Trevor McCann

The power of social media for Hurricane Sandy

posted by
Trevor McCann
Chief Executive Officer
Rainbow SEO

With charity events, it all comes down to public awareness. Charity isn’t something that you “sell” but something that you spread to other likeminded individuals. Working in the internet marketing field I primarily work with selling ad space, improving company branding and exposure. However, when I had the unique opportunity to work with a local company on marketing a charity event; it was an enjoyable yet different experience.

The two companies we worked with were A Family Storage, which is a self-storage company, and Cool Box Portable Storage, which is a mobile storage company similar to PODS. Any donations that were dropped off at A Family Storage would then be moved in a Cool Box container up to Hurricane Sandy relief centers.

To market our event online, we decided to use the power of social media to spread awareness of our charity event, specifically Facebook. Facebook gives us a unique approach to targeting different demographics than you would be able to achieve with traditional internet advertising platforms such as Google Adwords or MSN Adcenter. Although we could target different demographics, we still paid the traditional per click basis that Adwords or Adcenter uses.

After deciding to use social media, we set up a campaign with a relatively small budget to test what kind of interaction we would receive from our ad. We first set up our campaign to geo-target our location which was specifically Tucson, based on the companies’ location. Next, thanks to Facebook’s unique platform, we were able to target who our ads were shown to contingent upon pages that users had “liked” or listed as interests. We chose to target users who had liked “Charity”, “Charity Events”, “Non-Profit”, “Hurricane Sandy Relief” and many similar variations. This helped to refine who our ads were sent out to and prevent unnecessary ad spending.