Wednesday, October 8, 2014

More Effective Use of Social Media

I was just handed a lesson on social media by my Faculty's communications officer, so I thought I would share it with readers.

Saturday, I received an Aurora Award (see previous post). Here's what I (re)-tweeted at the time about getting an Aurora Award:

@Runte scores an Aurora Award at #vcon

I retweeted someone else's live tweet partly because I was in a hurry (I was on a panel right after the awards ceremony) and but mostly because retweeting someone else's tweet felt somehow (i.e., irrationally) less braggy.

There was not a lot of response to this tweet, but tweeting about the award again seemed, you know, worse than braggy. I don't like Twitter streams where people keep repeating announcements about their upcoming books or whatever, so didn't want to be that guy. But on the other hand, really DID want to adveritze that I had received the award, and no one seemed to have noticed my first (re)tweet.

When I got to work Monday, I thought I should mention to the Faculty's communications officer that I had received an award on the weekend, because we're supposed to, and because I thought there was a chance she would put that in the Faculty Twitter feed. And she did, but here's how she tweeted about it:

ULethbridgeEducation @ULethbridgeEdu · Congrats Dr Robert Runté! Recipient @PrixAuroraAward for work on speculative fiction #uleth

Thinking her version might be slightly more effective.....

So, deconstructing here, she grabbed a picture of me from her files, slapped that onto a powerpoint slide; looked up the paper to grab a suitable quote for the target audience (i.e., Faculty of Ed students and faculty), used a couple of different typefaces, and ta-da! Since she had this out within an hour of my telling her, that's that max time she could have spent on it, but I'm guessing she had other more important stuff to do at the same time, so probably a lot less.

I've tweeted text I have thought worth quoting, and announcements, and I've tweeted photos, but um...feeling bit stupid that it never before occurred to me to make a custom slide to combine the interesting quote with the announcement on a strong visual.

Well, duh! This is freaking awesome!

And the result of her tweeting this on Faculty stream was a wave of new twitter followers on my twitter feed....

So from now on, any time I send out an announcement, I'm figuring out some kind of interesting tag line, and putting it out as a visual.

My apologies if this is obvious to everyone else, but thought I would share a lesson learned.

P.S.: My faculty's communication expert is Darcy Tamayose who is herself a published author

Monday, October 6, 2014

Aurora Award

Surprised and delighted to have won an Aurora Award this year [for “Why I Read Canadian Speculative Fiction: The Social Dimension of Reading”, Scholar Keynote Address at ACCSFF ’13, Toronto and subsequently published in Recent Perspectives on the Canadian Fantastic: Selected Papers from ACCSFF. Allan Weiss, ed. Jefferson, NC: MacFarland, 2014 (in press).]
All this year's winners (front) and presenters (backrow).
My turn to present: Rich Leblanc accepting on behalf of On Spec Magazine

Legendary author William Gibson, who was inducted into the Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy Association Hall of Fame (along with Spider and Jeanne Robinson; Spider is second from right in first photo) and me, showing off my Aurora Award.

Another highlight of the Aurora Awards ceremony (presented this year at V-Con 39 in Vancouver) was when Al Harlow (Lead singer for Prism) presented the Aurora Award for Music, which went to Chris Hadfield for his performance of Space Oddity — in, you know, space. Thought getting Al Harlow as presenter was pretty cool.

Also glad to see Frank Johnson (in tux in middle of first photo) receive recognition for his trophy design and 23 years of making them for the Association. I often felt that the trophy's unique design significantly added to how seriously people take these awards —makes it really worth getting one.