Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Road to Viralville full of bumps and detours.

As you know, I'm promoting the hell out of, our online Mother's Day campaign for women's heart health starring Olympic figure skated Joannie Rochette.

Everything is in place. Now all we have to do is "go viral". One... two.. three...

Okay, where is everybody? (Just kidding!)

Fast Company says that the three keys to a successful viral idea are "emotion", "public service", and "triggers".

In the case of this video, the emotion (Joannie talking about the loss of her mom), public service (help fight heart disease in women) and trigger (Mother's day) are obvious. Plus, we have the star power of one of Time Magazine's Top 100 people of 2010.

With everything going for it, the campaign is going pretty well on Day 3. The video is on-track to hit the next milestone of 1500 views any minute now, the press is all over the campaign launch, and the campaign just got some surprise coverage from a Swiss blog:

"A beautiful example of an extremely simple social marketing campaign."

There have been setbacks, though, and these are lessons worth sharing too.

For one thing, our English homepage on conked out mid-day yesterday. This meant that people trying to join our cause from couldn't get in. By this morning, we learned that people were still getting in via facebook invitations, so we redirected visitors to the "about" page. (If you haven't already, please join up now!) The home page is back online as of this writing.

Another glitch was the temporary loss of the French video on YouTube, which broke links and set the counter back to zero. It's back now.

As well, because we had to film Joannie on the day of the press conference, the video could not be ready in time for the first wave media blitz.

As a result, we've probably lost some opportunities. But now that we've fixed all our links, we're back on track and I'm busily working on our BR ('blogger relations") strategy — pushing the story out through my own social media outreach, and communicating with other influencers in sport, health and media who might be willing to help. Stay tuned for more results.

At the end of the day, the biggest challenge to this campaign will be to translate the rising awareness into actual donations. If you'd like to help, please join now at or use this handy campaign badge:

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