While Pennsylvania State Treasurer Joe Torsella has been on Twitter for a while, the new official Twitter for the Pennsylvania Treasury Department was launched just a few weeks ago, and it is growing fast.
Since launching, @PATreasury has attracted attention and hundreds of new followers with an informal tweeting style and a proclivity for animated skeleton GIFs.
Another week in the books, and with all the money taken care of, it’s time to head into the dang weekend and watch Toy Story 4. pic.twitter.com/aUzBkIZ0nw— Pennsylvania Treasury (@PATreasury) July 5, 2019
In a tweet thread explaining the genesis of @PATreasury, one of two unnamed social media staffers who run the account said, “We decided to create the account and get kind of weird with it, but hopefully not too weird.” The authentic take got the eye of many in the Pennsylvania Twitterverse, and the follows started to pile up.
The weeks-old account has racked nearly 1,500 followers, most of them in the past few days. Just last week the account had fewer than 100 followers. WESA’s Chris Potter heralded the account as “among the top three” best statewide row office accounts on Twitter already. (There are two others.)
When it’s the last day of the fiscal year. pic.twitter.com/s8FLTNqBOq— Pennsylvania Treasury (@PATreasury) June 29, 2019
Mike Connolly, Deputy State Treasurer for Communications, told City Paper in an email that the Twitter account was a method that people “don’t normally see from a government agency” of engaging with Pennsylvanians and sharing information about Treasury programs. Torsella has also been active in promoting his advocacy for removing Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg from leading the tech company’s board, and has pressured him to do using the shares Pennsylvania owns in Facebook.
According to the Treasury, it’s gotten five times more website traffic from Twitter this week than it does in an average week. Specific tweets have pointed to a database that helps Pennsylvanians reunite with their unclaimed property and the “Transparency Portal,” which lets viewers track the spending of state funds.
“Pennsylvania Treasury’s programs are for all Pennsylvanians, no matter what they’re into — sports, dog memes, Netflix shows,” Connolly said in the email. “With this account, we’re hoping to break through the noise and connect more with the people we serve.”