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Posts Tagged ‘Communication Strategies’

I want to discuss the ‘peak oil‘ video, referred to by Kyle in his comment yesterday. ‘Cassandra Peak Oil’ was released in December 2007 and was viewed 19,814 times. Not bad for ‘peak oil’ . . .

Kyle thinks this is a great example of the smart use of sex to sell green stuff. Is it? While there is no denying that the sex part gets people’s attention, I had my doubts. After all, what is the relevance of sex to peak oil? I put Prad to the test and asked him.

Is she trying to distract me?’ was his first reaction. His overall assessment: ‘Most guys who watch it are hoping she will take it all off, so they keep on watching. It was effective. Guys especially would not turn it off. But it’s a bit gimmicky, and too sensationalist.’

I did a quick analysis of the comments on YouTube. Reactions to the video, were mostly positive, two to one versus negative comments. Most people felt Cassandra did an excellent at calling people’s attention, and that she was a ‘smart, hot chick‘. As one commenter put it, ‘SEVEN DEADLY SINS, right on!’ Now ex-governor Spitzer should know . . .

Green Porno‘ with Isabella Rossellini, then ‘Cassandra Peak Oil‘, what’s next?

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Who said environmental activism has to be serious? I just got this mail from Ryan Watkins-Hughes:

I just stumbled across your idea for Greendropping. Very clever. Below is information about an upcoming shopdropping project I’m doing. Please feel free to pass along to people you think would be interested. Thanks.

RWH
http://www.shopdropping.net
http://www.watkinshughes.com

———————————-
SHOPDROPPING.NET is now calling on artists, designers, media makers, and creative folks to purchase greeting cards and alter them in any way they see fit. Any form of commercial card, from wedding to graduation to birthday to bereavement, is eligible. But clever and witty will be given preference over easy and distasteful.

Please submit JPEG reproductions of the altered greeting cards to submissions@shopdropping.net with GREETINGS as the subject line.

All files must be sized to 1024 x 768 at 72 dpi. Each altered card must include the text “www.shopdropping.net” somewhere in the new design. It can be discreet, on the back of the card, and unobtrusive but it must be present.When submitting the cover and inside of the same card please indicate this clearly in the file titles (for example “cover.jpg”, “page2.jpg”).

The deadline for submissions is April 1st 2008.

Once all of the digital reproductions have been submitted, selected artists will be given the address of a fellow participant to swap cards with. The cards will then be shopdropped back into circulation and the digital reproductions will be featured on SHOPDROPPING.NET. Please do not submit digital files if you do not intend to follow through with the act of shopdropping a fellow participant’s work. The digital reproductions are a means to select and document the artworks, but do not replace the act of shopdropping the originals into unsuspecting stores.

I am on my way to the stationary store . . . Will you join me? Of course my card is going to have some green subversive message embedded into it. I urge you to do the same.

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delicious.jpgI listened to Tina‘s suggestion and started a ‘greendrop‘ tag on del.icio.us. This way we will be able to track all the ‘green drops’ in the blogosphere. Here is how it works:

  1. If you do not have an account yet on del.icio.us, just go to the site and open one. It’s free.
  2. The del.icio.us and tag icons will automatically appear in your toolbar.
  3. Whenever you go on a site and comment on a post with a ‘greendrop‘, just click on the ‘tag‘ icon and type ‘greendrop‘ in the tag window.

That’s all! If a sufficient number of us go crazy with greendropping, ‘greendrop’ may even surface in the del.icio.us tag cloud. . .

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First day of greendropping in all the mommy sites. ok, there was also one dad site. I was surprised how easy it was to relate to the different posts. It helped that I was amongst my peers, and I could totally empathize, regardless of the content. A mom is a mom, is a mom.

Here are some of the comments I made, with a bit of context:

greendrop21.jpg on emomsathome‘s post on ‘Monday motivation, mom gets it done‘, about fitting in a day’s work:

Your post raises the question of, what does being efficient means as a mom?

There are many ways to evaluate, from how much work you are able to accomplish, to how much happiness you are able to create for your family. Both are important.

My own bias as a mom and green blogger is to emphasize the need for moms to come to terms with the biggest challenge facing our children’s not so distant future. I am referring to global warming. No, I am not paranoid, just realistic.

The good news is there is a lot we can do to make a difference. Most important is to set the example and inspire our kids to become responsible green citizens. By driving less, and walking and biking more for instance.

greendrop21.jpg on Parenthacks‘s post on ‘Reduce mess by putting ketchup under the hot dog’:

Love your link for recycling old mustard and ketchup bottles!

I wish you had a category for green hacking. I see global warming as the main threat to our children’s future. The more I read about it, the scarier and more urgent the problem seems to become.

Here is my green hack for the day: walk and bike with your kids, whenever possible. It’s good for them, for you, and the planet. Plus, it will save you gas money.

greendrop21.jpg on 5 minutes for mom‘s post on ‘Project Runway Winner’:

I too am a huge Project Runway fan. And I won’t tell who won . . .

As a mom and green blogger, I just wish green things got as much attention as Project Runway. Not as exciting, but so critical for the future or our children. Not a day goes by without more news about the urgency of taking action. The health and future of our children is at risk. As moms, there is so much we can do to. First, by setting the example and greening our lives as much as possible. Walking, biking, using public transportation instead of driving. Just as an example.

We are stewards of the Earth.

greendrop21.jpg on Scribbit‘s post on ‘Sprouting Egg Heads’, featuring creative way to turn Easter Eggs into miniature gardening pots for herbs:

Love the idea. Nothing wasted, plus you are teaching the kids about gardening, healthy eating, and also indirectly about green living.

As a mom, and green blogger, I feel we have so much responsibility towards our children, to prepare them for the environmental challenges ahead.

Thank you!

greendrop21.jpg on bitch PhD‘s post on ‘Consumer Sunday’, about her urges to buy a car and get a new appartment in Chicago:

Boy, can I relate to you! I lived in Chicago for ten years while my daughters were little, and I do remember those times of standing on the L Platform, freezing winds piercing through my never warm enough clothes. I did not own a car either and often wished I did.

This being said, times have changed and with the planet heating up faster by the day, I could never get myself to buy a car if I lived again in a big city like Chicago. My green conscience won’t let me. Months of blogging away about all that global warming shit have killed all my consuming urges. Actually, I have nearly stopped driving my car.

I am glad you are mentioning the environment. As moms, there is so much we can do to help prepare our children for the environmental challenges ahead. What scares me most is how close we are to hitting the wall. We do have the power though to set the example, and make choices for our family that will make a difference.

If you get a car, at least, try to get one of those fuel efficient ones, and limit your outings to those days when it is minus thirty with windshield . . .

greendrop21.jpg on Fussy‘s post on ‘Six Things I am All About This Week‘, about trivial things she liked:

Loved the Pepsi Commercial, and the Band-Aid touch . . .

May I add a #7?

How about something green, like taking a long walk with family for some CO2 free action?

Sorry, but I am a green mommy blogger, and I can’t help but drop green stuff whenever I can.

greendrop21.jpg on Design Moms post on ‘Baileys‘, a supplier of household items:

Wow! I loved the Eco-Household stuff. It reminded me of my grandmother’s farm back in France.

Lately though, I am on a no buy kick, and find great joy in making do with whatever I already have around the house. As a ‘born again green mom’ I find it incredibly satisfying to create aesthetically pleasing solutions out of ‘nothing’.

Small drops . . . Day after day, from me, from some of you. Let’s see what happens.

PS- I made up a greendrop21.jpg icon for the project. Please feel free to use it on your site, or anytime you greendrop.

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Continuing our thread of conversations on climate fight messaging, I would like to spend some time discussing possible targeting strategies. While it is true that global warming is a problem that concerns us all, in the interest of efficiency, it makes senses to go after those groups of people who are most likely to be persuaded positively. If we were to use a traditional ‘shades of green‘ segmentation model, the obvious choice would be to go after people who are on the fence, not the minority of green enthusiasts – people like you and me -, not the uninterested, but the people who see global warming as an issue, and who need to be pushed into action. While being the correct target, it leaves us with not enough to go by in terms of executing a campaign.

A more interesting strategy, in my opinion, uses a combination of psychographic and demographic descriptors to identify high potential targets. I got the idea of considering demographic segments, from Mary Hunt. Mary has chosen to focus her efforts on women, the ones in the household who are responsible for 80% of the buying. Makes sense doesn’t it, when like Mary, you are trying to educate the public about sustainable standards for high ticket, high environmental impact items such as flooring and furniture? Of equal importance is the need to communicate with people on an emotional level. The global warming message has made it into people’s heads, but has failed to grab them by the heart. Appeals to morality and civic environmental duty can only go so far. People have to feel moved into action.

Environmentalists have to stop talking to themselves, and need to go out to segments of the population outside of the green landscape, groups of people who because of their natural interests or life situations, are most likely to emotionally connect emotionally with the climate fight. Based on months of exploration and conversations with readers, these are the clusters that seem to make the most sense:

  1. Mothers are programmed to take care of their young ones. Any threat to their children’s health and survival triggers powerful responses. ‘You mean my children may not be able to enjoy clean air, and the good life we have taken for granted so far?’
  2. Believers‘s morality is tied into their faith. If they perceive global warming as the result of man’s sinful handling of God’s creation, it becomes their responsibility to redeem themselves through restorative actions. ‘God has given us this Earth; it is for us to protect.’
  3. Business leaders care about the bottom line, a lot. Once they realize the path to sustainability is also good for their bottom line, they can become some of the fiercest warriors of the climate fight. ‘Green is good.’
  4. Nature enthusiasts have a deep connection with nature. Birders cringe when they read about land-bird species at the risk of becoming extinct, as a result of global warming. ‘Do you know how beautiful birds are? We can’t let this happen.’
  5. The overweight crowd are putting their lives on the line every day with their unhealthy lifestyles. They are getting the message to: eat less, and less processed foods and less meat, drive less, watch less TV, walk or bike more. ‘If not for the planet, maybe for themselves?’

So many ways to slice the pie . . . Which of these people would you be most willing to bet on?

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On February 16th, hundreds of people gathered at Trafalgar Square, all volunteers recruited for a covert performance. At exactly 3.30 pm, on a secret cue, they all froze and held their positions for 5 minutes:

Now imagine, if the same performance took place simultaneously in strategic places all over the world, and at the end of the five minutes, all performers delivered a message about the climate fight?

Maybe the message is a request for all spectators to do one simple thing. Like walking the next time they have to travel a short distance. The real beauty of such performances is what happens next on YouTube.

During the ten days since it was first downloaded, ‘The Day London Froze‘ video has been viewed 559,ooo times, favorited 3,715 times, and commented on 2,588 times.

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Back in May last year, a conversation on NPR, between Robert Siegel and E.O. Wilson got me excited about Wilson’s upcoming Encyclopedia of Life project. Of course, I was amongst the flurry of folks who tried to get on Tuesday, the day the Encyclopedia went online. Here is the rest of the story:

The concept of a comprehensive encyclopedia of life on the Internet proved too popular. Its computers were overwhelmed and couldn’t keep it alive when it debuted Tuesday.

The encyclopedia, which eventually will have more than 1 million pages devoted to different species of life on Earth, quickly crashed on its first day of a public unveiling, organizers said.

Scientists at the Encyclopedia of Life sought help from experts at Wikipedia for keeping their fledgling Web site going despite massive – and anticipated – interest. The site went back up Tuesday afternoon, but with expectations of more problems, although only temporary ones.

“We’ve been overwhelmed by traffic,” encyclopedia founding chairman Jesse Ausubel said. “We’re thrilled.”

The encyclopedia’s Web site logged 11.5 million hits over 5 1/2 hours, including two hours of down time, according to organizers.

Tuesday’s unveiling included limited Web pages for 30,000 species. There are also “exemplar pages” that go into more depth with photos, video, scientific references, maps and text of 25 species ranging from the common potato to the majestic peregrine falcon to a relatively newly discovered obscure marine single celled organism called Cafeteria roenbergensis. Eventually, planners hope to have all 1.8 million species on the Web and already have set up 1 million placeholder pages.

The most popular of the species for Web searches is the poisonous death cap mushroom, which may say something about people’s homicidal intentions, joked Ausubel.

All the pages have been made by scientists, but in a few months the encyclopedia will start taking submissions from the public, like Wikipedia.

Maybe one of the ways to people’s hearts in respect to the climate fight, is through the life sciences? After all, one of the most viewed videos on YouTube is the ‘Kruger‘ video:

Animals also come up second in Yahoo 2007 Top 10 Kids Searches.

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