Despite it being a shorter train journey from Manchester to the Lake District, it’s a shame that I make less often. This time around I had two reasons to visit, both highly rewarding.
Cumbria Social Media Surgery
@midhal has been organising social media surgeries around Cumbria for a while. When last visiting the Langdale & Ambleside Mountain Rescue Team (LAMRT) I’d mentioned to LAMRT team leader Nick about the possibility of hosting one there – which Nick and Mohammed promptly did.
At #cumbriaSMS I spent most of the evening as a patient, which was a welcome change. I met Liz, who runs *several* twitter accounts for various niches. From village life to maths teaching to (not) the Westmorland show, Liz gave me an thrilling insight into twitter. Services such as GrabInBox, JustUnfollow and Twiteriod are a part of her growing repatoire or tools to effectively manage her tweets.
What was particularly interesting was how this was 100% Twitter-based. Maybe, years ago, such community publishing initiatives would have been based in Dreamweaver courses, or community directories, or perhaps podcasts. Liz demonstrated how the stream of Twitter is enough – energy is spent on content and audience rather than build and production. This led us to some of the writings of Stowe Boyd and “liquid email“… a small gesture of something new I could add to the conversation!
@caprenter and I then picked our way to through to the youth hostel that Nick runs, when not rescuing people. Connectivity and signal were low, so we set up a conference call via a landline phone (!) to ta
lk to Peter O’Neill and Tristan Bailey about the web analytics they’d undertaken on the LAMRT site. Huge thanks to Peter and Tristan for taking us through each and every detail of their findings, right through to 11.30pm!
We’d registered a project for LAMRT on the wonderful Analysis Exchange, a platform to pair non-profit web projects with students and professionals of web analytics. The triangular dynamic of non-profit>student>mentor works really well – and this project was no exception. The evidence and recommendations presented were really clear – directing LAMRT to create more content around donation stories and safety messages, plus signposting an active Facebook community back through to the site itself.
Even managed to squeeze a morning walk in, before discussing actions to take on the LAMRT site with Nick. Remind me to go more often.