Power of Facebook

Facebook is a great place to find out what your class of ’90 classmates have been up to, what kind of burger your best friend ate over the weekend, and what your cousin’s doppelganger looks like.  But did you know that you can even use Facebook to recruit coalition members for your campaign?  Read on…

The other day I heard a really great story about the use of social media in a tobacco control campaign from Phina Li, who works for the Asian Youth Center, a subcontractor in Los Angeles County. I asked her to tell me more about it. She said it was a great story for those “working really hard trying to recruit youth into your coalition.” They used Facebook during a park clean-up activity in their campaign for smokefree parks in Arcadia. Here’s her story:

“One of our youth, Chloe from Friends of Clean Air Coalition, put a few pictures taken during our park cleanups in Arcadia Dogs Park on Facebook.  Before the end of the day, she got friends saying that they wanted to join the coalition too because it looks fun.  She got response from 5-6 of her friends.  Most of them asked where the pictures were taken, what she was holding on her hand, and who were the guys in the picture.  Chloe explained what the Friends of Clean Air is about, why we are doing park clean ups.  Most important, the guys in the picture are the members of Friends of Clean Air Coalition.  Two of Chloe’s high school friends want to join the coalition after that.” 

Phina said that Facebook promoted the campaign in a fun way to the youth. “[They] got to meet new friends, have fun while doing a good cause by picking up the cigarette butts and doing anti smoking volunteer work.”

So this is a reminder to everyone to find creative ways to utilize social media programs such as Facebook and Twitter in your campaigns, you never know what might come out of a simple step like posting your photos on Facebook.

-Vanessa Marvin


  1. Posted Oct 27, 2010 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

    Great post! It’s true – Facebook is a fantastic place for tobacco control advocates to organize and recruit!

    It’s particularly perfect for youth coalitions because, for most, it’s their preferred method of contact. If you’re interested, I recently wrote a post called “Why Facebook? A look at Using Facebook for Youth Advocacy” http://meganyarbrough.com/?p=169

  2. Posted Nov 8, 2010 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

    Great! Thanks Megan. I will check that post out.

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