Having already written about SwipeGood and Ticket’sforchairty.com, I wanted to finish the week with one more example of an exciting use of social media to drive positive change. In my mind these aren’t just well-intended companies that deserve our full support, but rather each are signposts for the integration of purpose into profit that will redefine business practices in the future.
SocialVibe uses advertising to generate large scale micro-donations by tapping into people’s motivations and passions to use social media for social good. The idea behind SocialVibe’s charitable-giving model is simple. It allows people to give back to the causes they care about without ever asking them to open their own wallets. The cause-marketing platform harnesses the power of social media and enables users to support the charities they are passionate about simply by engaging with and sharing online brand activities with others.
In 2010, over one third of the top 100 largest advertisers launched campaigns incorporating incentivized social media engagements using SocialVibe, and the millions of hyper-connected consumers who participated shared brand messages with millions more.
For example, GE partnered with SocialVibe to create an engagement that enabled people to submit photos of wind, water, or light to raise money for charities that use wind, water, or light to help make a difference. Marriott used SocialVibe to create an engagement for their Make a Bed Program enabling users to make a virtual bed to generate a $2.00 donation to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Nestle supported their charity partner Dress for Success by allowing users to write notes of encouragement to women in the program, and Coffee-Mate donated $2.00 to the charity for every note sent.
At the same time SocialVibe has enabled brands such as Microsoft, Visa, Kraft, Nestle, Sony, Microsoft, Apple, Toyota, Procter & Gamble, and Macy’s to earn social captial and to reach these highly motivated consumers. SocialVibe CEO, Jay Samit, explains it this way:
“Just a few minutes a day…a click here…a post there….can inspire millions to give back to those in need. On average, SocialVibe users share brand campaigns with 170 of their friends and our members, their friends, and our advertisers continue to use social media for social good each day.”
Taken together, platforms, tools and apps like SwipeGood, SocialVest, Tickets For Charity and SocialVibe demonstrate the willingness and commitment of consumers to actively contribute to social change in partnership with brands. The more consumers demand a social conscience of brands, the more they can leverage their products, services and messaging power to scale social change. At the heart of this shift is social media that has enabled connections between people that are not only reinventing how business is done but also has the potential to remake out world.
Do you expect brands to play an active role in social change? Would you be willing to switch brands if they refuse?
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Simon Mainwaring is the founder of We First, a leading brand consultancy that provides purpose-driven strategy, content, and training that empowers companies to lead business, shape culture, and better our world.