Tuesday, May 5, 2009

How to Market a Movement - 7 lessons

Let's face it. Social entrepreneurship requires marketing just like any other new idea. And suffering as it does from being neither charity nor business, its business model ires investors and philanthropists alike. But when the Internet started, there was no clear business model either, so I remain undaunted. What makes people flock to new ideas? I think its all in the buzz, the art of creating a movement that people want to be a part of. So I went to hear the buzz-meister Geno Church (of WOMMIE, EFFIE and ADDY awards fame) of Brains on Fire (brainsonfire.com) at the NewComm Forum 2009. His specialty is creating a Word of Mouth (WOM) movement using "brand ambassadors". His brand ambassadors are not highly paid celebrities, but unknown people who are not paid. They build a movement because they want to, and so it grows. His 7 key factors are:
1. WOM marketing is built on passion - find people to be brand ambassadors who are passionate about the cause
2. Have inspirational leadership
3. Empower people with knowledge - provide hard data to ambassadors for their use
4. Encourage ownership
5. Make advocates/members feel like rock-stars
6. Create supportive communities that live on-line and off-line - bring people together 5x a yr
7. Move the Media - practice random acts of advocacy
Rage Against the Haze (South Carolina's youth led anti-tobacco movement) started with just $800K in funding which was used to train the ambassadors - called viralmentalists. The movement consisted of kids talking to other kids about smoking as a choice. In the end he says, the power lies in supporting a cause, enabling an experience and telling a story. Now if we can translate the lessons to creating a buzz around the field of social entrepreneurship!


celina said...

I was passing over the Agriculture business Network, i found this one to be most suitable for everyone...thanks for your post too,,,

Bhalchander said...

Nice post.