It’s a Twitter Christmas for Retail

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ABC World News took a look at the “Twitter Christmas” in this report about how retail companies are using social media resources like Twitter and Facebook to reach out to the public.

I had a chance to speak about our own @Twelpforce in the report, as I answered incoming tweets while on-camera.

How About a Little Twelp From Your Friends?

Phil Wilson has a nice piece on the Minnov8.com website in which he asks about the success of Best Buy’s Twitter-based @Twelpforce.

As a member of Twelpforce, my favorite line comes from our own Twelpforce lead, John Bernier, who explains that, “We’ve been able to meet our customers at the crossroads of need and time…Being there when and where they need us.”

That is, I think, really the best way to measure our progress on the project.

Dear Mom, I Enlisted in the Twelpforce

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@TwelpforceThis week marked the official launch of Best Buy’s @Twelpforce, which allows customers to connect with regular employees for questions and support with products and services they are looking at, or have already bought.

TechCrunch has been very positive on the idea of connecting customers with employees, calling it, “a phenomenal way to engage with Twitter users and social media in general.”

I’ve had an opportunity to join in on the experience as a Geek Squad Agent, and it’s been eye-opening in just how powerful the idea is. I’ve seen hundreds of customer-employee interactions since the launch, and it’s wonderful to see how welcomed the responses are by the public.

I think the thing that makes this idea so unique is that it’s not just another contact point for a company public relations team. Instead, it’s made up of regular employees from around the world, 700+ at last count. The expectation for participation, according to the publicly-available website is that @Twelpforce members, “just have to be curious, proactive, and helpful- much of the same stuff you do everyday.”

I look forward to more @Twelpforce twittering in my future!

Best Buy to Help With Spring Cleaning

Best Buy has announced that they are rolling out an electronics recycling program to all of their US stores on February 15th. The program will allow consumers to bring in 2 devices per day, including a wide range of items, such as computers, VCRs, and some types of televisions.

Living Large in Los Angeles

I had a chance to head to Los Angeles this past week for an opportunity to take part in a holiday commercial for my employer. They had originally put out a request for employees to participate that received hundreds of responses, of which they picked 200 to fly into our corporate campus to do a video interview. From there, they picked 30 employees for the trip to California.

The flight in was comfortable and the September weather in Los Angeles was amazing, coming from Ohio. Although I was only going to be in town 2 days, and working most of the 2nd day, I made sure to get out into the Burbank area surrounding the hotel I was put in.

Monday came quicker than I expected, which meant lots of preparation before going into the stage area. There were wardrobe and make-up trailers to be gone through, forms to be filled out and directions to be given. Eventually, I was taken into stage 6.

The technology on the set was fascinating, with wires and monitors everywhere. Having a black and white uniform, with its stark and contrasting colors, meant that the lighting crew had to spend extra time trying to get the light and shadows in the area just right so that everything would look its best. However, the crew was polite and patient, so things went pretty smoothly and comfortably.

Once they were ready, I spent the better part of the next hour and a half standing in front of the green screen answering questions about my job for the director and following his directions on where to look and speak. It flew by, though, and before I knew it, I was back in the trailer where the other employees to be filmed that day were.

Although I have no idea if anything I filmed will make it into the holiday commercials, I’m still extremely glad I had the opportunity to participate.