Yearning for some insight from the person behind the brilliant Twitter feed @BPGlobalPR? Do not ask for any from @bpterry. Or the guy attending a conference wearing the funny mask alleging to being BP's PR mastermind behind the feed.
The man -- pretty sure he was a man -- behind @BPGlobalPR showed up in disguise at the TWTCON conference at the Hilton in midtown Manhattan on Monday, and unveiled BP's devious strategy of deflection and humor in managing spill communications.
"The first thing you need to do to get big on Twitter is destroy the Gulf of Mexico," he said.
Some of the earnest marketing and PR professionals in the audience were hoping for some insight on how one becomes the biggest Twitter phenomenon since, well, maybe since @shitmydadsays.
@BPGlobalPR is part of BP's scheme to get people to follow the company, he explained. Besides, who would follow the "real" BP on Twitter anyway?
"We're not solving problems, we're just directing the attention," he said. "That's what Twitter is all about. The problem is if you're a company trying to advertise something, you can't make people follow you. This isn't TV. You can't sell stuff on Twitter because no one likes ads."
"If you're going to tweet you've got to have something to say, some sort of purpose. You gotta connect with people."
Any advice for other corporations facing a crisis?
"Choose your facts, OK? Just give the people the facts you want to give. Find a villain, like Britain, for example. The fishermen; they're whining that they want a handout because we destroyed their economy. The photographers taking pictures ...who does that help? And, of course, the animals for getting in the oil in the first place."
After a few questions, @bpterry hopped off stage and ran for the exits. A few hours later, he was back at it on Twitter: "just spoke at twtrcon to a bunch of pickledicks. got martha stewarts #. had to run out quick. @ me if you want an interview NYC"