CauseTalk Radio Ep05: Homeless Hotspots Roam SXSW, Austin for Money. Is it Right?

In this episode of CauseTalk Radio, Megan and I talk with Chris Noble, CEO of Cause Media Group, and Mark Horvarth, Founder of InvisiblePeople.TV. We discuss the uproar at this year's SXSW over one agency's deployment of the homeless as human wifi for the technology laden hordes that descended on Austin.

Chris Noble also shares the status of other cause ventures at SXSW and whether nonprofits should book their trips now to next year's gathering.



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New York Times: Use of Homeless as Internet Hot Spots Backfires on Marketer

Huffington Post: 'Homeless Wi-Fi Hotspots' At SXSW: The Real Story (VIDEO) [By Mark Horvarth, InvisiblePeople.TV]

Foursquare 'Checkin for Charity' Hits 135k Checkins, Raises $15k

The Foursquare Checkin for Charity campaign at SXSW 2010 I first reported on last week was a big success for the Save the Children Haiti Relief Fund.

  • By the end of SXSWi, attendees had logged over 135,000 checkins on Foursquare.
  • The effort was  supported by over 2,400 tweets that included the #sxswHaiti hashtag.
  • The 25 cents per login PayPal and Microsoft pledged for a maximum gift of $15,000 was achieved in less than 48 hours!
  • The campaign also got some good press, including in WSJ.

The campaign was a great boost for Foursquare as location based services were all the rave at SXSWi this year. Checkin for Charity also showed this tech-savvy crowd what was possible with Foursquare in the cause world.

Kerrie LeBourveau, a member of the StudioGood team that executed the campaign, explains.

"It was a great way to energize an already active community.  Sometimes when I told people about it, they were taken aback and had no idea that something like this was even possible with Foursquare! It was pretty cool to see.  Also, we saw a lot of people actually SHOWING each other their little foursquare messages. Kind of neat to see a guerrilla kind of thing that was not totally forced or pushed on by some big brand."

This may really be the lasting impact of Checkin for Charity. Foursquare ambassadors who can share best practices with causes that will finally have a  social media platform for cause marketing they can truly call their own.

Looking for more ideas of how you can launch a Foursquare cause marketing program for your local nonprofit? Check out this one. Must be a good idea. I got it from Boston's own Harvard University and I've heard they're wicked smaht!

Foursquare Check-in for Charity Begins Today at SXSW

Cause marketers and Foursquare fanatics take note: some great stuff is kicking off today at SXSW 2010 in Austin, TX. Get your notepads out and sharpen your pencils because the folks at StudioGood will have some great lessons to share over the next few days. And I'll be the one reporting the news! Although I won't be doing it alone because Boston needs me too much with the Red Sox home opener less than a month away.

Kerrie LeBourveau from StudioGood is on the ground in Austin and promises lots of details, pics and video so I can share with all of you just how this first in location-based cause marketing unfolds at SXSW.

Here are the details of the Check-in for Charity to bring you up to speed.

  • Starting today every time you Check-in on Foursquare in Austin, Microsoft and PayPal will donate $0.25 toward Save the Children up to $15,000.
  • There will be check-in locations around SXSWi.
  • You don't need to be in Austin to help. Just use the hashtag #sxswHaiti on Twitter and Save the Children and Microsoft and PayPal will make the same donation.

Stay tune for my updates on Check-in for Charity, its progress and my insights on how we can all learn how to combine Foursquare and cause marketing to raise more money for causes.