Social Media’s Powerful Voice
By Amanda Pecora, Intern
For the past few weeks I have been writing blogs on social media and how it impacts many industries. I stressed how companies can benefit from using platforms like Twitter and Facebook in order to build strong connections with consumers and businesses and to get their message out. I stressed how public relations agencies can benefit by promoting their clients and even promoting themselves and what they do everyday. I was shown once again yesterday how powerful social media can be.
I was browsing my Twitter feed yesterday morning when I kept seeing this trending topic called #STOPKONY. A lot of times I just assume that the trending topics are promotional messages sent by the celebrities I follow, so I ignore them. Something about this trending topic was different. So many people were talking about it, including a lot of my friends so I decided to see what it was all about. I saw there was a video attached to their posts, but once I saw it was thirty minutes long I was hesitant to sit through it. I figured I would be able to get the point of the video within a few minutes, so I sat at my computer screen and explored #STOPKONY.
Thirty minutes passed and I never left my computer. I was so intrigued by this documenter’s powerful message and was surprised of my lack of knowledge about this horrifying issue before watching this video. I started looking into Joseph Kony and where it came from. I learned this was a documentary produced by Jason Russell and the non-profit organization Invisible Children. This video focused on a former child soldier who was forced into the Lord’s Resistance Army run by Joseph Kony. Joseph Kony has built an army full of abducted children where the boys are trained to be killers and the girls are trained to be sex slaves. Joseph Kony has been classified as a terrorist and even compared to Osama Bin Ladin, yet millions of people worldwide have no idea who this man is.
I was amazed to see the amount of responses generated by this Twitter campaign. With the help of celebrities, influential figures and the general public, an international movement was started. Millions of people have not only tweeted and posted this documentary, but have become aware of this horrific story happening in Uganda.
A person’s voice is so powerful and social media enhances that. With the appropriate timing and message, thousands and even millions of people can be reached, which is why I feel that social media is so beneficial for companies. For example, technology companies who are trying to send a message about their new product have the ability to reach people within seconds. Making a video, connecting with relevant followers and visually defining your company are ways you can generate awareness. Creating awareness is key and making sure you are doing so in a creative way that reaches your followers is of most importance. With the power of social media and careful planning, any company trying to relay a message can reach people and you, your products and/or service even stronger.