How one idea can change the world.
If you ask me about “Saving the World” or protecting the planet then I will point you to the fantastic book “The World without us” and I will say “Do you mean saving mankind ?” . I am notoriously the least ‘green’ of all my friends and colleagues so why am I hammering on about Commit21 and Earth Hour then?
When I sat with the team at Just Means and we discussed what we could offer WWF to promote Earth Hour to create a conversation using Social Media and Social Networks. it was clear that what we really wanted was a way to capture great ideas in relation to Earth Hour. So we set out to build Commit21 ( yes its Commit To One and 21 as in the century )
Websites, Social networks and Conversations
Websites however are not like baseball fields. If you build them then they do not necessarily come. Promoting a website like Commit21 requires building upon the concept on which it is built. Establishing the ‘idea’ of the idea-site into the conversational streams of every day twitterers, bloggers and contributors requires repetition, targeted conversations, emails and a few good social media tools; so here is where I am talking Earth Hour for Commit21.
The video equivalent of twitter, so many 12 seconds video conversations lend them selves to efficient conversation points of ideas. The team at 12Seconds.tv are working with JJProjects and I know there are going to be some awesome ideas for Earth Hour and Challenges to be set. If you have an Iphone then go get iPhone 12seconds application, yes its not free but how else do these guys eat ? This lets you grab three images , add some audio and upload it to 12seconds.tv I cant think of a better way to grab that moment in Earth Hour can you ? 
There is something about Phreadz which lends itself so well to capturing the breadth of an event. Phreadz channels fit so well in categorizing a conversation and lending to the aggregation of that large cross section of media. Phreadz is already collating Video , Image, Text and Links ( what @Kosso refers to as V.I.T.A.L ) under the Earth Hour banner and with luck we will be feeding back into and around that content for Commit21 activities that will be occurring.
If a Website is the cinema of promotion then twitter is the talkradio cousin. Whilst it is easier for me to use my own account to promote and create content for Commit21. However the benefits in using a separate channel that allows people to tune in , and out , of the conversation around Earth Hour and Commit21 are not to be ignored.
Faceboook Fan pages
Facebook appears to be becoming the inverse of the internet. Just like the days when Compuserve and Cix provided gateways to Websites via some awkward channel now Facebook takes content and puts it behind its garden wall. However, as in the days of compuserve so in the days of Facebook. I know many , many more people who are far more prolific on facebook than their day to day use of the internet and its universe of websites. Possibly its that very garden wall that obscures the view from the hill which enables many more people to feel comfortable within it. Where Facebook fan pages come into their own is the ability to share from the page and to get stats and measurement information from the ‘View Insights’ page
Linked In groups
The flipside to facebook is Linked-in and thier groups system which feels much more like a networking/bulletin board space. However the conversational aspect and the ability to invite contacts and groups which reflects facebook make it an ideal mirror to the facebook fanpage since there are many who like to play on the outside of Facebook as well.
Stats, Measurement and Tracking
Tracking these conversations is possible although it can feel a little like juggling kittens since you need to bear in mind the context of the information you are seeing. However I can point to these tools are being the day in , day out , tools of my oversight and reporting.
Tracking of Links and Shortcuts emailed and twittered.
I use Bitly which keeps tracks of Addresses that it has been exposed to. Whats great about this is that if you were to use bitly to create a short form address for the same site then it will offer you the same short code that I have used. Unless you choose a custom short code for yourself. This means I can track how quickly and from where a link is being selected in close to real time. heres an example info page click on the past week option to collate the data.
Searching for conversational threads by way of search.twitter.com let me track the hashtag for #earthhour as well as locating anyone who has posted commit21 content or has linked to any of the Bit.ly shortcodes I may have used. I can use this speculatively with tinyurl and many other shortcode sites as well.
Tracking blogs, conversations and content around the web by way of Google Alerts also proves useful since it tracks the occurence of peoples blogs, widgets and links for me which in turn allow me to place a finger on the bookmark of measurement and productivity.
Finally Google Analytics plays a role in tracking visitors and the usual statistical generation for report building as you go though as you can see its one of a number of tools required for a level of social network optimisation.
I hope this rather overly long blog post has been informative and I want you to take a moment and head over to Commit21 and see if theres an idea you could commit to or even suggest ?
Thanks for reading.