#BeatCancer: The Power of New Media

You may have noticed this hashtag a lot over the weekend. It was the highest trending topic on Twitter. And that’s because a group of very clever people demonstrated the power of social media for social good.

The goal was to set a Guinness World Book record for the largest social mass media message distributed in a 24-hour period. And the goal was achieved!

The masterminds behind this mission were Tamara Knechtel from Everywhere, an Atlanta based social media company and CNN anchor Don Lemon. They came up with the idea over a casual conversation.

Don Lemon launched the concept at the Blog World/New Media Expo in Las Vegas on Friday. Attendees of the conference and people all over the Internet were asked to send Tweets, issue Facebook status updates and blog using #BeatCancer in their posts. And that’s exactly what they did.

EBay, PayPal and Miller Lite were major sponsors of the initiative and agreed to donate 1 cent for every Tweet, blog post or Facebook update during the 24-hour period. All money raised will be donated to non-profit cancer organizations. The social web jumped on board and over 208,000 mentions happened in a 24 hour period.

This is an amazing example of the power of social media. The ability to pull thousands of people together across the world with a single focus is inspiring.

There are many examples of that use the notion of 4 C’s of social media. #beatcancer demonstrates how social media can be used to :

  • Connect. Every person involved felt an instant connection to one another and to the cause.
  • Community. People not only at BlogWorld but literally all over the world instantly jumped on board to support.
  • Conversation. The dialog extended beyond the new media realm into the traditional media sphere. With CNN featuring the event.
  • Care. People engaged and cared about the outcome of this new media experiment and the positive impact it will have for those impacted by cancer.

The new media tools we all have access to can be used to make a difference. #beatcancer is a Guinness World Book record holding example of how new media has given us all an expaned playing field to use. Let’s not waste it.

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