Reporter’s Diary: Lessons to be learnt from Govind Tiwari

While last week the country mourned the loss of lives in the three blasts in Mumbai, this week, an overnight online star Govind Tiwari brought some much needed amusement, muses Tasneem Limbdiwala.

e4m by Tasneem Limbdiwala
Updated: Jul 23, 2011 8:45 AM
Reporter’s Diary: Lessons to be learnt from Govind Tiwari

Before we knew it, the first half of 2011 is over, wonder if it is too early to talk about the New Year? After all, it is still six months away! Amid lashing rains, Mumbai was subject to yet another terror attack last week. Being in the media industry, I couldn’t help but observe how the latest attacks were covered by different media. And harsh as it may sound, I am sure the TAM ratings are awaited to know which news channels managed to grab maximum eyeballs with their coverage of the three blasts in Mumbai.

But I hope while doing so, our industry professionals may have kept the principals and ethics of journalism intact, unlike during the 26/11 terror attacks. There were some lessons for the broadcast industry to be learnt from the previous attacks and hopefully it was a lesson well learnt…

Amid such dark clouds – in people’s minds and the sky above – there were some light-hearted moments too, thanks to an unknown guy from Allahabad, who goes by the name of Govind Tiwari. Till last week no one had heard about him, but now he has become an overnight online sensation. Who is he? Tiwari is definitely a self-obsessed person and his gaudy blog has attracted much interest from all over the world. His fan following had made him one of the top trends on Twitter and the link to his blog has been shared over 14,000 times on Facebook. There is even a Facebook fan page on him!

While I had a good laugh reading about the whole episode and the tweets, I also wondered what brands can learn from this incident. What stops Indian brands from experimenting beyond the usual in the social media? Bus I do recall two campaigns that caught on the entire nation’s attention not too long ago – the ‘Pink Chaddi’ campaign and the ‘Meter Jam’ campaign. What started as a small initiative, soon burgeoned into a movement involving people from all walks of life.

I am sure there will be several more examples from around the world. And brands can do well to learn from them, which have been largely social campaigns, and adapt them to gain maximum mileage from social media.

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