Social Media Column: @YEGTweetup promotes Edmonton businesses

Published in the August 6, 2013 issue of The Edmonton Sun.

Linda’s social media column can be found every Tuesday in the Edmonton Sun.

@YEGTweetup promotes Edmonton businesses

It’s a simple yet powerful concept: putting a face to a name while promoting local businesses.

That’s the goal of @YEGTweetup — an organization that hosts monthly events that bring together Edmonton’s online community while highlighting a local company.

“We try to cover all the different aspects of a meet-up slash tweetup slash mixer slash whatever it might be. Are we trying to be everything to everyone? Probably, but I don’t think that’s a bad thing,” says @YEGTweetup co-founder Steve Russell.

Russell (@steeeveohh), along with Kim Quibell (@KimmieQ10), have taken ‘tweetups’ (meet-ups with Twitter folks) and combined it with your typical business networking mixer to create a powerful and popular concept that brings together dozens, each month.

“We do big events, we do little, intimate events. We’ve never had an event that hasn’t sold out,” Quibell says.

“We weren’t expecting the demand that we’re getting,” Russell says. “We filled a niche and the demand was there. It motivated us to be able to grow and continue to grow.”

The eighth @YEGTweetup was just held at Block 1912 in Old Strathcona at the end of July, where about 80 people packed the café for a night of fun, food and live music.

Now the dynamic duo is planning their August event as a barbecue with proceeds supporting Hope Mission.

While @YEGTweetup hosts its own official events, it lists other, third-party events taking place in the Edmonton area on its website as well. doubles as a local event listing page and a great resource for those looking at what upcoming events they can attend.

The @YEGTweetup brand is becoming more established with each event it hosts or helps bring awareness to and while before the pair had to reach out and convince businesses to work with them, now it’s the businesses that are approaching them.

“It’s just a great idea,” says Bryan Saunders with Block 1912. “When you get that support from others, we love it.”

Whether you’re new to Twitter or have been doing it for a while, there’s always something special about attending a tweetup — putting those faces to names and making those real life connections.

“In the last two years I’ve been on Twitter and really in the last number of months with @YEGTweetup, I’ve met more quality people in these events than I’ve had in most of my life previous,” Russell says.

Russell and Quibell are doing everyone a great service by creating evenings where these important connections can take place.

I also always get a kick out of seeing everyone gathered in real life, but spending half their time at the event sharing moments online with their smartphones pulled out. Ha.

Be sure to follow @YEGTweetup for more information on upcoming events.

Hope to see you at the next one!

Click here to read the column on the Edmonton Sun website!

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