By Sarah Richards, Office Coordinator and Social Media Manager
On the 24th July our Twitter account went berserk.
We literally received hundreds and hundreds of retweets, comments, replies, follows and ongoing engagement that reached unprecedented levels based on previous trends for the @Design_Pit account. As I sat down to unravel what on earth was going on, the engagements kept on coming. This was simply incredible…
As it turns out, a tweet I’d sent over a weekend had been received, read and appreciated by someone with a big profile. This person is a celebrity that most people who watch TV will probably recognise. Theo Paphitis is a business mastermind and retail tycoon with a vast business empire and one of the founding Dragons on BBC’s Dragon Den TV show. Yes, that guy! He’d only retweeted the message that I’d sent to him. And that is why our Twitter feed blew up at a rate of knots!
So, how? What? Why? And when did this happen?!
Well, I’d not just randomly tweet Theo. There was method to the madness! Theo runs a campaign over Twitter called Small Business Sunday or #SBS for short. The concept is simple, tweet Theo directly using the hashtag #SBS and tell him why your small business is great and why you deserve to win. The only caveat is that your tweet must be sent between the hours of 5:30 and 7pm on a Sunday evening. On the Monday afterwards, Theo wades through the many entries and selects his favourite six and declares them winners of #SBS for that week. He retweets the original message and then lists the winners for the week in a second tweet to all of his 500,000 Twitter followers. The exposure for us was huge. We gained hundreds of followers within an hour of winning and the engagement with previous winners was very encouraging. All of them were extremely positive about being “part of the #SBS winners club” and for the rest of the evening, I sat on my phone and iPad engaging with well wishers and riding the crest of the wave!
So what happens next?
Currently, as I write we are waiting for an introductory email from the #SBS website confirming our success and giving us access to the winners area where we will be listed on a directory where we can do business with other winners. Being part of this gives us exposure and access to potential clients on a national level. Secondly, the PR from this win is massive and we intend to make the most of it! There are events for #SBS run over the course of the year and we intend to get along to a couple of them to network and mix with other businesses in the #SBS circle. Hopefully, we’ll get to meet Theo at one of the events – he usually hosts them and we are excited to have the chance to chat to him in February next year!
It is safe to say that this has been a massive coup for us. We’ve been focusing on our newly installed social media strategy for the last 3 months and we’d set a target of winning #SBS early on when mapping out the strategy. There are new goals that we are setting and the next thing on the agenda in our Twittersphere is to sell out our Charity Gala Dinner in September. We are hosting the event in aid of Parkinson’s UK and hope to smash our target of £5k in our 5th year of business. Why not consider a ticket or table, there are still some left! Head over to designpit-5kgala.eventbrite.co.uk to buy tickets or sponsor a table. And of course don’t forget, if you don’t already follow us on Twitter give us a follow on our handle @Design_Pit.