activism

Marketing Monday: Giving Tuesday 2014

Not matter how you feel about giving money, donating, tithing, or volunteering, I think we can all agree that it’s fun that online has their own version of Cyber Monday in the way of Giving Tuesday. Sure it’s a poke at the consumerism of the season and vaguely self congratulatory but it’s hash tag heart seems to be in the right place.

givingtuesdayhomepage

It started a few years ago as a hashtag and a way to raise awareness about non-profit causes but now they’re a lot more organized. There is a website and coordinated efforts between Crowdrise (an online donation platform), Indiegogo (an online fundraising platform), the White House, and others.

If you look at the Giving Tuesday logo, you’ll see it’s a pretty clever mixture of a hashtag and a heart. Nice!givingtuesdaylogo



Whether you give your time or money or both, Giving Tuesday asks that we all give something today.

Leading up to this event, we have seen lots of marketing efforts in the way of educational videos and the use of the hashtag #UNselfie on especially the more visual social networks like Instagram to raise awareness about giving to those in need. Here are some things last week already showing up:

unselfieinstagram

Despite being a global idea, the Giving Tuesday website is highlighting campaigns in specific geographic areas as well:

minicampaignsusa

It also seems as if organizations have taken this time to use this time to educate their user base. This Heiffer International post and accompanying infographic I thought were particularly good examples of taking the opportunity to have a conversation:

mcupload_529cf3d74253c

So we hope you consider doing something, online or offline, for Giving Tuesday. It’s a great sentiment and something we could all stand to remember this time of year where we spend lots of money to realize we could spend some of our finances and effort on something that makes a bit more impact than that scarf your brother probably won’t even like anyway.

(And if you know someone who needs one, we’re doing online donation forms for dayz.)

Happy #GivingTuesday!

Marketing Monday: Project Unbreakable

Domestic violence is a cause pretty close to my heart, for a mainly selfish reason.

I (at one point) thought I was too smart, too straight-forward, too butt-kicking to be in an abusive relationship. It was years ago since it happened but I still remember the yelling, the put downs, and one fateful night, a shove against a wall. He left the apartment and I felt small and powerless. I remember calling my parents (they were super calm and helpful). I hung up the phone and looked into the darkness, vowing to myself I’d never be there again and, if it were in my power, if I got out of this, I would do everything I could to keep even just one other person out of that situation.

I really appreciate all the work the internet has done, in particular in the last year, to really putting domestic violence, sexism, and harassment out in the open. Because let’s face it, no one starts by just walking up to a woman and hitting her or worse. There is an escalation… and an acceptance that turns into actions.

This video (where a woman is repeatedly harassed while walking in New York City) shows that it doesn’t matter what you wear, where you go, how much education you have, or anything else that we live in a society that treats women as objects: to be looked at, commented on, and even acted on at times.

And while it’s nice to wear purple and donate to charities that support anti-abuse programs, there is something really powerful about sharing your story and showing the world ‘this happened to me too.’ Not only the individual stories but the sheer number of people can produce change, in small and large ways.

This step can affect your friends and family… but most people don’t want to start a whole website about an abusive incident, several incidences, or a relationship. There is power in collecting these stories and sharing them with each other on a website and/or social media account already set aside for the purpose.

projectunbreakabletumblr

Project Unbreakable has done just that. With their Tumblr blog, website, Twitter account, Instagram account, and Facebook page, they are accepting submissions of photos and sharing them with the world.

What I like is not only can the victims share what their abusers have said (as long or as short a quote as they want), they can also decide whether to show their faces or not.

tumblr_ndtktr10KP1r65rllo2_500

 

nofaceshareprojectunbreakable

In our bite sized, social media world, the message is short and clear. Also women (mainly women are victims anyway), are getting supportive comments through the sharing of their story:

projectunbreakablefacebookcomments

As a visual share, we are able to connect with victims from identifying with their surroundings to identifying with a phrase, even if it is written in another language (the caption is usually translated into English).



The popularity of this group has allowed it not only to fundraise and grow for itself but has made it visible enough to partner with other websites like Buzzfeed to increase the general awareness of domestic violence.

pubuzzfeedpartnership

And whether submitting directly to Project Unbreakable itself or using the hashtag, people can take part in the message:

projectunbreakablehashtagontwitter

No matter what cause is most dear to you, whether it’s animal rights, the rain forests, or anything else, we’d like to encourage you to not only get involved in the way of donating and volunteering with these organizations but follow them online and help them spread their message by contributing your part to the story. Use a hashtag or submit your idea to the organization itself. Yes you are just one voice but by connecting with others, you are creating powerful forces for good.

Marketing Monday: Time Warner Cable

Every Monday, it’s an example of a business, non-profit, or website doing something interesting to promote itself online. Got an idea? Let me know!

Now I’m not a big fan on national cable companies but I thought how Time Warner is handling their Disney/ABC negotiations pretty interesting.

They are keeping customers informed via email.

I’ve gotten a few updates about the current negotiations via Time Warner Cable email (and yes, I opted not to receive anything extra). I haven’t unsubscribed because these emails aren’t frequent. Also in their favor is they tend to be short and all driving customers to another website if they want longer versions of anything:http://www.rolloverorgettough.com/

They are driving their customers to a separately branded website.

Time Warner needs to keep running its day-to-day operations going on their company website, and these cable negotiations are a small part of what it does. So, for this ‘campaign’ they’ve set up a different website for educational (and political) purposes. I appreciate how they have their company name in the sidebar (as in they aren’t pretending to be some third party group). But it is smart of them to keep their advocacy separate from their business, at least in terms of branding.



An informative graphic: saying more to people than they'd typically read.

An informative graphic: saying more to people than they'd typically read.

They are concentrating on education versus telling people what to think.

With graphics like the one above and other visual (and written) information, Time Warner isn’t telling customers what to think or do. Instead, they are educating and providing a forum. As anyone who has ever taught can tell you, allowing someone to discover for themselves (versus telling them) not only helps them learn better but helps them take ownership of the knowledge. Time Warner wants its customers to protest ABC/Disney’s price increases because they understand that the price increases mostly go to the programmers.

(Actually if you think of the info graphic above, not taken into account are the costs paid to run ABC/Disney’s business. Also if I did this for my business, you’d see almost the entire Breaking Even dollar goes to run Breaking Even Communications but that’s another story all together…)

In other words, if your company or non-profit is doing some advocacy around a specific issue, it might be a good idea to set up a different website.

I feel like there are other businesses/groups doing this separate website for an agenda idea but much less transparently… Can you think of any?