#walkandtalk the Social Experiment

Two weeks ago I came up with a little experiment for the people that follow me on Twitter. Initially my idea was to see how many people might call if I posted my phone number in a tweet along with some instructions to call. The tag #walkandtalk made sense to me cause I’m not a fan of abbreviating the word “and” down to the letter”n”. The concept is simple have my phone on me while walking around my neighborhood. Basically my plan was to open my line up to anyone who cared to call and talk.

I have to admit I thought my half hour or so walks would be high powered productive conversations that would spawn some of the most innovative and exciting ideas that the world has ever seen. In this delusion I would be talking with well known political figures, inventors, high powered business people, big time creatives and a variety of geniuses that all for some reason all follow me on Twitter. My thinking is since they follow me, they must want to hear what I have to say… right? The reality was far from my delusion. It’s interesting to think about how on a regular basis, we all basically working on closing the gap between reality and delusion.

The Numbers
I currently have
587 followers on Twitter.
When I started doing the walk and talks I had
571 followers on Twitter.
Of those followers, I’ve probably met 1/4 of them in person. This makes me feel like I got a good group of followers.
When I track links I post on Twitter, on average I get about 45 clicks to what ever it is I link to.
I tweeted with the #walkandtalk tag 9 times along with my phone number and a number of minutes I’d be available to talk.
I was retweeted once by @digitalsnowmen
@dearestportland inquired about what #walkandtalk was
and finally @podgnosticast was the first actual caller after about two weeks of walk and talks. JC even recorded an interview with me about the project that you can listen to at
http://s.mohdi.com/podwalktalk

I figured after the interview I realized it was time to share my understanding of the results of the #walkandtalk experiment.

The Results
Data doesn’t do much good unless someone comes along and points out some obvious observations about it.
Now I’m no professional analyst and I’m sure anyone reading this might have a different opinion on what to take from this.

There are a lot of factors to take place when analyzing any data, and it’s difficult to look at anything without taking a look at other things going on. It’s fairly safe to assume that the people that follow me generally won’t call a number when they see it in a tweet. For several reasons this might be the case.
Why not call? Below are some possible reasons why I believe I only got one call in 2 weeks.

  • Time. Followers don’t see the tweets in real time so by the time they actually see my tweet the walk and talk time period is up. A lot of people might just be busy too.
  • People don’t want to talk to strangers. Maybe at some point we should be taught to talk to strangers…
  • The unknown? I’m guessing a lot of people don’t want to participate in something they know very little about. That is why if you are trying to raise money for something, it’s probably helpful to tell people what you are raising money for.
  • Perhaps Twitter is for talking not for listening.
  • I’m not famous and I’m not girl. This might account for a lot of people not calling me.
  • People often don’t give value to things that are free. If I charged a small amount of money and had a tiny bit of marketing, I’m fairly certain I would have received more calls. A while back I sold calls to peoples pets for $1 and actually made a number of calls..

I think that’s a good reason bullet list why people didn’t pick up the phone and actually call.
Ideally as more people actually participate in this project, there might actually be some more innovations to report on.

Remember when advertising used to be called social networking?

While so far this is my experience posting my phone number on Twitter, I do encourage others to post their number and do their own #walkandtalk to see what comes from it. Other than the potential for abuse, I think that for the most part more good than harm can come from actually talking with the people you follow or that follow you.

Now What?
I’m thinking that with a little understanding about this project perhaps more people will participate in the walk and talks. I would love to even post a video, photos and or share a map along with where I go, what I do and what happens on these walks. I see #walkandtalk being a fantastic tool and exercise in the practice of creativity. It’s an ever changing concept that really explores individual communication and hopefully will help in connecting people.

Next time I talk about walk and talks, I hope to have some interesting stories to tell from some amazing people.

If you would like to hear more about this idea or project give a listen at Podgnosticast
http://s.mohdi.com/podwalktalk

Perhaps I’ll be talking with you next #walkandtalk on Twitter.

At some point reality is created from the delusion of it.

#walkandtalk

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