Thursday, June 23, 2011

Thanks to Those Who Have Helped Me #TweetItForward!

The results of my last blog post are in! For those of you who haven't read it, I'll give you the Cliff's Notes: Likeable U and the 140 Character Conference helped me to put things into perspective. As someone who works on Facebook and Twitter all day, every day, I often get so bogged down in the logistics (optimizing Facebook ads, executing contests, growing a following, etc.) that I often lose sight of the big picture. Looking back at our history, media... not even just media... our entire world has changed tremendously. "Change happens because it is our fundamental human wish to make our lives matter: we want the things that we do to have meaning and value." So, this social media thing is great, but where is the value? How can we use this new medium to do something meaningful?

This is where Cary Chessick, CEO of comes in. At Likeable U, Cary introduced the #TweetItForward initiative. We've all suffered from hardships, no matter where we are in our lives and careers. It is important for us to never lose sight of the people who have helped us become the people we are today. In recognition of those who have influenced us, Cary encouraged us to tweet using the hashtag #TweetItForward, giving us the opportunity to give our thanks to the individuals and organizations that have inspired some sort of change in either our personal lives or society as a whole. To jump start this initiative, Cary gave $500 cash to 40 random attendees (and lucky me, I was one of them!). We were told we could do whatever we would like with the money. I wanted to give my readers the opportunity to use social media to impact our world. I asked my readers to #TweetItForward and let me know which individuals or organizations deserve a $100 donation. I would then choose one organization to which I would donate. As a thank you for helping me use social media in a meaningful way, I would give $50 to the person who made the suggestion. Here are the great suggestions I received:

Diabetes Research and Wellness Foundation - Suggested by @Caraizzle: The Diabetes Research and Wellness Foundation® was founded to help and find the cure for diabetes and until that goal is achieved, to provide the care needed to combat the detrimental and life-threatening complications of this terrible disease. Cara also told me a personal story, explaining why this organization meant so much to her.

#TeamMeg and Valerie Simon - Suggested by @KratzPR: Valerie shared a personal story about her college roommate, Meg, who has recently been diagnosed with cancer. Donations would help offset medical costs.

Drea's Dream - Suggested by @Sdiiane: Their goal is to foster a young woman's dream of helping children with cancer and special needs through the power of dance.

Make A Wish Foundation - Suggested by @d_zok: They grant the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. Wish children of the past, present and future will have an opportunity to share with the power of a wish.

I was going to choose one of these organizations based on which meant the most to me. Reading through these organizations, I couldn't possibly choose just one. So, I let decide: $100 goes to the Make A Wish Foundation and $50 goes to Debbe (@d_zok) for helping me make a meaningful donation! Although I am currently only able to donate $100 to one organization, I will donate $25 to each of the other suggestions.

Now, for a #TweetItForward bonus!
  • $25 to @Caraizzle: Thanks for introducing me to Likeable (known at that time as theKbuzz) and being there through each step of our growth within the company. I can only imagine what I'd be doing right now if we had never met... #TweetItForward
  • $25 to @Mandy55: Thanks for teaching me what this social media stuff is all about. #TweetItForward
  • $25 to @FrankRamblings: Thanks for being dedicated, putting in the extra hours, and helping me regain my sanity. #TweetItForward
Who do YOU think deserves a #TweetItForward? How will you use social media in a meaningful way? Leave a comment below!