The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has become an Internet phenomenon over the past week, with ‘nominations’ ranging from your partners’ mum in her back garden, to Eminem and Rihanna on stage in front of tens of thousands of fans. What, though, has made the fundraiser so popular and what can we learn from it?
There’s no such thing as an original campaign
Can you honestly name one thing that you know is 100% organic? Neither can we. The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge wasn’t originally started specifically for the ALSA. You tip a bucket of ice (and water) over your head or you donate to a charity of your choice. It just so happened that one participant’s video went viral and the Ice Bucket Challenge morphed into a fundraiser for the American charity. The moral of this story is that you do not need an original idea to create interest and excitement.
Keep it simple
How do we take part in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge? We put some water in a bucket and throw it over our heads. By that same token, keep your participation barrier low. For effective marketing as many people need to be able to join in as possible.
Once you’ve done the deed, you are free to nominate whomever you wish to subject themselves to sub zero temperatures for 3 seconds or so, and you do so on a social networking platform so popular that friends of friends of friends know they have been nominated. The power of Facebook combined with a video from you straight to the public means the social shaming element is a strong factor.
Call to action
Any successful marketer and their dog knows that a call to action is important, but if we’re taking into account the ALS Ice bucket Challenge, it needs to be as specific as possible. It’s more likely to urge others to participate.
Short and entertaining
The ALS Ice Bucket challenge videos we see every day have barely any mention of Motor Neuron Disease at all. Instead we just watch loved ones in uncomfortable conditions for a second or two, then laugh at the next person being handed the proverbial torch. Your message needs to be fun and relatable.
Money isn’t everything
The deal is that you throw the bucket of ice over your head or you donate, so there’s no added pressure for those who simply don’t have the means to donate to still participate in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. Use this to your advantage though; many people are doing both activities, so if you ensure people believe your campaign is worthy, they’ll probably do the same.