Monday, 16 March 2009

Why we're on Twitter: A second dog is rehomed!

You might remember that we all delightedly jumped for joy when a dog ended up finding a new forever home thanks to a post on Twitter. It was an extremely exciting moment, which proved to us that this being online malarkey can make a very real contribution to the day-to-day work our dedicated centre staff do.

All we could do after that was keep working hard building relationships, and hope that the magic would happen again. And thanks to some conversation going on around us, it has!

One of the great things about Twitter is the way that messages can go around the whole site through "retweeting" - someone copying what you've written and passing it on. This generates a whole world of conversation you might not even be aware of at the time, and is very valuable when you're trying to get a message out to the world! One of our lovely followers, @jamieriddell, has recently been retweeting a lot of our links to dogs needing homes, and thanks to his kind assistance another member, @robin1966, was prompted to visit his local Dogs Trust Rehoming Centre.

Within days, Dogs Trust Merseyside had matched him up with Yogi, a beautiful Boxer. He's now proudly telling the world about his lovely new addition!

We can't thank Robin enough for giving a dog a second chance, and we're very grateful for Jamie's assistance too.

People have asked us why we spend time having conversations with people online instead of just firing out rehoming updates. But we're actually interested in what our supporters have to say, and furthermore wouldn't expect anyone to pass on a message unless we engaged with them as well. We'll carry on building our community slowly, getting to know the people who want to get to know us and listening to what they have to say. So talk to us here, on Twitter, or at any of the other places you can find us; we like being spoken to!

Photo: Yogi at home, from Robin1966's Flickr stream.


Jamie R said...

There are many ways to measure social media and something like this is a very tangible and 'feel good' measurement.

Too many brands [in my opinion] fear entering the 'social space' because they don't have buttoned down ROI projections. However, fortune favors the brave [and smart, well prepared] that use these emerging channels to see where it takes them and to learn from it.

I have known Dogs Trust for years, from the TV ads, but never really 'connected' with them. Dogs Trust are on YouTube, Facebook & Twitter, as am I BUT the important thing is that I prefer connecting on Twitter. Others will prefer connecting on Facebook so the ability for a brand to communicate in multiple locations is an important, and successful method of activity.

Dogs Trust said...

@Jamie - We might have to print that comment out and read it at every conference we go to now.

Our favourite forms of metric are interaction-based - numbers are great, but they don't tell you the whole story (there are 3,000 people following us on Twitter, 40,000 on Facebook, but there is more evidence of meeting aims, rehoming dogs etc on Twitter). We're still learning and adapting, and hopefully we'll continue doing so in fruitful ways.

Thanks again - your support is much appreciated.

Anonymous said...

Very pleased to see success for you using Twitter. A small suggestion would be to use a hashtag to highlight your posts and track any retweets. Just add something like #dogstrust to your tweet and you'll see what I mean.