I love Bret Michaels.  There, I said it. Back in 1988 I was into all kinds of heavy metal and hard rock.  I loved Metallica, Gun’s and Roses, Whitesnake, Skid Row, Motley Crue,  Van Halen, Ozzy Osbourne the list goes on. Essentially the louder and more testosterone charged the music, the more I loved it.

But then there was this softer “poppier” version of the music I was banging my head to. These guys wore make-up, but not kick ass scary make up like Kiss. Poison had this odd androgyny thing going.  But there they were bouncing around the stage singing Talk Dirty to Me, and UnSkinny Bop – I was hooked. Girls liked them too, and that was good.  So when I was in 8th grade I went to see Bret’s band Poison perform up in Hartford Connecticut with two of my best friends Mike Fennessy and Steve Singlak.  My friend Steve’s Dad drove us, and hung out in the parking lot while we enjoyed the concert (that’s a good Dad)…thank you Mr. Singlak.

The opening act was a band called Slaughter.  Remember that band? Slaughter was actually the lead singer’s last name…or so they said…but I digress.  The audience certainly enjoyed their opening act. But were were all waiting for Poison.

The lights dimmed, the crowd roared, and Poison finally took the stage.

Bret Michaels

First song, first chord and I’m on my feet pumping my fist.  The familiar opening riff to Talk Dirty to Me.  I’m in rock heaven.  I mean seriously into it. I want to be Bret Michaels, but it’s too soon to go this crazy. Prematureseemed to be the theme of  my 8th grade self, but that’s a whole other blog post.

My section hadn’t stood up yet.  That is until Bret turns to the nose bleeds on the right side of the stage, points to me (this is my memory, stop mocking me) and proceeds to pump his fist in the same adolescent, testosterone, semi modified guido air pump that I was doing.  At this point I’m out of my mind. I’m screaming the lyrics at top of my lungs, jumping up and down. The whole section is now up and we’re loving it.  CC is rockin’…Bret is doing his thing, and all is good with our 1988 Hot Tub Time Machine moment.

From that moment on Chris Dessi = Bret Michaels fan for life. Hence, why I love me some Bret Michaels. It’s OK, because my wife, along with 99.99% of anyone I’ve ever met knows this about me.

Let’s review:

    1. Rock Star connects with audience member with a look, point, fist pump together = Fan for life
    2. Rock Star doesn’t look, no point, no first pump together = Innocuous hair band wiped from mid-pubescent memory.
    1. Personal connection to the kid in the last row = good
    2. No Personal connection = bad.

What the heck does all of this have to do with Bret’s Twitter Account? As I write this, Bret Michael’s last three tweets that his handlers have synced up with his Facebook account start with the term “Come to”…see below

Come to “Bret Michaels LIVE @ Viejas Casino in Alpine, CA ” Friday, October 22 from 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm. Tickets:… http://fb.me/E9M0lxA9 about 8 hours ago via Facebook

Come to “Bret Michaels LIVE @ Casino Nova Scotia in Halifax, NS ” Saturday, October 9 from 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm…. http://fb.me/DAMMi9Yx

Come to “Bret Michaels LIVE @ Casino Nova Scotia in Halifax, NS ” Friday, October 8 from 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm…. http://fb.me/F6UI73XD

Twitter FAIL. That’s too much “Come to” even for a rock star…

Obviously Bret Michaels is super charismatic. His resurgence into the mainstream is testament to that. He has the “it” factor times ten. He dates super hot women on a silly reality show. He has two gorgeous little girls. He won celebrity apprentice while he was fighting for his life. This is the time for Bret (or Bret’s handlers to leverage the heck out of social media). Show his human side that people gravitate to.  Let him connect with his fans the way he connected to a kid in the nose bleeds back in 1988.

If I were handling his account I would allow him to be himself via Twitter. Show him how to use it, give him some tips and trick and he’s off to the races. Or if he’s that busy, I’d sit there and tell him what people are saying to him on Twitter and let him tell you what to say back. It will help this semi-aging rocker propel his career (which was waning) back into the stratosphere.

1. Pushing out concert updates = aging rock star oblivion

2. Engaging with the Twitter community = Rock Star

I love Bon Jovi and Cinderella too.

Rock on.

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Chris Dessi on CNN

Hey there, thanks for reading!  My name is Chris Dessi. I’m the founder and CEO of Silverback Social.  I’m also the founder of the Westchester Digital Summit, and the author of Your World is Exploding: How Social Media is Changing Everything and How You Need to Change With It.  

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