How Do You Drive Traffic to Your Blog? With a Bus!

May 19, 2008 at 12:17 pm | Posted in BEA, Blogs, social software, Web 2.0 | Leave a comment

I had many good conversations at the BEA Participate conference, but the one I had with Paul Tominsky of the March of Dimes was truly heartwarming.  Medical conditions have driven some of the most vibrant communities and are accordingly driving usage of Web 2.0 technologies such as blogs and wikis.  I’ve been following Beth Kanter’s blog for a while now to see great examples of how participatory, web-based technology can be used to support non-profit goals.

But one example I hadn’t noticed was the March of Dimes.  Paul told me how they had created the Share Your Story blog for parents to open up about issues following premature births or those requiring time in a neonatal intensive care unit.  Really it’s a set of blogs since a parent can write a single entry in a topical blog or create their own blog to describe their story over time. 

To attract traffic to the site, they arranged a national tour with a bus that was equipped with gear to record video of stories and post the information to the blog.  They persuaded celebrities to participate and arranged for local PR at each stop, making the blog a big hit.  The blog shows 24,490 members today and is still going strong.  What a wonderful use of technology that leverages the natural desire of people to learn, commiserate, and share.

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