This morning I published a graphic bemoaning the time we waste on social media to the detriment of productivity. This evening I offer you an example of how social media can be far more productive than any other kind of marketing!
Following my blog post I got into a Twitter conversation with Julia McGill who told me of her Ebay sale. A piece of cardboard the size of an iphone 5. A small, fun idea that quickly turned into a big brilliant idea as a result of a bit of social media interaction. Bidding stands at over £150,000 – for a small piece of cardboard!
Julia is a Film and TV Production Student at University of Westminster and runs their comedy society. Here’s what she told me about her fund-raising idea and how it took off:
“A friend and I are raising money for Dig Deep (http://digdeep.org.uk/) who are a UK registered charity that helps communities in Kenya improve access to clean water, sanitation and renewable energy. We have to raise £2,500 each to fund our sponsored trek along the Great Wall of China.
When coming up with fundraising ideas I put an old empty evian bottle on eBay with a story, and after it sold for £3.20 I thought I would try something similar again. I put up a piece of cardboard (that is shaped a bit like an iPhone 5). A few days went by with no bids and few views and I thought that would be the end of it. I tweeted it to Stephen Fry and didn’t get a response but a few days later he retweeted. After this in about 4 hours the bidding went from £0.01 to its current bid at £158,000.00 (still with over 8 days to go).
I also set up a just giving page for those who would like to donate but don’t feel like splashing out on a piece of cardboard. https://www.justgiving.com/
Well it got a bit complicated as the comments below explain. Ebay took down the sale because Julia had used a brand name but after some negotiation the sale was re written without the brand name and continues to attract bids. Here’s the link: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/RELIST-ORIGINAL-A-piece-of-cardboard-shaped-a-bit-like-a-popular-phone-USED-/160918416983?
So there you have it. One tweet can a whole heap of difference (although obviously it depends on who’s tweeting it!).
Don’t you love a mad idea?! Well done, Julia, we are huge fans of brilliant ideas around here. Anyone else got some Big Brilliant Ideas they want to share?