A Guest Post By Harrison Kratz
Regardless of what walk of life you are from or what your career is, the holiday season brings up the same topics of conversation… Gift shopping, how early is too early for Christmas music, and what you are doing to give back this year. In PR, Marketing, and Social Media, that last part has slightly evolved in recent years as giving back is now synonymous with the term social good.
Social good is definitely a sexy term for philanthropy and has really opened up consumers and brands’ minds about how they can utilize technology and social media to inflict positive change in the world.
I am happy to be apart of this movement of social good, having founded Tweet Drive – a campaign where I’ve been lucky enough to build a great community of those who are dedicated to giving underprivileged children around the world the holiday they deserve.
As happy as I am to see many similar campaigns being put together by people and brands throughout the year, I still think we have a long way to go. Social good is a noble practice, but to me its not just something those in social media can try out, it should be seen as a social responsibility.
So many of us have been able to reap the benefits of social media, smartphones, iPads, etc. while others around the world continue to suffer – even in the United States. Before these tools were available, it was very difficult for us to create positive change and directly help those in need in the furthest corners of the world. Donations could only go so far.
Since the disaster in Haiti in January, 2010 we have seen the power that social media users can have on giving back and helping those in need. It extends our reach to help those we didn’t have access to previously, as well as allowing us to build global communities around these efforts and causes. In short – that is power.
And as we all learned from Spiderman, “With great power, comes great responsibility.”
These tools are a privilege and we all have to understand that using these powers for good shouldn’t be an option, but a responsibility. I started small with a toy drive in my hometown back in 2009 before I fully understood social media and its advantages. In 2010, I realized that I could do so much more, so I did. Now, the Tweet Drive will be present in over 50 cities around the world and should expect over 4,000 collected toys by years end.
Do I have a blast putting this together? Yes. Is it stressful sometimes? Absolutely. But none of that matters in the end because this is a responsibility that I have. Social media has opened up a world of opportunities for me, and I can’t forget that.
So whether you advocate for Twestival, Movember, the USA for UNHCR’s Blue Key Campaign, or #TeamMeg – I hope you join me in transforming social good into a social responsibility.
Oh, and Happy Holidays J
Harrison Kratz is the Founder of the global social good initiative, Tweet Drive and the Community Manager at MBA@UNC, the new Online MBA program at the University of North Carolina Feel free to connect with him on Twitter, @KratzPR!