Steve Spiro

I have a new job! Thanks, Twitter! by J.C. Hutchins

As many 7th Son fans know, I'm a Twitter evangelist. I use the tool in my everyday life, "tweeting" my moods, my wild ideas for new fiction ... and especially, my wily experiments in new media marketing. From my forthcoming "Operation Grid Failure" viral video project to my feel-good pet Stweet Team concept, I try to bend the boundaries of Twitter as a means of self expression, and a way to build communities. The Twitter karma gods have looked favorably on my constant use of their tool, and have granted me a boon.

In early December, I spotted an intruiging tweet from Twitter follower Jeffery Sass (@sass). It read: "I am hiring. Here's my 'social media' recruitment video." There was a link to the video below. That was it.

Curious, I watched the vid. You should, too.

It's an effective recruitment video, particularly when the rest of the country is in its December shivers. But for me, it resonated on another level. I recognized that pier. I recognized that beachfront skyline. Turns out Jeff's company, Myxer, is based minutes away from my South Florida home. I immediately DM'ed Jeff (that's "direct messaged" in tweetspeak), introduced myself, hinted about my involvement in podcasting and "zero budget" marketing, and left it at that. I suspected I'd have to later conduct the traditional "brainbreaking" exercise of educating him on podcasting and marketing.

No need, Jeff said in his reply. He was already a fan of my podcast fiction, and was well aware of my marketing and community-building techniques. That, friends, is a testament to social media, podcasting, and online marketing/networking.

And now, I'm proud to report that as of Tuesday, March 4, I will be working for Myxer as its Social Media Marketing Manager.

Myxer's slogan is "Go with it," a brilliant allusion to its service. A less-catchy alternative would be, "Never pay for a cellphone ringtone again." Myxer is the world's largest provider of user-generated ringtones and wallpapers ... all of which are created by normal folks like you and me. It's a savvy blend of MySpace-meets-content creation, where everyday people can create their own ringtones, download them to their phones, tell their friends, download others' ringtones and wallpapers and more. The best part: the service is completely free, the ringtone-creation service is simple to use, and nearly all of the content on the site is free. (Creators can charge for their ringtones, if they wish.)

The site has more than 6 million users. They've downloaded nearly 60 million files of content. There are more than 330,000 ringtones and wallpapers in the Myxer catalog -- 99 percent of which is free.

Free content, created by normal people. Longtime fans of my work know why this is a perfect philosophical match for me as an creator and Myxer employee. (The shorts-and-T-shirt dress policy doesn't hurt, either.)

So what will I be doing as the Social Media Marketing Manager for Myxer? (Dig that job title acronym: SMMMM. Gotta love it.) I'll be podcasting and blogging, and reaching out to content creators such as bands and podcasters -- yes, podcasters -- to create new, killer content for the Myxer site. I'll also be creating marketing projects to attract brand new users to the site. In essence, I'll be getting paid to do what I've been doing as a hobby for the past two years. I cannot begin to describe how excited I am to be part of the Myxer team.

Oh, and they're sending me to South By Southwest next week. Wicked cool.

I owe much of this to Myxer peeps Jeff Sass and Steve Spiro, who saw a great opportunity for Myxer to benefit from my expertise. And I absolutely owe even more to the more than 36,000 worldwide fans of my podcast fiction (who have downloaded nearly 2 million episodes of my content).

But for now, I'll give all the credit to Twitter ... and to the wise Twitter gods, who permitted a wonderful moment of serendipity in which I was online, reading tweets, at the moment that Jeff broadcasted his recruitment video. If Jeff had tweeted five minutes later, I never would have seen his video -- and wouldn't be getting paid to play in the space.

Tuesday can't come soon enough.