Sunday, November 23, 2008

Shaq is keepin it Real on Twitter

w:Shaquille O'Neal of the w:Miami Heat.Image via Wikipedia

As Twitter has grown in popularity, celebrities have also jumped in. We’ve all gone crazy over Al Gore, Lance Armstrong, Dave Matthews, and Brea Grant and Greg Grunberg from Heroes. Earlier this month, everyone was excited that a Twitter account was opened to share the thoughts and blog updates from Britney Spears. However, as pointed out by Paul Glazowski in his Mashable column, Britney’s Twitter account was written by Lauren Krusk, Britney’s Social Media Director. Our celebrity obsession is so great that Eric Burke has even created a site to verify the authenticity of the celebrity.

However, not one of these celebrities has embraced Twitter in the manner that we all use it everyday. Not one of the people mentioned above follows more than 77 people (Brea Grant) except for Britney, but that is just a publicist oriented account. As you can see below, some update very sporadically. Now, one would assume that a reason why these people have joined Twitter is to engage with their fans, yet there isn’t a lot of engagement going on, is there?

Celebrity Following Followers Updates
Al Gore 1 19,736 5
Lance Armstrong 2 6,159 188
Dave Matthews 3 9.032 1,128
Brea Grant 77 3,486 671
Greg Grunberg 10 3,076 413
Britney Spears 1,555 8.970 42

However, another big personality has joined Twitter and this one as befits his style is leading the way. You may have seen that Shaquille O’Neal has actively joined Twitter. In just 4 days, starting with his first tweet announcing his presence, O’Neal has followed 267 people, almost 10,000 followers and updated an average of 30 times/day which is equivalent to his scoring average in his prime.


Much has already been written about Shaq on Twitter, from the NY Times article to Adam Ostrow’s Mashable article about how a skeptic was proven wrong with an actual phone call from Shaq. Can you believe that, he actually called a fan! And as we have come to expect from The Diesel, he is showing us his inimitable style, his personality, his candor, and his realness. He is responding to his fans, consistently as shown below.



Shaq may say, “there can only be one me”, but as he said earlier today, “"most leaders r made. .wanna b sucessful, act like a leader”. Shaq is showing others how it’s done and he seems to be having a good time. Shaq is raising the bar for other celebrities to be real, be active, and actually engage with their fans. And it really shows the power of a passionate community like Twitter. Last week I wrote about how a league like the NFL can benefit by bringing its fans together with its players and now Shaq is leading the way!

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dan.rimon said...

Who are really the twitter people?