Monday, March 2, 2009

Be Part of “The Perfect Storm of Social Technologies”

This post is about attempting to leverage Social Technology products such as Digg, Facebook and Twitter to reach a large audience and, in the process, promote a great cause, which is incentivizing people to register as organ donors.

We tell a bit of the story of the campaign, the results so far (in terms of reach and effectiveness) and then explain a plan, where you, reader, are going to be an integral part of making this Perfect Storm of Social Technologies!

The “Viral” campaign video that we want to promote

The context (skip if you are impatient, have been following the campaign closely or just don’t care)

As students of the class “The Power of Social Technology” at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, we decided to take on the challenge of increasing awareness of the general public around the topic of organ donations and try to get people to sign up as organ donors.

In very plain terms, we wanted to make the message spread as much as possible and get the word out to as many people as possible.

We chose a funny and light take on the subject and came up with the campaign name: Donors Are Sexy. We thought this would catch people’s attention and inspire them to sign up by highlighting that people will think more highly of them if they are organ donors.

To spread the message we envisioned creating funny videos and using an array of Social Technology tools. We created a Blog, a Facebook group, a Twitter account, a Digg account and a YouTube account, to name a few. (ok, most)

We got many views on YouTube (~30 thousand) and they followed a weird pattern, starting slowly and then peaking for a short period and going down to a relatively stable number. Now actually it seems as there are hardly any views.

We also noticed that, for this video, around 50% of the views were generated on YouTube searches many of which were just people searching for pick up lines and not related to organ donation at all. When people clicked on the movie, however, we did a good job at keeping them engaged, only losing our viewership at the point in which our Hero is left behind by the lovely lady.

All of these statistics are provided by YouTube’s “Insights” which are available for free for those who post videos. Some of these statistics are only compiled after you get a certain number of views.

The Perfect Storm: This is where you come in

We want to do a final push to promote our campaign video and spread the gospel of “Donors Are Sexy” in a truly viral way. We want to use all the tools we learned about to re-create the Buzz around the video.

To do that, we need at least 200 of you to Digg this article so that it can be featured in Digg’s main page. Then, we will reach out to some power Tweeter-ers and ask for their support in promoting our cause and reaching out to even more people. If enough people see the video, it can become a Featured Video on YouTube and generate even more views, spreading the message of the campaign to an unimaginable number of people.

If you have never used Digg, it is a very cool site, definitely worth signing up for (I know I am biased because I want you to Digg this article, but it’s a cool site). The coolest thing for me is that they are coming up with a recommendation engine that will be able to suggest articles based on your tastes (from the things you Dugg).

So, what you have to do is click on the “Digg This” button, sign up (and make sure it registered your Digg). That’s simple right? Want to do more to help? Tell your friends to Digg This.

The results and WIIFY (What’s In It For You)

So what’s in it for you? On top of helping promote a great cause, you will have detailed access to the information on the performance of this Social Media campaign and its analysis. Ok, you will get that just from visiting the site afterwards, but you are going to feel silly for not being a part of this Perfect Storm of Social Technology!

This campaign will go on until the 8th of March, a Sunday and results will be posted shortly afterwards.

Thank you, we Digg you!

Donors Are Sexy! Team

Sunday, February 1, 2009

First "real" campaign video

Do you wanna know what picking up beautiful women has to do with organ donations?
Check out our new campaign video at

Tell us what you think!

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Fact-tuning the message

The more we talk to experts from the field (transplant surgeons, medical staff, patients, etc.) the more we learn about the process. Most importantly, we realize now that it is not alone sufficient to register as an organ donor. In the situation of an accident, one's family will always be consulted and still remains the right to refuse organ donations. Hence, it is crucial that organ donors talk to their families and explain their choice to them so their loved ones will know what decision to make. We will integrate this insight into the campaign message.

Furthermore we have learned how donor and conversion rates differ among different cultural backgrounds. A strong predictor of a low organ donor penetration in a community is its share of 1st generation immigrants. That is why donor rates are especially low for Chinese and other Asian groups. However, other minorities like African-Americans and Latinos also have a comparably low donor rate. Since organ matches are usually found within one's ethnicity, this poses a major problems for the members of these minorities. Hence, we will make it a focuspoint of the campaign to address the most critical minorities in a targeted manner.

This weekend, our first "real" campaign video will go online. Other than that, we continue to work on all fronts, learn a lot and finetune our approach.

See you soon and thank you for the overwhelming support!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Welcome to Donors are sexy!

We are two students who are deeply concerned about the low organ donor rate in the US. A low organ donor rate means long waitlists for evrybody who waits for an organ (currently more than 100.000 people across the country) and therefore a lot of suffering and death that could have been prevented easily.

To raise awareness for this subject and to motivate more poeple to become organ donors we want to start a viral social media campaign. We are planning to produce various youtube videos and will use social networks, blogs and other tools to spread the word.

Currently, we are working on our message. We don't want to work with guilt or shame but we want to emphasize the positive aspect: How good it feels to be an organ donor and that organ donors are better people. Hence, we are working on a couple of ideas to show in a funny way that organ donors are sexy, smart, saavy and sweet.

We will keep you updated about every step in our campaign and we invite you to take part in it in every form that you want. You can tell your friends about it, produce your own video or just tell a story in your or our blog.

We are looking forward to hearing from you and don't forget to sign up as a donor on!

Alexander & Diego