(and why it matters to you)
My dog has over 400 followers on Twitter and has sent just shy of 17,000 tweets. When Klout was new and his tweets were not private, his Klout score was higher than mine (@tinashakour). For a long time, he was a major influencer online and now continues to be privately.
But why does my dog have a Twitter account (and a Facebook page and Instagram)?
Because a few years ago I realized my Twitter had become all about my professional life and I wanted a “fun” and creative outlet. I saw a few dogs on Twitter who were tweeting about animal rescues, fundraisers, meet-ups and it looked like fun. So Zuko signed up for Twitter in August 2009 and made friends fast. He joined “paw-ties” that helped raised money for rescue organizations by essentially using a twitter hashtag and chat and PayPal. He made friends, met the other Shibas in person and was a founding member of the #twibas – tweeting Shibas. He’s truly a bit of a celebrity. When I go to doggie meetups or fundraisers, no one knows me – they know Zuko. Most recently he helped out with the Shiba Prom online fundraiser that raised $22,000 for rescue groups with an online dance party for dogs.
How does this all matter to you, your brand, or your social media strategy?
Zuko is popular because he is kind. He follows back. He re-tweets, he comments on other tweets, and he engages in two-way conversations online. He uses video and photos often and is never afraid to speak his mind. The sheer level of engagement he has is powerful and gave him and other #twibas enormous fundraising power online. It's a very real message for any person, product or brand that is trying to engage with their audience. Being authentic makes a difference in the world of social media and has more power than just broadcasting a one-way message as loud as possible.
Zuko’s tweets are now private because he still feels Klout scores should come with a life-time supply of cheese – and since they don't, he's sulking. However, you can find him on Instagram at http://instagram.com/ownedbyshiba. You should follow his Shiba girlfriend too: http://instagram.com/tokyoshiba. Also, please do not ask me how my dog manages to type without thumbs. It's all very complicated!
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