ILCA Women’s Networking Group


How your cause can benefit from social media by Michelle Scott by ilcawng
May 21, 2009, 2:32 pm
Filed under: 1

One of the phrases we hear thrown about in the political arena is “grassroots organizing”.  Those are great words when something actually backs them up…like action. Action is what makes any campaign get off the ground, whether it be a political campaign, a fundraiser, or even just getting your organization/group out in front of the public.

The problem with this type of campaign begins when people don’t quite know how to go about getting something off the ground. They’re not sure where to start; they’re not sure what to say initially; and they sometimes don’t have a lot of time to put into it.

In this day and age…beginning a grassroots campaign is no longer a major issue or time consuming endeavor because of social media/networking. With a few clicks of the mouse and a some keystrokes anyone can feasibly begin a grassroots campaign that may be seen by thousands or even hundreds of thousands of people.

A few examples of how something small can gain momentum are put forth in The Learned Fangirl’s recent blog post. TLF has some excellent examples of how something small and seemingly insignificant can have a huge impact.

My favorite example is a small scale campaign that I had the pleasure of participating in. A friend teaches kindergarten in a school that didn’t have the funds to really support creative and artistic endeavors in the classroom. A small group of people were discussing the great drawings of this group of 5 year olds and felt one of them would make a great t-shirt. My friend rallied up her friends to find a t-shirt company and a method of selling the shirts with all net proceeds going to buy art supplies for her classroom.  She was a member of several online communities and put the word out…and in the end, made $3000 in a month’s time.  And the t-shirt we purchased to wear with pride was this, as drawn by a five year old in her class…

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So, what can you do to tap into this type of grassroots marketing for your company, your group, your organization? A lot of things!

  • Start a twitter account, get your customers/members to sign up and/or link to your account and send special offers, information, and updates through it
  • Create a Facebook page.  Invite people to become a part of the Facebook group or page. Regularly post information, ideas,  questions to encourage people to engage in a dialogue
  • Join the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA) or attend some of their events. They’re the experts on viral marketing of this nature and have a lot of great ideas to share in an effort to help you escalate your exposure
  • Join LinkedIn and create a network of thousands of people. I have only 15 people I’m directly linked to, but via their connections, my network is at 300,000 people. That’s a lot of people you can tap into by simply connecting with a few people!
  • and of course…start a blog! Blogging does take a little more time and effort, but can also lead to some great payoffs in the end.

Business as we know it is not going to be the frontrunner for much longer. These quick and easy, down and dirty methods of getting out there and connected are the wave of the future.  And that wave is coming quicker and quicker the more technology evolves. Jump on your social networking surfboard and ride it. Sure you might fall, get metaphorical water up your nose, and make mistakes…but in the end you’ll get the hang of it and gain exposure, business, friends, and some savvy skills.

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