As with any learned skill, story telling on social media takes practice. When we started working with HMC Architects in June 2010, they had already established themselves as one of the top architecture firms to follow on Twitter. From the start, they used Twitter to connect with and share knowledge and resources with others in the AEC industry and this approach continues to serve them well.
However, the firm's blog was simply an extension of their newsroom -- predominantly announcements of new projects, press coverage, new hires and promotions. In July 2010, the firm started creating content that told the stories of its work and its professionals largely by interacting with employees behind its firewall through an internal blog to mine for stories that readers might find interesting on their external blog.
Over time, HMC was able to learn from the blog and Facebook posts that prompted people to respond and share.
We created this timeline of HMC's social media path to illustrate the many lessons they learned over the years of consistently publishing content and ideas and closely monitoring what worked and didn't in terms of engaging their readers. Social media requires an ongoing process of trial and error. Even though their storytelling has matured and is effectively engaging readers, HMC continues to try new things.
There are lessons here for anyone starting or evaluating their social media program, perhaps, the most important message is that social media success takes time and consistent posting to understand what your fans and followers want.
What are some of the events that have shaped your social media strategy?
A large format version of this timeline is currently on display in the "Presenting Architecture" exhibit at the American Institute of Architecture San Francisco Chapter.