Creating A Positive Impact
The vast influence of social media on today’s up and coming world can be seen through various outlets of communication. Most importantly is the reach of social media networks on the millions of people who interact via them daily. Companies have begun to utilize these social media networks for monetary and professional gain, but the real impact of these social media networks can be seen through an examination of the sites themselves.
The electronic dissemination of media facilitated by social media networks such as Twitter has had an effectual result on society as a whole. Digital media has sped the circulation of information faster than ever and has allowed for a greater reach. With this incredible open exchange of information, the opportunity for social change has presented itself through social media. One of the largest organizations involved in social media today, Twitter, has attempted to utilize their circulation of knowledge for social positive efforts with the launch of the Hope140 initiative. Terming their effort’s driving principle as a result from their company’s core desire to making a lasting impact, the Hope140 campaign supports various causes to be a force for good. The three broad causes Twitter currently supports, listed on the front page of the website, include #hope4Japan, International Literacy Day, and Help Haiti Now.
Utilizing Twitter’s platform of microblogging in messages containing 140 characters or less, the social media network seeks to raise money and awareness for various good crusades. The #EndMalaria campaign hosted by the Hope140 initiative featured a TwitPay platform for donations, and even Twitter users participated in World Malaria Day by retweeting and making donations of $10. This led to The Case Foundation matching donations with a $25,000 grant. This effort led by Twitter showcased the social media network’s potential as more than an awareness tool for non-profits. The campaign as a whole supports various donation methods for social change. The earthquake relief fund called #hope4Japan urges people to make a positive movement in a global effort to support a critical cause by making a donation to the American Red Cross. By tweeting #hope4Japan, Twitter seeks to spread the word of the disaster to help raise relief efforts.
The Hope140 website, created by Twitter to focus on social change, demonstrates the possibility to facilitate a positive difference by social media. The specific causes listed by Twitter on the front page of Hope140.org create the opportunity for people to make an impact via a social media networking platform. The initiative utilizes hashtags that are popular in modern communication, and gives Twitter users the chance to tweet a pledge to social change with the #betternow hashtag. The website also provides case studies that outline the most effective practices for social change organizations that want to utilize twitter for success. Currently featured is Room to Read, a non-profit organization that enables and promotes education and literacy in nine developing countries. The study urges people to develop a professional non-profit account by using several steps that Room to Read has utilized. Alongside Hope140 as a means for social good efforts, Twitter has utilized cause marketing for their philanthropic strategy. Twitter’s use of Promoted Tweets function in the public service realm with their launch of charities as a whole. Their launch of the Promoted Products platform began with six businesses and two nonprofits called “tweets for good”. In this, Twitter gives away a month’s worth of free promoted tweets for a nonprofit every single month.
Showcasing the effect social media networks can have on society as a whole, Twitter has provided a platform for communication while delving into the campaign to garner more attention for social movements that aspire to transform the world into a better place. Hope140 as a blog has surged the advocacy for causes such as #hope4Japan and persists to feature case studies of nonprofit organizations. With over 140 million tweets sent each day, Twitter’s continued promotion of nonprofits and their worthy social causes has allowed for social change messages to be received by tens of millions of users.
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