Lunchtime Links: Learn Audience Engagement From a Hollywood Director

How the director of summer blockbuster White House Down keeps moviegoers on the edge of their seats. Also: Using enterprise social networking to boost member and employee interactions.

Does your association follow a formula for member engagement? That’s all the more reason to keep your content fresh.

That, and more, in today’s Lunchtime Links:

Keep them guessing: As the director of several big-budget Hollywood action films, including this summer’s White House Down, Roland Emmerich knows a thing or two about keeping his audience riveted. Though his movies have been called formulaic, Emmerich relies on elements such as editing and humor to keep audience members guessing and engaged. In an interview with Fast Co.Create, Emmerich says the best way to keep people involved is to show them something new. “That’s the first rule of formula: Don’t let it look like a formula,” he says. “You have to try to distract [audience members] from the formula. You have to be very clever how you hide it.” What does your association do to keep its content fresh?

Shared knowledge: Does your association use an enterprise social networking tool, such as Yammer or tibbr, to promote employee communication and collaboration across the organization? If recent research from Northwestern University Communication Professor Paul Leonardi is any indication, it might be worth considering. In a six-month study reported by Katharine Gammon for Northwestern and featured on the online news site Quartz, Leonardi found that enterprise social networking tools improved employees’ ability to find project-based information and knowledge within a company by more than 30 percent and to locate the person or coworker with that knowledge by more than 70 percent. “Any interaction between two employees can potentially be seen or overheard by others,” writes Gammon of Leonardi’s work. “But we can only sit across from, or directly report to, a limited number of people. A social networking tool takes these fortuitous encounters and makes them both wide reaching and routine.”

Out of this world: When Canadian Astronaut Chris Hadfield set off for a five-month stay at the International Space Station, he probably had no idea that he’d soon become a model of social media success. While off planet, Hadfield used social networking tools, including Reddit, Tumblr and Facebook, to communicate and chat with students about his work and the importance of science. In a recent column for Forbes, longtime science journalist Ned Potter calls Hadfield (@cmdr_hadfield) a “phenomenon” who, thanks in large part to his command of social media, became “perhaps the most famous spaceman since Neil Armstrong.” How did he do it? Potter says Hadfield, who has amassed an audience of more than 1 million Twitter followers, had a clear message, focused on a tech-savvy audience, and used a combination of words, photos, and video to tell engaging stories that personalized his experience for followers back on Earth.

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(Columbia Pictures)

Anita Ferrer

By Anita Ferrer

Anita Ferrer is a contributor to Associations Now. MORE

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