COM0015 – Blog #4: Out of the Box

In the course of this program, I have come across all manner of applications of social media tools and platforms, from fun and quirky to serious and sentimental.

You can browse Mustache Groups at stachepassions.com to find members by their preferred 'stache style.

You can browse Mustache Groups at stachepassions.com to find members by their preferred ‘stache style.

Personally I have been most intrigued with cause-related social media applications, where people work to advocate, raise awareness, or mobilize. I suppose it brings a distinctly human element to the use of social technology that warms me to its growing role in society a little more.

A recent story about actress Freida Pinto helping to feed hundreds with leftover food from Oscar events shone a spotlight Copia, a San Francisco-based company that developed an app that allows hotels, restaurants and grocery stores to call for a pick-up of leftover food to help feed communities in need. So there are two great applications of social media tools profiled here – Copia’s technology that helps reduce food waste and redistribute it to those in need, and Freida Pinto’s leverage of her social network on Instagram to raise the profile of people bridging the gap between excess and need.

In online marketing, I thought this “Social Price Drop” campaign by the UK grocery chain Lidl was pretty clever. For four weeks around the 2016 Christmas season, the company generated fun and excitement by allowing its customers to control pricing on four popular holiday items, promising that the more they tweeted about the product (eg. Christmas pudding), the more the price would drop. The campaign was a success, according to Rise founder and CEO Toby Beresford, “because there was a real incentive to share socially”. Brilliant!

 

Have you come across memorable cause-related social campaigns? Tell me about them!

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