Sunday, March 25, 2012

Kony PR lessons

If you haven't seen the viral video KONY 2012 yet, you can watch it here at The large response to the awareness campaign video urging for the arrest of Joseph Kony-- witnessed not only by 55 million views of Twitter, but also by becoming a trending topic on Twitter and Google -- inevitably received criticisms.

The video, made by the nonprofit organization Invisible Children and directed by Jason Russell, co-founder of the organization, inspires a social media campaign to make Kony famous because as explained, when people know, they react and spread information. Thus, contributing to their ultimate goal to arrest Kony in order for him to receive justice.

In responding to the criticisms by the people, Invisible Children offers lessons not only for social media campaigns, but also for crisis communciations within nonprofit PR.

  1. Communicate immediately: the longer an organization waits, the more they are perceived to be hiding. The founders of Invisible Children were talking to the media not long after the video went viral.
  2. Address specific concerns: The Invisible Children website, after crashing temporarily due to unprecedented high traffic, listed responses to several critiques without holding back any information.
  3. Include social media in your response: The organization hit Twitter and Facebook to respond to people's concerns, sometimes directly answering critics.
  4. Have others speak for you: In a time when credibility of an organization is weakened, those with credible reputations outside should speak for the organization.
  5. Ask for public input: Invisible Children is asking several others -- policymakers, nonprofits, victims of the LRA, and the general public -- to aid them in communicating their work and especially their goal to stop Kony in 2012.
To read the complete article on Ragan's PR Daily, click here. To find out more about KONY 2012, watch the video and learn how to contribute, click here.

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