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Ice Bucket Challenge


The ice bucket challenge is all the rage these days with more and more people taking part in it each and everyday.  It works like this, a person dumps a bucket of ice water over their head, records it on video, uploads it to facebook and nominates 3 other people to participate in the challenge within 24 hours or donate $100 to the ALS charity. This is the kind of thing that you either love or hate. Most people got involved and did everything to the letter while others sat back and said why all the theatrics just donate the money. The guys over at the vape shop in Brooklyn did this and it got us thinking so did a small fundraiser hosted by lawn & garden and the turnout was huge. Most folks prefer to donate without all the theatrics.

Well the truth is the theatrics is what brings awareness to the disease and the idea that you should donate to the cause. It is estimated that only 1 in 10 will actually donate the money whether or not they participate in the challenge or not. Yet those numbers are nothing to snub our noses too. It is reported that the ALS has received almost 8 million dollars this year in donations since the challenge began, It was only 1.7 million for the same time last year. Love it or hate it you can’t argue the fact that it is working.

True it might seem like a cry for attention when your buddies are seen on video in this stunt but all good PR begins with a good stunt. Who remembers when the gap put real tshirts in their billboard ads? A real pair of jeans was attached to their billboards which were found everywhere. Sure many of those were eventually vandalized and stolen but in the interim the gap got millions and millions of dollars in free publicity and advertising because of that stunt. Sales were up 20% that year as a result.

The thing about the internet is this — its very easy for things to become viral and spread rapidly especially when facebook is involved. It’s the perfect campaign; refer 3 friends, post it on facebook, call it a challenge, do something bold. All those elements make for the perfect viral marketing. After all who doesn’t want to post cool videos of you doing something brave and for a good cause and then nominate other friends on a public website. But most of all which made it gain traction was when celebrities started doing it. The 1st recorded celebrity was Matt Lauer on National TV he did the challenge and so it took off.

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