Like many others, I have been watching the Occupy story unfold first here in our backyard down in Zuccotti Park (the park formerly known as Liberty Plaza) and now across the country...and world. Politically and socially, in conversation with friends, a discussion of "what it all means" can become somewhat of a polarizing conversation. This definitely isn't the forum for that discussion, although it is one that I encourage that people have with friends, it's an important one. For those of us who are true social media nerds (me, me!) it's been interesting to watch how the conversation unfolds across multiple platforms and channels. The hashtags, the instagr.ams, the blog debates and rapid pick-up.
The #OWS' own social imprint has surged in both acquisition and engagement amassing primary organic numbers that many brands couldn't garner in a year.
- 184,000+ LIKES on Facebook (40% active engagement rate)
- 128,000+ active discussions on Facebook (the ones they can track/directly linked)
- 65,000+ Twitter followers (22+ average RTs)
- 187,000+ monthly unique website views with a whopping 11 minutes time on site (avg per visit) according to Compete and Quantcast, respectively
But more important perhaps than the acquisition (and there are countless sub-groups and pages and communities not accounted for above) is the activation, and how Occupy Wall Street has leveraged the scale of social media to drive adoption of messaging and movement, not unlike what we do over here daily for our clients.
Here's a few ways in addition to the primary social channels above that social media is playing an integral communications role in this movement:
- A forum on the movement's site provides a conversational hub
- On blogging platform Tumblr, We Are the 99 Percent, allows users to post testimonials about how they are part of the disaffected majority
- A LiveStream video channel of protest HQ activity entitled "Global Revolution" is available 24/7
- Uniting under common hashtags #occupywallstreet , #ows and #occupywallst which act as natural conversation aggregates on Twitter (who may be censoring the movement?)
- Downloadable posters are available on OccupyTogether.org for grassroots activation
- An application, The Vibe, which allows participants to communicate "anonymously"
- A publication launched on Kickstarter has now raised over $40K (original goal = $12K)
- Demonstrators are checking-in all over Foursquare who recently released a map of these and a chart of check-ins
So what does this all mean? It means people are talking. And the conversation is growing. And social media is the primary way that the conversation is spreading. It is the plumbing, if you will.
Over 1 MM unique people have shared content about this movement with during the time of this post, 65 tweets per minute including one of the three hashtags above. Of course a gang of celebs have (in some cases arguably very ironically) have started jumping in including Kanye West, Russel Simmons, Lil Wayne, Hank Williams Jr., Susan Sarandon, Mark Ruffalo, Roseanne Barr, Yoko Ono, Alec Baldwin, Tim Robbins and of course, Michael Moore. The celeb angle has been an interesting one, fueling an entire new niche of conversation within the pop-culture community. Sigh. This is NYC, afterall.
When the dust settles on this one, I hope to see a solid infographic on the role of social in this as it is undoubtedly important. In the interim, I'll be liking, tweeting and following along the journey.
Note: Pics were snapped on-site by moi.