Social media will help promote uptown’s attributes

December 8, 2009 at 11:48 am 2 comments

This article appeared today in the Telegraph Journal.  It is really exciting to see this move happen in our fabulous city.  I have been using the website since its soft launch online and it is fantastic!  Plus, they have been nice enough to link my blog on the site. 🙂

SAINT JOHN – Port City area residents now have a new way of finding out what’s going on uptown. 

Tonight Uptown Saint John Inc. will officially launch its revamped website, which is part of a strategy to engage people in the city in uptown life. The site,, features all the regular listings of places to shop, eat, play, sleep, and enjoy artistic and cultural activities, as well as an events calendar. But the organization has also moved into social media providing links to its Facebook and Twitter accounts and a list of blogs about uptown Saint John.

“We generally have had the notion that we could be doing better in terms of having a site that more people could use and could be gravitated to,” Uptown Saint John Inc. general manager Peter Asimakos said. “Our site will have just about anything that’s going on uptown on it.”

The site and social media push is being run by Craig Allen, a local web marketing consultant.

“Uptown Saint John is being a little forward thinking here in realizing the power of the web to bring their larger community together,” he said.

On the social networking and micro-blogging website Twitter, the organization has registered the hashtag #livelifeuptown, which users can use to send out 140-character messages about what’s happening uptown. This makes it easier to search what people are saying about Uptown Saint John and the website keeps the list accessible for people that don’t use Twitter.

“Whenever somebody wants to know what’s going on uptown right this second they’ll be able to search that via twitter,” Allen said. “If that can catch on, it will give people a totally new way to experience uptown, where they’re getting results and insights from the community instantly.”

Kurt Peacock, an Uptown Saint John board member and heritage building-owner in the city centre, said he hopes this will help increase impromptu gatherings.

“Throughout the city’s merchant history we’ve had a number of wonderful businesses and places to congregate in decades past,” he said. “We’re hoping many of the small businesses in the city core will be able to become the next legendary seller or providers of goods.

“Because of its urban density, Saint John has always been a place to meet and greet, you literally bump into your neighbour all the time,” he said. “What makes this so special is if you miss your neighbour you can issue an update on the uptown Twitter feed and they’ll know where to meet you.”

The website also has an interactive members directory, where businesses can add photos, events, and any specials they have. This information is automatically added to the events calendar.

“There’s always an up-to-date events calendar,” Allen said. “It gives a lot of businesses a media outlet they didn’t have before.”

The website change comes as a result of suggestions from some of the organization’s board members who work in the technology sector, including Jeff Roach, executive director of Propel ICT Inc.

He said this is an emerging trend he suspects cities across North America will replicate.

“The opportunities to live life uptown need to come from the people,” he said, explaining websites such as Facebook and Twitter allow residents to contribute to the list of things to do uptown. “These are the things that don’t cost a lot of money, they just require a real understanding of how these shifts are occurring.”

I am hitting up the party as updater for FUSION Saint John events.  I am really excited to see how this grows!


Entry filed under: City Life, local business, News Article. Tags: , , , , , .

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Craig Allen  |  December 11, 2009 at 11:46 am

    Thanks for spreading the word on the new site Uptown Girl!

  • 2. mysaintjohn  |  December 12, 2009 at 2:16 am

    lol sadly no one would be crazy enough to link to mine (aside from my dearly loved, fellow SJ bloggers).


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