We at Beekeeper Group often tout the benefits of social media for bringing traditional media attention to your association/corporation/nonprofit, but now I have a unique and personal case study.
You’ve probably heard of Uber – a new on-demand car service that delivers a luxury sedan to your exact location via GPS with the touch of a mobile app for just slightly more than the cost of a taxi. Of course, the DC Taxi Cab Commission wasn’t very pleased when this innovative car service launched in DC, leading to a “sting operation” performed by DC Cab Commissioner Ron Linton in an attempt to shut down the service.
Fearful that the lack of regulations on something that is not quite a “taxi” and not quite a “car service” could stunt this successful step in innovation, I joined the fight to save Uber! A Twitter hashtag, a Facebook group, and a few tweets from my @DCconcierge account later, I was helping to lead the campaign against Mr. Linton’s attempts to shut Uber DC down.
Yes, Uber is alive and well today. But the story continued, since the battle that started on Twitter and Facebook was later picked up by local blogs, and then, the likes of TIME magazine. And when the journalist Andrew Ferguson was doing his research for a story on the DC social scene, he discovered my name from those stories and reached out.
Sure, there were many others declaring their verbal support for Uber among friends and colleagues, but that doesn’t always reach search engines. If anything, this experience solidifies my belief that you need to take your voice to social media to both amplify your message and carry it to mainstream media channels.