Boston Marathon Tragedy: The Power Of Social Media

As an author, especially as a self-published author, you are a brand.  Everything you post, write, tweet, etc comes to reflect on you as a brand.  So yesterday, when it had not even been twenty four hours after the Boston Marathon tragedy, and you decide to devote your social media efforts to promoting your book, how do you think that is going to reflect on you?

I am not saying you have to go into promoting/advertising/marketing hiatus because a tragedy occurred.  What I am saying is that it might reflect better if you give it a solid day before you start sounding off trying to get people interested in your book(s).

When I read through the tweets from the people I follow the day after the Boston Marathon tragedy, I was shocked and slightly appalled by the lack of people spreading the word about ways individuals can help those affected by the tragedy.  I mean, turn on the news and officials are still unsure of the full amount of damage and casualties resulting from this horrific event.  So far, there are three dead including an eight year old boy and a young woman my sister knew.  Nearly two hundred are injured.  Then there is the psychological trauma that can never be expressed in numbers.

You have to do something, not sit on the sidelines and feel bad while others help, saying to yourself how you still can’t believe it happened.  Well, it did happen.  And it was horrible.  But what is also horrible is not helping.

I will post this link again.  It’s to a CNN article explaining ways you can help:

http://www.cnn.com/2013/04/16/us/iyw-boston-marathon/index.html

If you don’t like CNN, you can just Google “Boston Marathon ways to help” or something along those lines, and a bunch of articles will come up for you to take your pick.  Once you find an article or cause or charity you want to help, please spread the world on social media.  Facebook, Twitter, blogging…help spread the word.

Social media is very much like the domino effect.  One person posts/tweets/blogs something, another person posts/tweets/blogs which inspires another person to…well, you get the point.

Before I end this post, I would like to highlight one author who used her social media powers for good.  Carrie Jones, author of the Need series, posted in her LiveJournal about the Boston Marathon tragedy.  She was there taking pictures of her friend, and when the explosions happened she helped out any way she could.  She gave runners money so they could get on the T when it started working.  She gave a runner her coat.  She passed around her phone so people could get in touch with family members.  She comforted those around her.

Her LiveJournal post was picked up by The Huffington Post.  This is the link to her post:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/carrie-jones/i-was-at-the-boston-marathon_b_3091219.html

I follow Carrie Jones on Facebook as well as am a fan of her books.  She is a great writer and an amazing person.  She has her statuses be about her dogs and cats, and when a person is missing in her area, she makes her status be about that missing person in efforts to help find them.  She, in short, uses her social media to help.  When the Boston Marathon tragedy occurred, she used her social media to help and continues to help.

I think we should all take a page from Carrie Jones.  If you are reading this blog, chances are you probably have either a blog of your own or a Facebook or a Twitter account.  Please help spread the world about helping Boston and those affected by the tragedy.

Thank you.  I know the phrase, “Thank you,” gets used a lot, but in the wake of such a tragedy, the phrase rings true to those who help.

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