beak out, the prospect of sharing less seemed a little too much for me.
However, as time’s gone on I’ve learned one thing: brevity can be beautiful. With a few words, we can say quite a lot and give a particular sentiment real impact. Think about it, especially ahead of Valentine’s weekend, everyone always talks about the power of ‘those three little words.’ That’s the best thing about Twitter for me – you have to refine your message to the point where it really counts.
It’s because of this that I’m especially excited to be working on Branded3’s latest Twitter-based initiative: #Socialis. We’re hoping to achieve the perfect cross section of how society really feels about social media using Twitter itself.
Anyone and everyone is invited to start a tweet with ‘#Socialis’ that answers ‘What does Social Media Mean to Me?’ We’ll be launching a live curation process from 6pm this Sunday over our @social_is_ account, to coincide with Social Media Week.
Over 140 hours, we’ll ‘favourite’ our favourite 140 hashtagged tweets, each of 140 characters (do you see a theme emerging here?) The final result will be a book limited to a run of….take a wild guess….that’s right, 140 copies.
Proceeds will all be donated to anti-cyber bullying charity ‘The Cybersmile Foundation,’ established in 2010 to tackle issues such as social isolation, self-harm and eating disorders brought about by bullying online. It’s a very worthy cause run by some very hardworking people.
So far, we’re absolutely delighted that the campaign has already caught the attention of industry figureheads such as Laila Takeh, Unicef’s head of digital engagement and Adobe’s head of social strategy Jeremy Waite. They’re not alone either. Several high-profile individuals have also shared their thoughts and here are some of their contributions to inspire you:
@RaeEarl, author of ‘My Mad, Fat Teenage Diary’:
#socialis being able to say important things very loudly without shouting. And for telling people I love them. Especially William Shatner.
— Rae Earl (@RaeEarl) January 29, 2014
@domburch, Social Media Manager, ASDA:
What’s social media to me? It’s less about the media & more about the social. How organisations communicate & collaborate is key #Socialis
— Dom Burch (@domburch) January 30, 2014
@kelvinnewman, organiser of #BrightonSEO:
#socialis a great enabler and multiplier, it’s opened doors for me and made what I do much bigger than I ever would have hoped for otherwise
— kelvin newman (@kelvinnewman) January 13, 2014
Just as these wonderful people have already tweeted, there’s no need for you to wait either. Curation may kick off at 6pm on Sunday, but nothing’s stopping anyone from tweeting right this very moment.
We’ve all got our fingers crossed that #Socialis enjoys the same success as our Competwition service and Twitition, which has extended the reach of more than half a million petitions and helped achieved more than 11 million signatures overall. It’s even been used by the likes of Jamie Oliver and Lady Gaga.
Luckily, you don’t have to be a meat-dress wearing megastar to be involved in #Socialis. If you would like to contribute to this unique project, then please join us by answering the question ‘What Does Social Media Mean to You?’ in a tweet starting #Socialis.
Otherwise, if you’d like to submit an illustration for the book, just reply to your favourite #Socialis contribution and attach an image.
We’ll be keeping an eager eye out!