May 2010 Meeting Recap: Tweets, Feats and Automobiles

David Murray shares is adventures with team #DETchevySXSW.

With photos, video clips and great stories David Murray took everyone at the May Refresh Detroit Meeting on his adventures with team #DETchevySXSW as they traveled to South by Southwest and won. Team Detroit was one of 9 teams from around the country that competed in the first Chevy SXSW Road Trip Challenge this year.

David Murray is the Director of Social Web Communication for re:group. He is also a member of iDetroit. David founded the Social Media Club chapter of Detroit, and is one of the co-chairs for FutureMidwest. The other members of Team Detroit are Audrey Walker, Henry Balanon, and Brandon Chessnutt.

Each team in the GM sponsored competition traveled in new Chevy vehicles. Along the way the teams were given up to 50 different challenges or stunts to complete. Teams earned points based on the number of tweets, blog posts, Facebook “likes’ etc… that the team got from fans following them online.

With funny “audition” videos and giveaways donated by local businesses the team began to build buzz even before they hit the road. “When it comes to developing projects…developing some sort of movement…organizations…Even before the web site or whatever is out there, start talking about what your doing. Start speaking about your passion because it’s going to attract other people who are passionate about the very same thing.” David said. “ And maybe what you come out with at the end is a little different than what you had but its going to have a lot more people input and a lot more people are going to know about it.”

Frequently the team heard comments like “This is so fun. This is so great for our area. “

“At least for our us…This was a lot more than just driving down in a car doing goofy stuff we’re actually representing something. Regardless of what the project is, when its online all of a sudden something happens, you become a representation, regional icon thing, that people will look at and say ‘Yep, see that, that’s Detroit’…They’ll say that if its good and they’ll say that if its bad. Right away we realized we needed to… make sure that we provide good content. Make sure people are laughing and having a good time. It paid off in the end.”

The challenges ranged from the serious to totally goofy. They included helping kids read, running a bingo game at a senior citizen center, walking dogs for a human society, getting a pedicure (even the guys), collecting shoelaces, ordering food in a foreign language, leading an aerobic exercise, and arm wresting cooks.

“As we traveled though the States…Everyone that we talked to, regardless of where we were, again we got a sense that people were so ready for some sense of levity…ready to laugh” David explained.

Whether it was tweeting, video, content, blogging all the teams worked to do it well. “Quality counts when it comes to producing content regardless of the situation or the audience” David said. Followers picked up on that and were more likely to talk about it.

As winners Team Detroit will get to hold a epic Tweetup Party. The tweetup is coming at the end of August.

What did GM get out of this:

  • 61.1 Million web impressions in just under 2 weeks.
  • 13,440 Tweets
  • 15,924 web mentions.
  • 1,216 blog posts
  • GM’s positivity ranking went up.

“What did it do for Detroit? One ripple starts a movement.” David discussed how the event helped make people aware of Detroit in a positive way. How well known bloggers and conference attendees asked him about what was happening in Detroit.

“Passion attracts passion. When you do good things people will notice. Keep doing good things. People will turn their heads. “

To learn more about the team visit their site at:

Watch a video of the presentation here:

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Video by Phill Tran