There's no shortage of companies claiming to help businesses navigate the world of social networking. But Jon Fahrner, CEO of a new startup called BumeBox, argued that what those businesses really need isn't just another sharing widget—it's a way to hold events and promotional parties on Twitter.
BumeBox, Fahrner said, is a way to move beyond "old social" and take advantage of the new "real-time social" environment. Businesses schedule special promotional events for a specific window of time. Then, as they post new content and interact with its customers, it all shows up as part of the businesses' websites.
And the experience should be much more engaging and relevant than just collecting every tweet with a certain hashtag or keyword. Links to media like YouTube videos are "unpacked" to display the actual media, fan, and customer responses to each tweet. These results are gathered in a single thread, and people can respond from the website itself with comments or positive or negative votes.
Even though the San Francisco-based startup is officially launching today, it already held a "celebrity sightings party" for HeyDay Footwear. The shoe company tweeted links to photos and videos of celebrities wearing its shoes, and according to BumeBox, the event resulted in 400 mentions of HeyDay (which has nearly 3,000 followers on Twitter) and 2.5 million social network impressions.
Twitter "events" can work in parallel to real events, too. BumeBox's other launch customers include the Magic fashion trade show, Aug. 22-24, which will use BumeBox to host a Twitter contest during the conference; and Universal Sports, which will use BumeBox to manage the social networking component of the Rugby World Cup.
BumeBox is self-funded.