Itinerary planning for a recent trip to Chicago brought me to the Around Chicago in 85 Tours blog, a genius creation of the Chicago Architecture Foundation. Employee Jennifer Lucente had accepted the challenge of taking all of the Foundation’s tours in one year, sharing the experience via her blog, Facebook page and live tweeting. Of course, being both an architecture and social media nut, I thought this was the best engagement idea since sliced bread met the toaster. So you can imagine my excitement then at meeting Jennifer on the one tour that I manage to fit into our trip.
Quickly recognizing a kindred spirit, (who else would tweet in -10 degree C weather?), I introduced myself via twitter. Some of the tidbits from our live conversation – that tours in the summer were much easier to cover than those in the winter, that 85 really is a lot of tours and that she, like most of us, walks the fine line between balancing day job and social media maven duties. I tweeted my heart out, most likely confusing KW tweeps with the constant stream of reflections on the development of the skyscraper!
Jennifer completed her mission with an open bar celebration on December 16th (what no plane ticket for me?) at the Chicago Theater. I will miss her tweets and blog updates that have certainly fed my yen for architecture. The project is also a perfect example of how to harness social media tools to create real engagement and awareness. A real person telling their very real stories, genius.