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Is There Strength In Numbers? Or Social Slacktivism?

Let me start by saying I have debated writing this post for at least the past three months.  Why?  Well the post has nothing to do about benefitting your business online or how to use some sort of new social media tool.  In fact, let me just get it out in the first paragraph and say that this post is about me and a situation I am in now where I need your help.  If that bothers you, feel free to click off this post now.

As some of you may or may not know, in October of this year my wife and I are going to accomplish something that has been a passion of both of us.  Before we even got married almost six years ago we both decided we wanted to make differences in other people's lives through taking short-term missions trips to other countries.  On October 22nd we will be loading a plane to head out on our first trip as a couple for one month.  If you want to see all the details of our trip, you can visit the site I built specifically for it at http://sendustosouthafrica.com.

Over the past few months Katherine & I have done a lot of fundraising and have been overwhelmed by the generosity of so many friends and family.  To this point we have raised slightly over half of the total costs for both of us to go.

When we started raising money for our upcoming trip, I immediately thought it would not be a difficult task at all due to the large number of connections we both have online through the various social media platforms.  Between the two of us, I am roughly guessing we have around 23,000+ connections.  When you then multiply this by the number of friends & connections our connections have as well, the number would exponentially increase.  So raising the money for the trip seemed simple and easy.

Then one day I was introduced to a new word by my friend Matthew Shadbolt called "Slacktivism."  The definition of this term from the Urban Dictionary is this:  "The act of participating in obviously pointless activities as an expedient alternative to actually expending effort to fix a problem."   Even after reading his masterpiece and listening to lengthy discussions in the comments, I still doubted this to be true of social media.  I mean, I've heard dozens of stories of how different things have raised tons of money for a cause through social media avenues and how they had tremendous success at the same time.  Yet in our case so far, probably 95% of the money raised all came through offline connections we have with friends and family members.  To say it has got me down a bit would probably be an epic understatement.  We now find ourselves just a mere 3 days before our deposit deadline of September 10th short of our total goal we wanted to raise.

So here's my challenge to everyone:  We have three days to raise basically $5,000.  Can you help me prove that social media does not suffer from slacktivism by making a monetary donation of any sort?  Maybe right now you are strapped tight and don't have the extra to share.  I get that & understand completely.  As someone who owns his own business and has a family with two young children I truly understand.  If you can't give monetarily, will you at least assist me by sharing this post with your friends on the various social networks?  The more people who view this post means the more chances we have to reaching our goal by the deadline.  I've heard sayings before "There's strength in numbers" and "Many hands make the load light" which I believe are both very applicable right now.

If you are like me, you have probably think a small donation wouldn't do much help, so why even bother.  My type of personality can sometimes be that all or nothing type, where if I can't give the $5,000 needed, then there's no point in giving any. But, if 500 people each made a $10 donation, we would have things covered in full.  Most everyone I know has the ability to spare that right now.  That's the equivalent of a Frappuccino & bagel one morning at Starbucks or a #9 value meal at McDonald's.

So can you help us out?  I'm placing the donation form below.  If you make a donation, please let me know by either tweeting about it with the hashtag #5KFORSA.  If you are not on Twitter, send me a message on Facebook or whatever other means you want.  You can also assist us by sharing this post on social networks, or through a re-blog.  I appreciate your help and look forward to reaching our goal!

Let me finish by saying this, if this post offended you or upset you, I apologize.  I promise that this will be the only time you hear me ask for donations for this trip on this site.  As I stated in my opening paragraph, I debated writing here for several months before constructing this post.  I felt that as this is my most popular site of all the ones I own, it would be the most likely place to share this post.  If you want to follow along as we take this upcoming trip, I hope to update this site while we are gone.

I'm a full time Myrtle Beach Real Estate Agent that focuses on homes for sale in Myrtle Beach and Carolina Forest Real Estate.

 

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I am also the Co-Founder of 210 Consulting- Social Media Advisors.  I have traveled the country as a social media speaker.  If you would like more information on any of the topics discussed in this blog, please contact me directly.  We specialize in social media training, online consulting, and the creation of your own custom WordPress site.

 

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Comment balloon 4 commentsJeremy Blanton • September 07 2012 09:01AM
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