Engage the Geeks, Conquer the World!

Last night, in my opinion, was one small step for Late Night TV, one giant step for Social Media!

Lately, more and more buzz has been seeping into the mainstream world about Twitter. My friends and family have asked about it, people have brought it up to me at bars or in casual conversation and many talk shows and news shows, outside the tech and internet genre, have begun talking about it and using it. Last night Kevin Rose and Alex Albrecht of Diggnation were guests on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and they introduced a whole new audience to Twitter and Digg. They conducted an experiment where they attempted to make an audience member (Bryan Brinkman) who was new to Twitter, more popular than Barack Obama (on Twitter at least). Last I checked this morning he has more than 23K followers from 7 the previous day. For those who still don’t get it, that means he can now communicate instantaneously with 23k people from all over the world and engage in an ongoing conversation with these people.

In my opinion, Mr. Fallon has the right idea by choosing to gear his show towards the techies of the world. Twitter’s active users have grown 900% in the past year. Digg.com gets more than 35 million hits a month. It’s no secret that the brilliant minds and key influencers of the world are spending their time on these sites. I’ve always been a huge fan of Jimmy Fallon since his days on SNL, but now, thanks to his Twittering and his new tech-focused show, I am joined by millions of other tech-savvy, innovative individuals. I was lucky enough to attend a taping last week and had a great time. The Roots are quite possibly the best house band any show has ever had, and Jimmy’s awkward charm is even funnier in person.

Since Jimmy has begun tweeting I have heard Twitter being mentioned more and more on TV. Just in the past day, Ellen DeGeneres has joined Twitter and already has almost 70K followers. Jay Leno mentioned it on his show last night as well and this morning, Martha Stewart was at it again trying to become “twitter-famous.” She has been on Twitter for about a week, has almost 100k followers and I have to give her credit for trying to turn her typically less than tech-expert audience into loyal Twitters. This morning she asked for a show of hands as to who Twittered and about 5 people raised their hand. She did her best to explain it and probably contributed to more than a few first-time users jumping on the bandwagon.

In my opinion, Facebook has already become pretty mainstream and even the technically challenged folks are more willing to join it than Twitter. CEO Mark Zuckerberg has been on Good Morning America and other talk shows recently and will be on Oprah this Friday. Even my Dad is joining the Facebook cult!

But at least among the people I know, folks seem more hesistant to start Twittering, and don’t seem to fully understand how it can benefit them. If you’re still skeptical …just ask Bryan Brinkman!

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