Twitter and Facebook - these are the current poster child(ren) of social media. Being on Facebook and having a Twitter feed is paramount for any company hoping to establish its social media street cred. But the whole idea of harnessing social media is larger than these possibly faddish brands. One could even say it's old-fashioned word of mouth by another name. Before, we had BBS and then internet forums and while these have lost the crown to the latest social networking upstarts, they are still effective in their own ways. If one knows how to use them properly that is.
For instance, when it comes to getting a receptive audience - in this case, hardware enthusiasts - there's nothing like putting up a forum thread on HardwareZone forums (blatant self-marketing here!). With suitably enticing bait of course. Like a free buffet dinner followed by a screening of the latest Hollywood blockbuster, Resident Evil: Afterlife. And in 3D too!
Local distro, Corbell Technology, has been doing this for the past few years and yesterday, they organized another gathering for HardwareZone members. This time round, the occasion was to update participants on the latest tech found on MSI motherboards and graphics cards. The local media was invited too and well, I couldn't possibly say no to free food and a movie right?
Around 50 attended this 'MSI Military Class' event, most of which appeared to be tech enthusiasts who are more than familiar with Corbell and MSI. Thanks to the interaction offered by the dedicated Corbell support forum, some of the participants even knew the forum handles of the Corbell staff by heart.
The presentation, by Ms Kay Chen, a sales specialist for MSI, covered the Fuzion technology that enables multi-GPU configurations from competing technologies, AMD's CrossFireX and NVIDIA's SLI to work together. MSI's use of military grade components in its hardware was also in the agenda and by the end, from the answers given by participants to the short quizzes that broke the monotony, most had a fair idea of MSI's technologies, or they had memorized all the key words.
Of course, given that I had reviewed MSI boards using Fuzion before, it was utterly boring. I'll have to admit though that Corbell certainly spared no expenses, with freebies ranging from thumb drives to a copy of Metro 2033 for the lucky ones. There was even a short auction session, where participants bid on retail motherboards and graphics cards at very attractive starting prices. The crowd definitely woke up for that!
Overall, it was clear that most participants enjoyed the gathering. The free food, goodie bag and movie more than made up for the slower portions of the presentation. Don't take my word for it - check out the comments and even more pictures in the forum thread. And that's how you reach out to your users and win their support, the 'old fashioned' way.
Vincent Chang / Former Senior Tech Writer
Vincent has written enough about tech to know that he doesn't know enough about tech. But that's not keeping him from going jargon-heavy about processors and mobos. After all, "you can't stop the signal".