It started with a tweet from Jason Baker. He had been in contact with Guy Kawasaki and Guy wanted to meet the local twitter community at a Tweetup. Guy is here in town until Sunday morning enjoying a gauntlet of Olympic Hockey. Jason contacted Stephen Jagger and I and asked if we could put something together. A Tweetup is a loosely organized meeting of people who are connected on Twitter. (Tweetup in-depth explanation here) The purpose is to take all of those virtual online connections and meet offline to cement relationships, share ideas, or in this case cheer on Team Canada. We contacted several venues and found that the Caprice on Granville would host us and our Twitterati for a Hockey celebration — but we had to bring 200 people of course. With less than a week to plan Stephen, Jason and I enlisted the help of the International Internet Marketing Association and Social Media Club Vancouver. A couple people started the idea but once the ball was rolling the community really self-organized and we easily met and exceeded the 200 person number by the first period of the Canada-Switzerland game this past Thursday.
Although we invited the world, most people were local that attended; I have never seen a Tweetup of this size in Vancouver where everyone came out to connect in person. What the Olympics has done is give us Vancouverites a reason to relax, connect more often and have more fun. What was great of course is that Canada won (sorry my Swiss friends) and Guy Kawasaki the most Tweeted about personality online showed up after the game to say hello. Over all it was a fantastic demonstration of how social media and virtual connections can create real community and real relationships. For more Tweetups in Vancouver visit “VancouverTweetup.”
Victory Goal Video (by @jlate)
O’Canada Video (by @jlate)
Shane Gibson is co-author of Sociable! How Social Media is Turning Sales and Marketing Upside-down and is an active member of the Vancouver Board of Trade and Social Media Club Vancouver. Learn more about Shane at http://ShaneGibson.tel or follow him on Twitter @ShaneGibson.