Wed, August 27 2008
Filed under: Marketing essentials •
On NPR this morning, I heard an unusual story about New Orleans - it chronicled the way people’s lives and life outlooks are improving there on this anniversary of Katrina. The relatively rare reporting of good news was probably great news to people in New Orleans:
After hearing so many of the positive changes and innovative projects post-Katrina, we’ve decided enough is enough. It’s time to put an end to the negative press in mainstream media. We know that the levees broke. We know that our city is dysfunctional. We know that. But do you know about Prospect.1? Or about the influx of young professionals into New Orleans? The world needs to know about the NEW New Orleans. And to quote Brad Pitt, “If you’re going to rebuild something, why not rebuild it right?” Amen brother.
This is the sentiment behind New Orleans 100, an effort to highlight the most innovative and world-changing ideas to take root in the city since Katrina. All Day Buffet, which is leading the effort, is working via social media to spread the word about these ideas and to “combat top-down media during the anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.”
Here’s what I like about this effort:
-It’s a list (and lists are always good, sticky ideas)
-It’s collaborative and celebrates many organizations
-It’s specific and tangible
-They did a nice pitch to me as a blogger
While we’re on the topic of Katrina, if you’ve never read it, check out the White Paper we did here at Network for Good on disaster giving. It shows how it fast - and fleetingly - people give in response to a crisis.
P.S.: I hope Gustav stays away.
Wed, August 27 2008
Filed under: Social Media •
Disclaimer: These results are not typical. This story is the fundraising equivalent of the bikini-clad woman in the Slimfast ad - a special success story.
Okay, so you may not have hundreds of Twittering friends at the ready or even know what the heck is a Gnomedexer, but there are some lessons here.
The messenger is everything. If you want to raise money, get people who like you to ask their friends and family for funds on your behalf. When Beth reached out to her community - in person and online - people responded.
Well-networked messengers are gold. When those fans of yours have extensive online networks, they can touch an amazing number of people.
The simpler and easier the ask, the bigger the conversion. Asking people to make a $10 with a few clicks is not a big request, and so it’s hard to say no to it.
People are total conformists. Once people see their peers doing something, they’ll follow. Beth got a bunch of technically inclined people to reach out to their networks in public, and that’s peer pressure on steroids. Social norms, meet social networks.
Tangibility is key. Beth didn’t raise money for “girl’s education in Cambodia.” She asked people to help a specific young woman with her college education. That makes a big difference.
Transparency is essential. A ticker with real-time results measured against a tangible goal makes people feel trusting - and compelled toa ct.
Thank-yous are appreciated. Beth is great at thanking people, recognizing them and celebrating what their donations accomplished. That kind of gratitude is the happy ending to a fabulous fundraising campaign.
Thanks Beth for the inspiration. And for all you do for Cambodia, a place very close to my heart.
Mon, August 25 2008
Filed under: Fun stuff •
Thanks to the AMA for having me on the show!
Fri, August 15 2008
Filed under: Fun stuff •
I’m going to be on the AMA’s Marketing News Radio on August 20 at noon Eastern/9am Pacific to talk about my book, Robin Hood Marketing.
It’s free to listen - and the first five callers into the show get a free copy of the book!
Here are the details.
Fri, August 15 2008
Filed under: Websites and web usability •
As promised in yesterday’s post, Bryan at Collective Lens has been kind enough to provide these tips, as well as these stunning photos, generously shared by the talented Shehzad Noorani and Kathy Adams.
copyright Shehzad Noorani
Sathi’s (8 years old) face is blacked with carbon dust from recycled batteries. Often she looks so black, that children in her neighborhood call her ghost. She works in battery recycling factory at Korar Ghat on the outskirts of Dhaka. She earns less than Taka 200 ($3.50 approx) per month.
Kathy Adams, Empowerment International
Look Mom, I CAN count! Empowerment International works with not just students in Nicaragua but also their parents. Getting the parents involved and supportive of their child’s education is one key to success in completing at least primary school (in a nation where only 50% of the enrolled 1st graders complete 5th grade).
- Use photos to tell a story. “A picture is worth 1000 words,” as they say. Imagery can go much further than written text to bring out the events and emotions of a particular cause or issue. One photo can describe a pressing situation, warm the heart of the viewer, or cause your audience to react and respond. Furthermore, with multiple photos organized into a photo essay, an entire story can be told from the big picture to the smallest details in an efficient and effective manner.
- Use photos to grab the attention of the viewer. In today’s media-driven society, words alone can not compete for the attention of your desired audience. With television, movies, YouTube, texting, and millions of competing websites, your message must make an instantaneous impact. This is especially true if you are vying for the attention of today’s youth. If your message is text only, you should not expect most people to read more than five sentences. Lead with a powerful photo.
- Use photos to create an emotional impact. Human faces attract the viewer’s eye faster than any other subject matter. Use this to your advantage, and display photos that showcase the human impact of an important issue and the work that your organization is doing around it.
- Copyright issues are extremely important. If you see a photo on the web, you are most likely not allowed to use it. The photographer has full copyrights to the photo unless otherwise noted. However, it doesn’t hurt to ask for permission! Many photographers would be delighted to hear from you, especially if you’re using the photo for a good cause. Keep in mind that the production of good photography costs money and is a career for many people. Also, many websites such as Collective Lens and Flickr allow photographers to mark their photos with Creative Commons licenses, and then allow the public to search for photos marked with these licenses. These licenses allow others to freely use the photos, but only under certain conditions, and always with attribution. For example, a photo marked with a Creative Commons Non Commercial license (CC-BY-NC) can not be used for commercial or advertising purposes. However, it is permissible to use it in an editorial story. It is also important to note that the people in the photos have rights as well. If a photo is to be used for commercial purposes, then every identifiable person in the photo must sign a release. If a photographer does not have releases, then he or she should have marked the photo with a Creative Commons Non Commercial license. Sometimes copyright rules can get complicated, but don’t let that deter you from asking questions if you have doubts about a photo. If all else fails, email the photographer and ask for permission.