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A fundraiser and awareness campaign for the ALS Association, the “Ice Bucket Challenge” has taken social media by storm since it popped off on July 29, with more than 176,000 people tweeting about it in the past seven days alone. The rules of the challenge are simple: once challenged, a participant has 24 hours to either dump a bucket of ice water over their head, or donate $100 to the ALS charity of their choice. To enhance the outreach and spread awareness further, every participant must then nominate three more people to either take the challenge or pay up.

Even though a lot of my followers and connections on social media sites are taking a slightly different approach to the “Ice Bucket Challenge”, all in all this is such a clever marketing campaign. What I have noticed on my social media outlets is that a lot of people aren’t understanding why you would do the challenge and not donate so I have been seeing my connects first donating money and then doing the challenge – Dollar amounts varying from $10 and up. Although, if you do not accept the challenge, you are responsible for a $100 donation towards ALS.

When running clever campaigns such as this one, people will ask, “What does dumping ice water on my head have anything to do with supporting ALS?” The truth is just that, awareness. More people are talking about, and aware of, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease) more than ever before. And donations? Well donations are there as well,

According to the ALS Association, more than 70,000 new donors have given money to one of its 38 chapters since July 29, contributing to a grand total of $4 million in donations during this same period (compared to only $1.12 million during the same period last year.) leaving little doubt that this initiative has been a massive success!

The author of the article goes on to say that the brains of this campaign have taught us 4 important lessons on how to run a successful viral social media campaign,

Here they are