Meralco is now posting updates or brownout schedules on Twitter, because this is another way of getting the word out quickly. Typhoon Ondoy/Pepeng and the many volunteer bloggers and Twitter-ers who published info and updates in real-time has increased our usage of Twitter, and it’s good to see that Meralco is also using Twitter in light of our need to know what is going on.
So, where do we go from here?
The people behind the Meralco Twitter account (@meralco) need to immerse themselves for a few days in Twitter, and learn how to make better use of this. All they need to do is ask around, and people following @meralco on Twitter will surely help.
In Nick’s Twitter Will Transform Meralco he writes:
I expect it will take Meralco almost a year before they get it down. In the meantime, they will just have to persevere through the mistakes, through the criticisms – a lot of which is likely to come from me.
I don’t think it will take that long. Perhaps the PR folks at Meralco will be able to make better use of Twitter in as short as 3 days. It boils down to what their objectives are, and how they can meet those objectives as quickly and as efficiently as possible.
Here are some tips…
1. Start a blog in Blogspot.com – This will serve as a backup website, just in case the Meralco website (http://www.meralco.com.ph) is unable to handle the surge in visitors. The main website will also need to publicize their official Blogspot/Blogger blog, so that people will know it is legit.
2. For future brownout schedules, publish a detailed blog post in Blogspot, and post a single tweet (or Twitter message) that looks something like: “Brownout sked, Oct 10, 5pm to 8pm – link to Blogspot blog post”
This way, there will be no need to post so many Twitter messages covering the same timeslot of a scheduled brownout.
3. Since a Blogspot/Blogger blog has an RSS feed, Meralco can use that feed and have it automatically posted in their @meralco Twitter account with the help of TwitterFeed.com
This way, the Meralco people can simply blog about an upcoming brownout (or other news/updates), and TwitterFeed will automatically post it in the @meralco Twitter account.
4. With the RSS feed, Meralco can also link this to an email autoresponder account. People can sign-up or subscribe to a Meralco brownout sked announcement list, and each time the Meralco blog is updated, an email will be broadcasted to those who subscribed to the list.
This way, people who do not always monitor Twitter will still be able to receive updates via email (if they wish to).
In the end, Meralco will be able to better serve their customers by providing needed info on a timely basis.
5. Meralco can easily monitor questions/comments posted on Twitter by simply searching for @meralco in Twitter search.
Alternatively, they can log into their Twitter account, visit the Twitter.com homepage, and click on the @meralco link found on the column on the right side.
6. Meralco can interact with people or answer their questions by simply tweeting @username followed by their response. For example,
@ManuelViloria Yes, we will… etc etc
7. I’ll add more tips here over time. And if you need extra help in terms of screencast tutorials that show how to do the above steps, please let me know so that I can prepare those tutorials for you.
Welcome to Twitter, Meralco. Thank you for finding another way to serve your customers better. 🙂