After I quipped that I should invite my favorite new band to our "Don't Go Into Labor" Day Party, Jeff suggested doing it for real. He said "Do. Invite them to your party. I think that's a very cool idea and one that you could leverage in your own 'power of social media' story."
So I did.
I sent an evite to the band OK Go. I invited them to come chill with us in the backyard for a few hours. Maybe play some badminton, hang in the hammock, listen to the End of Summer mix I made on iTunes, have a tall cold one. You know...just chill and raise a glass to the end of summer.
Alas, they cannot make it. But at least they were kind enough to reply. Here's what they wrote:
"Thanks for the invite Mary & Dan. Wish we could make it, but OK Go is going to be in CA this weekend. See you next time in KS! Damian, Dan, Tim, Andy"
Gotta give these guys some props for actually responding to the evite. After checking out their web site, blog, message board, myspace page, flickr group, podcast, newsletter, videogame, YouTube group and some of the fan based interactivities they have in place it's clear these guys get it. They are authentic and their using every arrow in their cyber quiver to get people on the OK Go bus. The best part of all of this, is that it is working. They're talking to fans and fans are talking back. There is no wall between the band and the fans.
Check out the YouTube OK Go dance group. They've challenged fans to video tape themselves doing one of the bands' dances. They've got 154 entries so far.
And the Fan Correspondent idea. Brilliant. Here's how they describe it:
Here's how it works: We'll pick one Fan Correspondent for each show and give them a ten minute interview with one or more band members plus free reign to document the show on video in any way you want--you can interview fans, fight the merch guy, or just set up the camera and let it roll. It's all up to you.
There are only three rules:
1) The band interview will be no more than 10 minutes
2) You have to use your own video camera
3) You have to edit and upload your footage to our YouTube group within a few days of the show
I'll definitely invite them next year, but with more than a weeks notice so they can plan accordingly.