I think it’s safe to publish my #nomakeupselfie post now. I vowed I wouldn’t be that person. But here goes…
Unless you've been under a rock for the last month and a bit you know what it is. But for all you rock dwellers…
Lots of people didn't like it for all sorts of reasons. I’m not going to talk about those things.
From a fundraising point of view I loved it. I loved it because it wasn't created by someone like me.
We (marketing types) spend hours and hours figuring out how to create these moments, how to engage the masses in our causes, how to ‘cough’ make something go viral…
But in this case, no one that worked for a charity started it. Who ever started it probably doesn't profess to understand what donors really want, doesn't have any opinion on supporter engagement or the supporter experience and who ever started it definitely doesn't have a blog, an agency or something to sell. Which is fabulous.
It worked because people reacted to something. Whether it was a reaction to the pointlessness of posting a selfie or something else is irrelevant. It happened because a) it could and b) the tech to make it happen was in the hands of everyone who got involved.
Think about what was actually happening…
Your mobile phone vibrates. It’s a Facebook notification.
You've been tagged and challenged to take part by someone you know.
Your mate has done it so you feel you should do it as well.
You take your selfie on your mobile phone.
You post your selfie to Facebook, from your mobile phone.
You make a text donation from your mobile phone.
I'd argue that it could not have happened without our relationship with our mobile phone.
We love our phones.
We keep them close at all times.
We access Facebook on our phones, a lot.
We like taking pictures on our mobiles, a lot.
We message on our phones, a lot.
And all our phones come with a simple and quick response device.
So if we're moved to give we can give in seconds.
It’s that last bit that’s the hard bit. Moving people to give. Anyone can stamp a shortcode and keyword onto a train ad or into a tweet. The real magic is in creating the reason for people to give. And in this case it wasn't the creative team, the mobile team or the planners that did it. It wasn't any of us. Which is awesome.
We're going to be seeing much more of this type of thing. It won't all be at this scale. But if there is a real reason to give, a reason that real people grab hold of and promote, our role will change. Our key role will be to provide the technology for it happen. And then stand back and make sure that what happens next is just as awesome.