1999 and the internet was still a relatively new thing. It had only been in my house barely 6 months and there was some media hype going around about a new film coming out called “The Blair Witch Project”. I know, a stark contrast to why we are here but stay with me! When I went to see it I was fully hyped and ridiculously scared. Not because it was a particularly scary film and was so suggestive throughout that looking through practical eyes there is very little there to be scared of at all. The reason I was scared? The online media campaign. No Facebook, Twitter or Instagram back then, but there was a website for the film and one that still stands out to me to this day for being a piece of marketing genius. It wasn’t just a glorified poster of the film with a trailer embedded. It had background stories and videos of things that weren’t in the film. I read and watched them all and they are what brought me to the point of fear when coming to watch it in the Cinema.
How on earth does this link to Jeff? Allow me to ramble on a bit more…
I sometimes wonder how better life was (or would be) without social media, I find it can be a very negative experience all too often. I would hate to be a child having to go through school in the social media age. I have often semi-jested that we aren’t mature enough as a (global) society for us to be allowed the privilege of social media. Then you look at the good it does. For myself my, favourite part is that it keeps me in touch and up-to-date with friends lives, of those friends who I may have otherwise lost contact with (anyone remember friendsreunited.com?).
I have always been a Facebook user (except for the first 9 months where I was very lonely on something called “Facebox” as I had misheard my friend when he was explaining Facebook to me). I only ever dabbled in Instagram and really only ever use Twitter to complain.
For businesses it seems it is now compulsory; I’ve often thought it very weird if I ever come across a business now that isn’t on at least one of the main players in the field. So now I have 6 accounts across 3 sites. 3 for me, 3 for Jeff. Technically Jeff has more than me as he also has his own website, I do not. It has been very interesting seeing how my use has changed and how I manage/interact with Jeff’s social media accounts compared to my own. Jeff’s main window into the online world is Instagram (or the online world’s window to wave at Jeff), I didn’t consciously pick this as the main forum for his venture to the masses, but he and his personality are so photogenic it just made natural, simple sense.
It also helps that I can use Instagram to feed the other accounts, meaning I do relatively little so far on the others. I say “I”. This is all Jeff obviously, I am just his Social Media PA, Executive Assistant to Jeffrey Elefanté, CEO (Chief Elephant Officer) of Elefanté Publications. I keep reading articles for tips and tricks and using these whilst trying to keep it fairly simple, straightforward and most importantly, enjoyable. The top two common ones tips are, 1. post regularly and 2. like other people’s photos. However just from those two points it feels like it’s become an industry all in itself. I have a social media schedule to remind me when and what to post to keep up a rhythm and given the kinds of things Jeff likes, it is rather enjoyable to go through an endless number of pictures of elephants and various other animals and such and feels like a better use of my time than wasting hours playing Candy Crush.
I was only celebrating with him at the end of last week at 200 followers – we are already up to 275 (305 at the point of publishing this blog). Quite a low number compared to some others, but it is (hopefully) heading in the right direction and will continue on that trajectory – Jeff goes all coy with every follow or like. So he has been coy a lot lately.
As I have ideas for future blog topics, I scribble down a heading and jot some notes. The notes for this are only a couple of weeks hold and I had made mention of ’25 Instagram posts’ – It is 55 now. What I can already see, from my own development, is how in this short space of time, the pictures posted look better and more thematic than the first 10-15 posts. What am I posting? Well if you haven’t had a look already head over to www.instagram.com/jeffreyelefante/ and have a look! It is becoming a mix of photos of Jeff and the rest of his friends (mainly Moo), along with Jokes, Jeffinitions, Elephant Facts and sometimes whatever is on TV or popular at the time.
Linking back to The Blair Witch Project, and what I/he/we hope to have, is a social media presence that ends up complementing and going hand-in-hand with the books. Anyone who is following him on Instagram should find something familiar in the books and may find a teeny bit more enjoyment from them with having an insight into Jeff’s personality and world. It would also work both ways; Anyone that comes across and enjoys one of the books, may then go on to Instagram and find a bit of enjoyment in discovering more about Jeff and providing further background to the books. The beauty of this is that you don’t need both, and can enjoy one without the other. People enjoyed The Blair Witch without obsessing over the website like I did, though I would think that those that did buy into the background of it all had a layer of depth that added to their enjoyment of the film.
Apologies if this blog is a bit all over the place but I started typing it very early on a Monday morning.
Jeff’s still reeling in his coyness from all the attention, but for anyone who is engaging with this, in whatever form, a big thank you from the both of us.