Here are some assorted bits and pieces I've collected for your reading pleasure:
- Starting next week I'll be offering a new webinar series on Social Media for Social Marketers. The four 60-minute webinars (at 11 am Pacific time) are:
- October 22 - Designing a Social Media Strategy for Change
- October 29 - Blogging and Beyond: Tools to Build Your Movement
- November 12 - Twitteracy for Social Marketers
- November 19 - Monitoring and Evaluating Social Media
If you are interested, but can't make a particular event live, you can always view the archived events and ask me any questions afterward. For more information about the webinars and to register, see the Social Marketing University Online page.
- Recently, more attention is being paid to applying design thinking to social marketing; in other words, how can we design the environment or product to make the desired behavior the most natural and easy choice? The best resource I have found in thinking through how to apply a design approach to behavior change is Dan Lockton's Design with Intent Toolkit. With lots of examples and different angles to consider, it's a great introduction to the discipline. I found it so helpful, in fact, that I created a companion worksheet to go along with it: the Design Approach for Behavior Change Worksheet.
- If you haven't seen Franke James' visual essay about an event that brought Malcolm Gladwell and Mark Kingwell together to discuss social change, you'll find it a treat for your eyes as well as your brain.
- The UK's Ingenious Group is sponsoring the first-ever Global Social Marketing Awards. For-profit and nonprofit organizations can enter in categories like Best Global Social Marketing Campaign, Most Effective Strategic Partnership, Most Effective Use of Budget, and more. Finalists will be announced soon, with winners receiving awards in December. This is a great idea, but with the entry fees at £175 (~$280) per category entry, it's a bit too pricey for any organization but a for-profit agency to enter, greatly limiting the candidates to choose from. I'd love to see awards like these done with no barriers to entry, with campaigns nominated and voted on by their social marketing peers. Perhaps it's an idea for the Global Social Marketing Association to consider once it gets up and running.
- A couple of weeks ago, the "Save the Boobs" campaign from ReThink Breast Cancer got people buzzing about whether it was okay to use sex to get men interested in the issue of breast cancer (my answer was yes, but this ad was so poorly done from a behavior change point of view that it would be fairly ineffective). Soon after it came out, a group called HCD Research conducted a MediaCurves study to quantitatively measure the responses of men and women to this ad. Not surprisingly, men and women had very different reactions in whether they thought it was appropriate and in the emotions it evoked. The data confirms what seems obvious, though the lack of any clear objective or call to action means the high self-reported "effectiveness" score is fairly meaningless.
- What do you get when you cross Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog with a 1970s Chuck Norris movie and a "Got Milk?" ad? Something like the Battle for Milkquarious - a 20-minute web-only "rock opera" created by the California Milk Processor Board that showcases the power of milk in an entertaining way. While some question whether this type of branded entertainment gets its point across adequately, I think it's a great (but cheesy) example for how social marketers could adapt this format for various issues. A more serious example is the In the Moment web series, created by the City of West Hollywood and the LA Gay and Lesbian Center, which plays like a gay version of Melrose Place and incorporates HIV prevention information into the entertainment-first format.
If you're interested in learning more about this approach, check out Johns Hopkins School of Public Health's free OpenCourseware resources on Entertainment Education for Behavior Change.
- And finally, a huge congratulations to fellow social marketing blogger Alex Rampy (SocialButterfly), who just got married to the man of her dreams. May they have a lifetime of happiness together!