#UsGuys: Social Media Case Study

Social Media’s Virtual Water Cooler

On Twitter and beyond, #UsGuys, which allows #UsGals to join them, has attracted lots of attention. The five founding members, Cristian Gonzales (@galactic), Tom Moradpour (@TomMoradpour), Jason Mikula (@mikulaja), Patrick Prothe (pprothe) and Chase Adams (@RealChaseAdams), felt too constrained by Twitter’s 140 character boundaries, especially given several participants have long Twitter handles. This led them to create #UsGuys, a non-stop water cooler for the remotely connected, social media savvy working set. According to founding member, Chase Adams, #UsGuys is “a proverbial social media garage, where we pop the hood on Social Media, marketing and customer care. ”

#UsGuys’ 3 Major Social Media Accomplishments

#UsGuys has evolved to serve three major roles for its participants:

  1. Keeps members current on the latest news, especially social media related information including new technologies and platforms. Just yesterday, Tom Moradpour tweeted that he read his Twitter stream with his morning coffee, not newspapers!
  2. Provides a social media tribe. To grow and take advantage of social media, it’s useful to have a group of likeminded individuals around you.  #UsGuys offers members this social media family connectedness in a frictionless way.#UsGuys is like a social media party. As a by-product of their connections, interactions and social sharing, the #UsGuys members have achieved high Klout scores (although this may be partially attributable to certain limitations in the way these scores are calculated and the fact that these guys are very involved, active social media users).
  3. Enables members to connect, despite remote locations. While geographically dispersed, #UsGuys facilitates an office-like social environment. The difference is that everyone’s sitting with their cup of joe in front of a computer screen rather than in someone’s office. At our core, we’re all social beings and we want to engage with others. For remote workers, the lack of camaraderie can be a bigger hurdle than finding a quiet area to concentrate. To overcome their physical distances, members are planning to take this group offline to a January Meetup in Philadelphia.

Best described as a 24/7 Twitter Chat, #UsGuys has attracted lots of attention that’s extended even beyond Twitter. #UsGuys has leveraged a number of social media platforms to transform themselves into a real time communications and sharing network. As a result, the #UsGuys clan enables them make real life connections that translate to high-value relationships. Any marketer looking to understand what’s required to have a social media marketing strategy and engagement should spend a day lurking on #UsGuys’ tweet stream. Or better yet, jump into the conversation which is always inviting.

What do you think of #UsGuys? Would you use a social media water cooler like this? For members of #UsGuys and similar social media oriented groups, how has the group helped you? Please add your comments and insights to the comment section below?

Happy marketing,
Heidi Cohen


Big tip of my hat to #UsGuys for leading the way into social media’s future and inviting me to be one of the gang!

For further reading, please check these sources.

Photo credit: pupismyname via Flickr

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  • Amy Howell

    I love UsGuys! They have fun, share & provide great info; and they are inclusive; if you need some male perspective, it’s a good place to find it. I love the humor & sometimes it can feel like you are at a very fun frat party!

    • http://riversidemarketingstrategies.com/ Heidi Cohen

      Amy– I agree #UsGuys is a lively Twitter based frat party, except that there seems to be more coffee than beer. Glad you’re part of the conversation there. Happy marketing, Heidi Cohen

  • http://www.bluefocusmarketing.com/blog/ Cheryl Burgess

    Hi Heidi,

    Finally, the story behind #usguys! Great blog that explains history and goals. First time I entered the #usguys chat was in November, 2010 while I was communicating with Tom Moradpour (@TomMoradpour) on Twitter and noticed he also had used #usguys in his tweet response to me. Since I knew Tom I responded and included the hashtag. Then suddenly, the lights went on and I realized…OMG…did I forget to check the sign on the door? Feeling uncertain & perhaps a little uncomfortable that I made an big mistake thinking room was for “men only” I tweeted out my concern…more apology. Within minutes I was rescued by several women I know in Twittter and some new ones. What a relief, but I also realized that #usguys name is cool and great conversations.

    Cheryl
    @ckburgess
    http://bluefocusmarketing.com/blog
    http://bluefocusmarketing.com

    • http://riversidemarketingstrategies.com/ Heidi Cohen

      Cheryl–

      Glad that you’ve joined the conversation.

      Lots of people are mystified as to what #UsGuys is which is the reason I wrote the post.

      Many of the women on the #UsGuys forum sometimes tweet using #UsGals to show our solidarity.

      Happy marketing,
      Heidi Cohen

  • http://thegodbolt.blogspot.com/ Robert Ortiz

    I’m Spartac#usguys!

    I’m just a month into the group. I followed the Might, T. Lewis in here. Am eternally grateful I did. I’m not a SM guru yet. I hail with a sales & literature background. Marketing for me has always been part of what I do, but only to make the phone ring. Because if there were a Marketing v. Sales football game, I’d be laying the smack down on the Marketing department!

    My last tour of duty for another RE Broker, managing a rental department, we were all trying to figure out then how to get hip with tune of social networking. Didn’t have much time then for figuring it out. But over the past 6 months, spent time blog writing and optimizing my delivery platform, I got hungry for the How surrounding the SM world.

    The day I downloaded TweetDeck, which itself opened my eyes in a flash to what the Twitterverse really was, I found #UsGuys. Without the tool, there’d be no way to participate in the discussion. Was clear to me that you didn’t have to be an SM Guru to add value to the talk at the “water cooler”—and since there isn’t a lurker bone in my body, I stepped forward & got a warm welcome for it. That tribal bell still ringing my ear!

    Had been slowly growing my following for 6 months at a rate of 1-2 per day. Then with TweetDeck & #UsGuys, its jumped to about 10 per day, sometimes more. And no one here will say its about the numbers—but this follower increase was organic. Like minded folks I found myself surrounded by all a-sudden. Endless possibilities literally deluged upon my lap in a day!

    Now, I went looking for just this sort of group. When I found it, I did what I had to do to get in. I read somewhere a little concern about the potential for an #UsGuys explosion of membership to be detrimental. I don’t really see that being possible. This here is a well guarded island, even though its transparent as all hell. No one swims up to it and tries to stay unless they’re willing to put sweat equity into the creation of its walls and superstructure. Many hands of like-minded folk make much work light and super fun!

    And now, I don’t have to be the SM Guru—you are! I know it because you know it. So I can just be the caveman I’ve always had inside me but didn’t know was there until my TweetDeck arrived. I feel like we’re gonna be the cause of the cure for cancer. I feel like we can and surely will do anything. I feel pretty damn lucky to be just one of #UsGuys. I told my cat this though—she doesn’t seem to care.

  • http://josephgier.wordpress.com Joseph Gier

    Good post Heidi. you put its as succinctly as anyone could as to what the essence what #usguys, hash-tag conversations and social media tribe could be. I noticed that your post does not place constraints or attempt to impose an artificial framework which I have seen in other articles trying to explain the phenomenon.
    I would like to add that the one great appeal to #usguys is almost an instant sense of place with strangers(who become friends rapidly) as mixed well with a bit of whimsy & occasional silliness. I do consider the time spend in conversation well worth the time and I learn so much from the individual contribution of its members.
    Best regard
    Joseph

    • http://riversidemarketingstrategies.com/ Heidi Cohen

      Joseph –Thank you. I agree #UsGuys is a welcoming community that tries to bring new members in and cheer them on. At it’s core, #UsGuys stands for all that’s good in social media. The group has been working to build offline connections as well. Happy marketing, Heidi Cohen

  • http://keithprivette.com Keith Privette

    Thank You Heidi for posting this explanation of #UsGuys! I have been lurking around this hashtag for about a month now and the richness of the conversation and content is awesome. Just have not found my way into the longer conversation yet!

    • http://riversidemarketingstrategies.com/ Heidi Cohen

      Keith– Glad that you’ve joined the conversation. Happy marketing, Heidi Cohen

  • Lewis Poretz

    Heidi –

    I have indeed found my virtual water cooler.

    As with all your material, this is an excellent explanation of the hashtag #usguys. Keith’s post above makes me wonder actually how many lurkers are viewing the stream and simply remaining silent?

    • AJ

      I’m lurking to see if, as a woman in social media, I fit in ok with the crowd at #UsGuys or if I should join up #UsGals!

  • http://www.linkedin.com/in/stevenpofcher Steven Pofcher

    Heidi
    Am new to #UsGuys but am liking it. I found that mainstream Twitter is overwhelming and not too useful. #UsGuys is filtered down to my (many) interests. I also am afraid that it will get too big. But, we need to wait to see what happens.
    I also like the support & humor and have found some Twitter friends.

    I also greatly enjoyed the #usXsw last weekend.

  • http://www.jodiegarrison.com Jodie Garrison

    Thanks, Heidi!
    As a solo-preneur, I truly appreciate bouncing things off my “talent bank” of the other freelancers I partner with to deliver solutions to my clients. #USGuys gives me a much wider perspective. It’s a sort of virtual water cooler at some really HUGE, really HIP fantasy company.

  • Brian

    Another #usguys lurker who until now did not know the history/groundrules and thus did not jump in. Thanks for the post Heidi. Will likely take a more active role moving forward.

  • http://Www.bookmorebusiness.com Lois Creamer

    Great post. As a newbie to #usguys, this offers me some background. I think a group like this ois especially helpful to a solopreneur like me!

  • miriamgomberg

    Great post Heidi. I like to think of it as a coffee house where we all sit on overstuffed comfy sofas and discuss events. It’s always open and there is plenty of room for all. M

  • Mahan_Indian_Rest.

    Hi Heidi I read the contents of your writing , small businesses are always short with the finances to hire outside company to do marketing and logo stuff. So they always try to do themselves as much they can