Qantas, NT News and Mantra On Esplanade: A story about Twitter from Darwin

This is a short story that shows how mentioning influential Twitter accounts in your tweets can help spread your marketing messages more widely.

On Sunday, as my Qantas flight was making its final approach to Darwin, a woman became distressed and fainted.

A man, who I have seen on the Adelaide-Darwin flight before, left his seat and provided some treatment.

The Qantas steward barked into the PA system, ‘ALL passengers must be seated.’

He eventually did, just before the plane dropped from the air for the landing.

We were asked to stay in our seats while extra medical help was provided to the passenger who was escorted out of the plane first.

While we were waiting, I sent this tweet:

Bravo to the doctor on board flight from #Adelaide to #DarwinNT – a poor lady has fainted on landing. Great human spirit @TheNTNews

Interestingly, the woman was treated just a few metres from the plane’s exit door and the hundred or so passengers all filed past here. An odd experience. It felt like we were all walking past her hospital bed.

What happened next, is what prompted today’s blog.

Some online detective work – assisted by some giant clues

Over the next couple of hours I got to the Mantra on Esplanade where I spent some time in the lobby, restaurant and bar, waiting for my room to be ready.

As one does these days, I photographed the lunch I ordered to prove to my exercise physiologist that I had made a wise choice. Here it is:

The Ceasar Salad photo in Darwin that alerted the NT News

May this Caesar Salad be the start of a nutrition-forward week in #DarwinNT albeit with the alcohol fast ending

A short while later, I checked in to the Mantra via Foursquare.

The point of the story

Intriguingly, across town at the NT News, my tweet was noted on their Twitter stream.

A journalist, Sarah Crawford, was tasked with the job of following up my tweet and investigate.

By mid-afternoon, I was set up in my room and surprised by my room phone ringing. It was Sarah Crawford.

Using good old fashioned journalistic investigative skills, Sarah had been given my tweet, seen my references on Twitter about being at the Mantra and used simple deduction to call reception and ask to speak to Mr Davis.

From your perspective, as a small business operator using social media as a marketing channel, this should be an interesting story.

When a customer or influencer (in this case the NT News) is using Twitter, mentioning their account name in a tweet you expect to be of interest to them, can be an effective and efficient way to grab their attention and pave the way for a direct response.

In my case, Sarah’s enquiry about the medical emergency on the plane allowed us to quickly work out that there was no dramatic story. It could have gone the other way too. The events may well have been more widely significant and Sarah would have been in contact with an eye witness very quickly.

If the tweet that triggered this series of events had this been your observation of an event in the Top End, your contrary view about an issue or your insight from your position of expertise in your industry, Sarah would have been speaking to you. She would have had a fresh story and you would have had your ideas or insights shared with a wider audience.

If your tweet had targeted a customer or potential customer rather than a media outlet, then the result may have been a conversation or extra consideration of your goods/services.

If your tweet had targeted a different influencer, such as an industry organisation or an agency like Tourism NT, your message might have been retweeted to THEIR followers, expanding your reach and potential influence.

So next time you Tweet, stop and think about any particular Twitter accounts worth mentioning.

Try one today, by singling out @theriteseries or @stevedavis and I will consider retweeting them on your behalf – or getting back to you with some thoughts about why retweeting might be unlikely.



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