I occasionally see a campaign that I think is important but I can see they aren’t going around it the right way. Like this Spot.US cyclist story. Spot.Us is a site where journalists can post up that they want to write a story, what the story is about, and then the community funds it. It’s like Kickstarter but for journalists. The problem is, you can’t just put your social object up on a social media site and hope people will find it.  In the case of the story “crash puts cyclist in a coma” below, there’s a few things missing. But first:

Bottom Left, Cyclist Story

A woman gets run over by a car:

Around 10:30 on the morning of May 22, Jan Morgan was biking a stretch of State Highway 50 just a couple hours north of Jackson, Mississippi, when Robbie Norton, driving at 55 miles per hour, struck her from behind and carried her 200 feet before coming to a stop.

The journalist wants to raise money for:

I’ve been working on the research and reporting for this story since October, and am currently planning a reporting trip to Mississippi.The Oxford American, a national magazine award winner in 2004, plans to publish the piece. The story will focus on the accident itself and Jan’s recovery, the movement now afoot in Mississippi to amend the state’s three-foot law to include harsher penalties for drivers who violate the rule and cause serious injury or death to cyclists, and why the Morgans feel like the state court system has failed to bring true justice. In addition, the article will examine trends in cycling laws throughout the South, as well as efforts in several cities to improve conditions and safety for cyclists. Feel free to e-mail me with questions at andrew@andrewzaleski.com.

So far this amount has been raised: 

528.18 credits. Now Spot.Us doesn’t explain anywhere what that is worth and their video system halts when I try to review the FAQ videos. But let’s say it’s a credit for a dollar. Raising a $1400 bucks of which $528 has been raised. They are also looking for Talent donors – people to sift through documents and take photos etc. Nine donors so far…

What would YOU do to improve this social media campaign?

I can see a number of issues. Spot.us is not a very well developed site… Facebook share or Tweet this buttons are really basic and almost hidden, even their own videos are on their own site, not YouTube so I can’t embed them here. The @spotus on twitter account gets about 3 clicks for each promotional link. Maybe the journalist should move onto Kickstarter? Also, there doesn’t seem to be any Influencer seeding happening – shouldn’t the cyclists be getting behind this? And a tonne of other points. But. What about YOU? What would YOU do to improve this campaign, get more volunteers, more funds and more awareness? Lemme know.

If you like this “solve the social media mystery” type of post, I can do post up some more. We should also have a prize. What would you like to win? Make it cheap and cheerful! 😛