Yesterday another great 50/50 project went live. #AfricaNeedsYou disrupts the celebrity 'pay to tweet' culture by asking them to donate their earnings to famine relief in East Africa.
We caught up with Jack and Paul, the duo behind this latest endeavour, to find out more about how the project came about.
How did you first hear about the 50/50 challenge and what prompted you to take part?
We first heard about the project through some friends in the industry. We were horrified by the severity of the situation in East Africa and felt the need to do our bit.
What is #AfricaNeedsYou? Can you tell us a bit about how you came up with the idea?
The two objectives were to raise money and spread awareness. Twitter’s fantastic for spreading messages and has a huge population of rich celebrities. Celebrities have a lot of influence on Twitter. But some are using it for financial gain, by tweeting brand endorsements for cash. We wanted to harness the collective power of the crowd and encourage these celebrities to start using Twitter for good. We united the crowd with a consistent tone by providing a platform to send prewritten tweets. The more tweets we send, the louder our voice becomes.
How did Enjoythis get involved with the project?
A friend of ours used to live with Sofia, the founder of Enjoythis. They had done some great work for Umbro and Anomaly so we approached them with the idea. Luckily, they really liked it and agreed to produce the project. They’ve been absolutely amazing throughout the whole process.
What was the inspiration behind it? Are there other examples of people using Tweet power to get celebs to do things?
I don’t think so. Social media’s always evolving - it’s fun to try and use it in new ways. Strangely enough, I think the London riots had a slight influence on the project. It’s hard to ignore large groups of people, acting in unison. No violence here though - this is just a peaceful demonstration! The more people join in, the more likely it is the celebrities will listen.
How did you choose which celebs to target?
We only targeted those who tweet brand endorsements for cash.
Who do you think is most likely to donate to this cause?
Well, we hope Rev Run lives up to his outfit. We hope that dog collar’s not just for show!
Do you think you could end up with a sort of celebrity arms race? Do you have any ways to recognise the celebs who give the most as a result of this campaign?
We decided not to disclose the amount donated by each celebrity. Giving to charity should never be competitive, even when involving 50 Cent and Floyd Mayweather.
What plans do you have to help propagate this project?
The very nature of the idea should hopefully help to spread it through Twitter; by tweeting at celebrities, you are also tweeting to your followers.
What do you think is the key to success?
This all hinges on how many people get involved. We need as many people as possible to send as many tweets as possible.
Any final words to anyone reading this post right now?
Help us out and send a few tweets - www.africaneedsyou.com. And if you’re flush, please donate a few quid yourself ;-)