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[January 02, 2009]
IMS reaching fans through Twitter
INDIANAPOLIS, Jan 02, 2009 (Hendricks County Flyer - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
-- Want to know what's going on at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 140 characters or less?
Now that Twitter is the newest social networking medium being used by the Speedway, fans young and old can get updates about tickets, race times, and other news and information sent to their computer and mobile devices.
Twitter is a social networking site and micro-blogging service that allows users to update their profiles and send messages to friends in their circle. Micro, because each post can only include up to 140 characters.
Paul Kelly, communications manager for the IMS, said Twitter is one of the leading micro-blogging sites in the social networking world and would open up the Speedway to two-way communication with fans.
"It's got a lot of momentum and it's just one of the social media tools that we want to use to connect the fans," he said. "We realize that social networking is getting more popular as more and more people are using mobile devices."
Though Kelly said the device targets more of a younger crowd, he says it's not being used to alienate the older group. Twitter's simplicity, hopefully will bring in a wider group of fans, he said.
"We understand right now that social networking appeals to more of a younger crowd, and it's never a bad thing to reach them, the new customers, but more and more social networks are opening up to an older demographic too," he said. "Twitter ... is simple. Simplicity appeals to all demographics, especially the demographic that wasn't raised wired."
Kelly said the IMS plans to keep the Twitter site updated and will try to make it fun for fans.
"We're going to use it as a news feed," he said. "Whenever we put new content on the website, we'll link to it and remind people of various ticket sales and offers and things like that. No question it's a marketing vehicle, but we also want to have some fun. Today we posted some trivia about the (Indy) 500, and a countdown to how many days there are left before the 500; we don't want it to be a bland, faceless, lifeless board ... we want this to be fun."
The IMS already has both a Facebook and MySpace account and Kelly calls Twitter another "tool in the toolbox to reach people."
"We want it to be a two-way communication," he said. "Whenever fans have an observation or comment, we want them to be able to make those comments and we'll do our best to respond as quickly."
To receive IMS information for free, visit the Community section of the IMS website at www.indianapolismotorspeedway.com/community, click on the "Follow us to Tiwtter" logo, and click on the Follow button underneath the IMS Centennial Era logo to receive the IMS Twitter feed.
To find the IMS MySpace page, go to www.myspace.com/kissthebricks; and for the Facebook account, type Indianapolis Motor Speedway into the search field at www.facebook.com.
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