The other day I took the time to sign up for support of the Prince of Wales’ Rainforest Project after seeing the star studded sign-up campaign video starring, among others, Harrison ford, Pele and the Dalai Lama, who introduces himself as “a simple Bhuddist monk.”
According to Charles’ webcast above, the aim of the digital campaign is “to build an online community to call, from the bottom up, for urgent action to protect the rainforests by the time the worlds leaders gather in copenhagen for crucially important international climate discussions…”
The thing is, after signing up I found myself at a loss as to what to do after reading the info and watching the videos. I love the concept of creating an online community of advocates, but there’s no social element encorporated into the site.
Where, Charles, is this online community you hope to create?
When signing up there’s the option of forwarding the message to your email contacts which, for me, was useless as I don’t use email as my primary means of communication with my peers. Effectively, they are trying to create an online word-of-mouth campaign without utilising social media.
There’s a widget which you can grab, that will tell you how many people have signed up because of your influence, and the opportunity to create a mash-up video of your own with the frog (although this part of the site is not yet live). Yet they seem to miss out the most fundamental element of an online community: discussion.
Where can I go to talk to other people about the issue? How can I talk with people from the organisation? Where’s the link to the facebook group and the twitter feed, or the blog?
Clearly a lot of time and effort has been spent creating strategic partnerships and celebrity endorsements, and they’ve made a good decision reaching out to the online community, but don’t seem to have quite grasped the mechanics of it all.