This week’s PR 2.0 chat (#pr20chat on Twitter) focused on cause-related marketing, and featured special guest Willa Shalit, CEO of Fairwinds Trading, and the genius behind the Heart of Haiti program. (In March, I visited Haiti with Willa and a handful of bloggers, where we discovered a country full of hope and resiliency.)
Talk about nuggets of brilliance flowing from a conversation! Here’s a brief summary of some of my favorite tweets from the chat. As you think about cause-marketing for your own company or clients, keep these tips and pointers in mind:
Question 1: What are some creative, effective cause-marketing/community relations campaigns? What makes them stand out?
“Dawn dishwashing liquid during the Gulf Oil Spill with wildlife messaging on bottle.” — @kmohara
“I love the In-n-Out cause marketing campaign in April for child abuse awareness month.” — @Sue_Anne
Question 2: How is social media improving cause-marketing? What are some potential problems & tips to avoid?
“Social media helps immensely bc Cause becomes Dialogue instead of Monologue, much more powerful” — @WillaShalit
“it improves the ability to make a message heard, but too often I am seeing sloppy messaging now! You still need a crafted msg” — @DaffronMkt
“The challenge remains, how to motivate people to take ACTION once they tweet or post a status … I’ve pledged to not tweet an ask about a particular cause, unless I have directly supported it myself.” — @msciocia
Question 3: How can @heartofhaiti sustain awareness even as ppl’s attention has shifted away from Haiti? Let’s brainstorm!
“Love all the thoughts abt sharing personal stories. Every1 wants to hear a success story and how they can help the nxt one.” — @alishaisgo
“Maybe reach out to different US galleries to see if they’d be interested in a Haitian art exhibit?” — @Pink_Katillac
“Also? LOTS of Haitians in the US. Talk to them about sharing personal stories/why they love the country.” — @cubanalaf
“Must overcome ‘waiting for news’ strategy re Haiti; needs a campaign to stand on its own legs” — @elissapr
Question 4: How can nonprofits or causes identify the right online influencers? Must they be connected to cause, or is social reach/influence more important?
“like most things, it’s a combination. Who connects strongly enough with your cause AND is willing to spread the word.” — @shonali
“You want someone who will do what they say they will do. I’ll take one passionate advocate over ten retweeters any day” — @danfarkas
“Two-fold: Create a foundation of ambassadors, but strive for a domino effect – awareness is key.” — @cubanalaf
Question 5: Can businesses position themselves as good corporate citizens? How? What about when biz isn’t typically seen as the giving-type?
“When not seen as “giving type,” biz have to show ppl they’re doing things, not just talk into the ether” — @JohnCassillo
“i give credit to co’s tht support causes with PR restraint. to me it shows credible commitment, character” — @cloudspark
“Of course, they can. But, “giving back” must be more than a shallow effort or an empty check.” — @thefabgiver
“A good corporate citizen goes beyond simply having a philanthropy. It must be a part of the organization’s values” — @valeriesimon
Question 6: How can nonprofits stay top-of-mind without always asking for money/volunteers/etc? What other content do you find helpful?
“Non-profits also need to get savvier about promoting success stories. People want 2 b part of successful organizations.” — @itsRobynwithay
“ask those helped by the cause to share their stories. Share with the broader community.” — @jonnew
“Storytelling is a great way to keep your message alive. Also find a way to get them involved with causes via pledges/petitions” — @Sue_Anne
“Well, to repeat the question, yes, STOP ASKING FOR MONEY. get involved in outside endeavors. Be a presence elsewhere.” — @transpr
Question 7: Are bloggers facing “cause overload?” If they’re starting to feel maxed out, how can nonprofits cut through the clutter?
“Truthfully it’s hard to turn down a NP – even stories you didn’t think you’d feel pull from hit you – have to focus on impact.” — @alishaisgo
“And this is the tough cycle 4 NPs. Ppl I respect asking cuts through clutter. But is possible to over-ask same groups of ppl.” — @jgoldsborough
“Research and targeting those bloggers that really “fit.”" — @stephgail
“yes, I think so. IMHO that’s all the more reason for causes/NPs to build a strong community & online footprint.” — @shonali
PR 2.0 Chat takes place every Tuesday from 8-9 pm ET. Anyone is welcome to join the conversation, which focuses on various aspects of public relations and social media trends, best practices and what’s next. Hope to see you on Twitter!
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