December 22, 2010

How social media buttresses the Fresh Air Fund


Guest post by Daniel Krueger

With the year coming to a close, it’s always fulfilling to approach the holiday season by giving to those in need. The Fresh Air Fund takes a distinctive approach to giving back to New York City kids, not by giving food or toys but the experience of summer vacations in the countryside rather than the concrete jungle.

The Fund is also taking a fresh look at marketing. Working for the past two and half years with Chris Abraham of Abraham Harrison and the network, the Fresh Air Fund uses social networks like Facebook and Twitter along with targeted blogger outreach to help inspire more people to contribute time or money.

Each year The Fresh Air Fund recruits families to host youngsters from NYC who would otherwise not have the opportunity to spend their vacation in the country. The majority of children are asked to come back year after year, as deep relationships develop between hosts and kids. Thousands of kids are also sent to one of five Fresh Air Fund summer camps because of generous donations collected all year long.

Fresh Air Fund’s social media presence

Fresh Air Fund

Word of mouth is generally the best method to inspire friends and families to participate in programs such as the Fresh Air Fund, which has been in operation since 1877. Using social media expands the reach of word of mouth, allowing the Fresh Air Fund programs to continue and grow. The Fresh Air Fund’s Facebook page has a robust fan base — crossing the 10,000 followers threshold yesterday — with 194 photos uploaded by friends and family, plus a Twitter following of more than 11,000 followers.

Other social media efforts on Fresh Air Fund’s behalf over the years include: a social media news release that captures highlights of this year’s activities, including camp news, testimonials from children and participating families, summer highlights, personal storytelling and embed codes that let supporters spread the word through bannners, widgets and embedded videos. a series of banners and widgets soliciting hosts for the 2010 program. a social media news release that offers summaries of 2009 activities, coverage of Fresh Air fund-raisers at the NYC Half-Marathon, video stories of kids taking part in the program, details about the 2009 holiday drive and embed codes.

And more social media releases:

The program’s continuing impact on young lives

This year nearly 8,000 children enjoyed their best summers yet, 370 students participated in the Career Awareness Program, 11 counselors-in-training spent three days on the Appalachian Trail, and 168 young people were Leaders-in-training. Summer 2010 featured the Precious Center for Teen Leadership at Camp Anita Bliss Coler and a surprise visit from Shape magazine editors who traveled up to camp to share their expertise and dedication to fitness, education and career development with the ABC leadership campers. Todrick Hall also paid a visit to Fresh Air Camps this summer, sharing dance and performance tips, as well as swimming and working on the Model Farm.

School is still in session, but NYC children are currently participating in Fresh Air programs, from weekly tutoring sessions to job shadowings to weekend retreats at Fund camps in upstate New York.

No matter the season, Fresh Air children remain involved, excited and forward-thinking. We need loyal friends like you to continue serving thousands of New York City children throughout the year. Visit to make a donation or inquire about becoming a host family. Continue reading

May 3, 2009

Real social media metrics from SM2

Fresh Air Fund Mentions Labeled with Outreach Dates

Chris AbrahamWhile Gerris digital, has been doing digital PR in the form of blogger relations, social media outreach, online brand promotion, Twitter and Facebook community management, and even reporting, we’ve tended to spend our resources more on operations than on metrics.

Once we got our hands on the social media metrics service SM2, by Techrigy, and started playing around, we kicked ourselves! Not only are metrics an awesome way of proving efficacy to our clients but they’re also amazing business development secret weapons, allowing us to create real-world scenarios that aid in our wooing of clients, both in casual correspondence as well as in proper proposals.

I would like to give you a quick run through some of the charts we have been creating for ourselves and our clients. The Fresh Air Fund has been nice enough to allow us to use their charts and metrics as examples of the kind of interesting and useful metrics we are able to collect and monitor.

Continue reading