Thursday, October 31, 2019

Using Celebrity Power More Effectively

This week the 2019 Obama Summit was held in Chicago. I was not invited to attend but followed on Twitter. Many sessions were live streamed so I and others could have been almost in the room. In addition, we could have been Tweeting and interacting using the #ObamaSummit hashtag.

If you did, you would be included on this map created by NodeXL, which is a product of the SMR Foundation. This represents Tweets of 6,463 Twitter users using #ObamaSummit between October 21 and October 30, 2019.

to view map, click here
The map is interactive so you can zoom in and click on any of the nodes to see who was Tweeting. In the information provided below the map you can see who the most influential Tweeters were, which included President Obama, Michelle Obama, Ava DuVernay, and many other high visibility people.

click to enlarge
I created a few screenshots to illustrate this.

This graphic shows the cluster at the far left of the NodeXL map.

I used my marker to point to the node that is President Obama's Twitter account (#1).  If you zoom in closer you can click on any icon to see who that person is. Double click and open that person's Twitter profile. You can then follow them, add them to a list, or just scroll through their posts to see what they are saying on Twitter.

click to enlarge

The middle cluster (3-1) features Michelle Obama's Twitter account in the middle.  At the bottom of this cluster (2-1) are Twitter accounts of Oprah Winfrey,  FLOTUS44 (Michelle Obama) and Kerry Washington.

The cluster to the far right features Ava DuVernay @ava in the middle. There are many, many other highly visible people within these clusters, plus far less visible people like myself.

Unfortunately there are also some "haters" who are using the hashtag to post their own views.

I'm not an expert in doing an analysis of these maps so invite any who do have that skill to do their own analysis of this map, then post it to Twitter. I'll update this article with a link to your analysis (more than one would be welcome). I would really love to see one by the Obama Foundation!

The most frequent website referred to in all of these Tweets was The Obama Foundation.  I've visited the web site and in the Mission section are a few featured initiatives.  That means any who were motivated by this year's Obama Summit, who visited the website, might be motivated to click into any of these initiatives and learn ways they could use their own time, talent or dollars to help, or find ideas and resources that enable them to help a similar organization in another place.

As far as that goes, it's good.  It does not go far enough.  As former Commander-in-Chief I hope President Obama has a basic understanding of the value of maps, as used by military commanders to put troops and supplies in all places where an enemy is concentrated.

Thus, I'd want to find a map on his web site, or maybe even a collection of maps, such as I show in the concept map below (from my collection).  If you look at the 2019 Obama Summit page, you see a theme of "Places Reveal our Purpose" but not one map! Maybe maps are embedded in some of the presentations. I don't know.

Click here to open and view map. Open the links at the bottom of each node.
This concept map shows a) work the Tutor/Mentor Connection/Institute, LLC has been doing since 1993 to draw resources (attention, volunteers, dollars, ideas, etc) to youth tutor, mentor and learning programs in the Chicago area); b) work others do to collect and share information that shows where people throughout the US need extra help; and c) the United Nations Global Goals, which point to places throughout the world where extra help is needed.

The data map could be just one link, or story, in a resource section on the Obama website. Including this would enable the site to serve more as an intermediary, connecting everyone who was paying attention to #ObamaSummit this week, or in future weeks, to places throughout the world where those people can get involved.  A narration of this data map could have been one of the featured presentation at the ObamaSummit. 

Now look at the graphic I show below.  I created this several years ago when Mr. Obama was President.  The photo shows him when he was a speaker at the Tutor/Mentor Leadership and Networking Conference in Chicago in 1999....which the Tutor/Mentor Connection organized.

Attention needs to be continued throughout year to increase flow of resources.

This graphic was created when the I had the resources to organize May and November conferences and an Aug/September volunteer recruitment campaign in the Chicago region, and when I had more resources to collect and share information about youth tutor/mentor programs in the region. You can read about the quarterly event strategy in this PDF and in this Collaboration Strategy PDF.

In addition, the graphic illustrates that if highly visible people use their websites, social media and personal appearances to point to web sites with maps and information about every youth program in a geographic region, volunteers and donors will be more motivated to provide the on-going time, talent and dollars each program needs to constantly improve and become great at helping kids through school and into adult lives.

By using a map this strategy aims to distribute needed resources to all poverty areas, not just highly visible programs, or highly visible places. 

Anyone can be the YOU

President Obama emphasized the power of telling stories during this year's #ObamaSummit and on his web site.  I want to emphasize that if those stories point to maps of Chicago (or other places) that show where poverty is concentrated and were youth programs are located they can serve as advertising to draw volunteers and donors to all of those places....if they are repeated throughout the year.

That's really important. Calling attention to a program or place just one or two times a year is not what traditional marketers do to draw customers to their products, services and retail stores.  

Furthermore, you don't need to be the President or a movie star to be the YOU in the above graphic.  Anyone can use the resources I point to to support stories they tell every day that show where help is needed, why help is  needed, and who needs help...and to call for actions that deliver needed support to those places.

If the #ObamaSummit organizers post weekly stories on their blog that point to these ideas, then share them on Twitter, they could also ask NodeXL or any other network analysis expert to create maps showing how many people are engaging with them, who those people are, and how they are connecting to each other.

I've been sharing ideas like this on this blog since 2005 and on the web site since the late 1990s. They are now available for anyone who wants to expand their thinking on ways to help youth in poverty move through school and into adult lives, and to draw people together to solve any of the complex problems we're facing.

I hope you'll take a look. I'll look forward to connecting with you on Twitter, Facebook and/or Linkedin.

I'm trying to scare up some resources to support Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC. Click here if you want to help.

10-16-21 update - I pointed to NodeXL in this any several other articles on my blogs. Dr Graham Mackenzie, GPST3, Edinburgh, Scotland, has been doing some interesting work using NodeXL to understand participation in events. Here's a link pointing to a collection of his articles.   

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