Today was the last day of the ORSM09 and it was such a great experience to meet with all the people who were discovering the power of social media. A big thanks one more time to Hotcakes for letting me tag along.
Yesterday I wrote about how Twitter is the hot new thing at the ORSM09 and today I used the ORSM09 Twitter account to see who was at the show and talking about it. After about 15 minutes of reading through the RT’s I found who I wanted to speak with. However, most of them had already left for home (If I can get a hold of them then there will probably be a follow-up post).
However from the people who were still around I got some great information and I had the chance to talk to the guys from Gerber, EcogearBags, GoMotionGear, National Geographic Maps, and the one and only ClimberGirl.
Gerber makes a lot of great knives and yesterday’s post had a picture of their latest knife, which I got after they posted it via twitter. The ORSM09 was their first stab (pun intended) at social media. They haven’t done much more than “fiddle around” with it so far. However the Wyoming based company they bought back in 2006 (Brunton) has been very active.
Brunton has had a Twitter account for over a year and recently have picked up the pace and have been engaging their community more through it. Their Twitter stream is broadcast on their home page and a they have a FaceBook Fan Page that they use to distribute information about products and to communicate with their fans.
While I might have expected more from a brand whose parent company is so heavily engaged in social media (Fiskars) but it’s nice to see Brunton leading the charge with Gerber not too far behind.
This company is out to save the world one bag at a time and while their marketing folks had already gone home I had a chance to talk to their rep. He said social media is something that they know they need to do. They haven’t begun to do any research or anything else but the ORSM09 was their first run at twitter. This will be a brand to watch and see what they end up doing.
I had the chance to talk with the founder of GoMotion Gear Jonathan Craig, and he was very excited about his company and social media. He said that by using social media he has been able to get to know his customers better and that one of their goals is integration.
Johnathan has begun using FaceBook to engage customers and fans alike, and he sees no reason to slow down and only building and learning more. They actually debut their Twitter account at the Boston Marathon and he liked the results so much it just became part of the business.
During the ORSM09 Jonathan used Twitter not just to talk about what he was selling, but to connect. He found and met with people via the ORSM09 twitter stream and met with fellow retailers and fans alike.
National geographic Maps
Another brand just starting to dip their toes into social media is this non-profit. After talking to their Marketing Specialist Kris Miller I can tell they are quite excited about getting involved, but she definitely knows some of the frustrations.
They have begun using social media to engage their fans and outdoors types alike to help make the maps and guides that will be helpful to the people who use them. This has also been a bit frustrating as their offers and engagement attempts haven’t always been met with a ton of response. My only advice to that is keep at it. Keep engaging, keep building, and soon you’ll start getting the response you’d like to see.
Sara Lingafelter blogs at RockClimberGirl.com, Tweets as TheClimberGirl, and is a lawyer from Washington. She was one of the most prolific twitter users there at the ORSM09 and I found out about events like the JetBoil cook off from her, but why was she there? She was there to meet people she’d met online in real life.
It’s pretty obvious that this show was right up her alley just based on her likes, but it was her Twitter use that made her stand out for me. Her and the other folks attending like her that used Twitter to meet and converse with new people and discover all the great stuff going on.
When it comes to social media the outdoor retail sector seems to be growing and the ORSM09 was many brands first attempt. It was great to see and I hope they continue to grow and explore.
Thanks for reading,
Josh “Shua” Peters