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I do not do this very often (not sure why, but I don’t), but I wanted to take the time to blog about work specifically.  In case you have forgotten, I work for this little cool startup (at least we like to think so) called Mixx.com.  Here at Mixx, one of the things that we pride ourselves on is our level of engagement with our user community.  In this day and age, you can find countless examples of how companies are engaging their users in new and interesting ways, that they have an open line of communication with their users, blah blah blah and so on and so on.  Yes, we can say all that too, and it is all true.  However, last week I think we took that level of engagement to a whole new level.

Let me set this up by saying that it is not uncommon for us to exchange e-mails with our users, hell we even get phone calls from some (you know who you are) and we even engage in a little tomfoolery with them from time to time.  Several months ago, a group of our users thought it would be a good idea to see who could come up with the funniest picture of me.  Trust me there were plenty, but one in particular took the cake.  I was a good sport and went along with it, knowing full well that after it’s 15 minutes of fame, I would never have to worry about it again.  Boy was I sadly mistaken.  For whatever reason (unbeknownst to me), someone decided to wake the sleeping giant.  This time around, I figured well those that live in glass houses should not cast stones, so I took t upon myself to have a little fun of my own.  In kind, I produced a picture that was equally as funny.  I could not just stop there, so I decided to submit the photo to Mixx and to tweet it out to all of my followers.  Well, needless to say that sparked a little battle and before I know it, the original picture of me was being retweeted all over the Twitterverse, and by some very influential people (social media speaking of course).  It was all in good fun, everyone got a good laugh, no harm no foul.

In running a company, whether it be online or off, engaging your users is critical to your success.  After all, they are ultimately the ones who wind up paying your bills, keeping your company alive and successful.  Finding new ways to engage them and stay connected is sometimes hard, but every once in awhile it happens by shear accident and is a huge success.  Am I advocating that you engage in the sort of  shenanigans that I found myself in (perhaps not if you are the faint of heart type), but there is no rule that says you should not or cannot have a little fun with your users.  We sure do, and it works.

In case you were wondering, here is the original pic of me and the one I retaliated with.  ENJOY!

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