Good afternoon. Thank you for inviting me here to share some of our work.
The ocean is our client.Upwell is a social media PR agency, forging new models in a pilot phase that concludes in March.It’s a big idea, one that really resonated with me in initial conversations with Vikki Spruill. The ocean faces complex issues that need big new ideas to break through. This idea is huge.
Upwell is charged with conditioning the climate for changeLay a foundation so ocean orgs can go faster.To do that, we’ve had to invent a kind of meteorology of issue conversations online. With big data tools available, we can actually peer into the swirling currents of online conversation by monitoring social mentions, or posted social items like Tweets, blog posts and facebook shares. This data is out there, and having it as context levels you up above competitive campaigning to a bigger issue-wide perspective. Peers start to look a lot more like really awesome help for overfishing gaining more attention.
Why does the ocean need an organization like Upwell. My colleagues are well aware of the crisis the ocean faces, but we have major work to do with the American public.Why else?Because the corporate world is full of rooms social media war room. They use the same monitoring tool, Radian6, that we do.Nestle uses this war room to monitor their brand. We use our war room to monitor the brand of the ocean.We believe we can create brand ambassadors for the ocean. We’re stealing their model, and evolving it to be more durable. The ocean is our client, and we’re watching out for our clients online brand. (Source: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB20001424052748704414504575243921712969144.html#) Photo credit : http://uk.mobile.reuters.com/article/idUKBRE89P07Q20121026?irpc=932Photo credit : http://uk.mobile.reuters.com/article/idUKBRE89P07Q20121026?irpc=932
We work in a dynamic and rapidly evolving environment. And we finally can KNOW the shape of it. This is what 2012 has looked like so far. Each line represents the social mention volume in one of our issue keyword sets.We suspected that the ocean conversation was pretty big, and that jagged blue line often hangs out at 140000 unique social mentions a day. That pair of pink lines is sharks and cetaceans. Shark week makes big spikes, but cetaceans get more social mentions a day. Hanging out on the bottom of the graph are tuna, overfishing, the Gulf of mexico, ocean acidification, sustainable seafood and tiny tiny MPAs. The relative scale of these conversations is really different.
We made the strategic choice to run campaigns online in this pilot phase. Most organizations rely on polling to assess their impact on public understanding and action. We use social media tools to amplify the ocean conversation. Why go straight to the online action? Because it works. For example: A recent study conducted by the Pew Research Center found that: 60% of American adults use social networking sites. 66% of those social media users use social media for civic or political activities. 38% of those who use social networking sites use social media to “like” or promote material related to politics or social issues that others have postedFocusing on social media allows us to draw of the power of personal credibility, the aggregate audience of thousands of personal networks. Distributed networks are strong, resilient, and build sector-wide capacity.And the American public aren’t the only ones migrating their political and social issue conversations online. More than half of Journalists source stories from social media, and 28% use it to source from previously unknown sources. More on our success here in the case studies.Sourcehttp://pewinternet.org/Reports/2012/Political-engagement/Summary-of-Findings.aspx
This is a graph of Upwell Campaign and Social Mention Spikes for Overfishing and Sustainable Seafood Conversations Aug 10-Nov 12, 2012. All of those radio dots are successful campaign moments since August this year, bumping well above the orange baseline metrics we’ve calculated. This is essentially a detail graph of the black graph I shared three slides ago.
As Sandy approached the coast, the New York Times ran Paul Greenberg’s op ed. He was wishing for the historic oyster beds, that may have prevented storm surge from the disaster on the way. It was a compelling piece, but it’s no longer enough to have a smart, sophisticated op ed in the NYT. It started to gather some speed, but we thought we could give it legs.
We riffed on an iconic image,Making Paul’s complex weaving of history and science, policy and personal more accessible. This I oyster NY image is more highly social content, more for the person on the street. Ultimately, we think this highly sharable content is what we’re trying to create. We know that it was shared further with the CTO of New York City, with the op ed editor at the New York Times. Paul wants a tshirt too.
Who is on your big team? How can you listen big to the conversation you care about?
Upwell at democracy fund meeting march 2013
Big Listening:Ocean ConversationsRachel Weidinger@racheannyesMarch 4, 2013