Articles

Using the Web to Save Tigers in the Wild

In India on July 16, 2011 by Abby Tagged: , , ,

When you think of India, several things might come to mind. And likely in that list is the Bengal tiger, which has been the symbol of India since 2500 BC.  Despite its status India, the tiger population is in swift decline.

Save Our Tigers homepage

To solve this problem, companies, nonprofits, and individuals in India are working to save their national symbol.  One such campaign is “Save Our Tigers,” an effort supported by telecommunications giant Aircel in partnership with WWF-India.

The site reaches their audience through their website and Facebook page, with Stripey the Cub acting as the face of the campaign.  Indians can “roar” (pledge) their support for the campaign within their own social networks, on the “Join the Roar” webpage, or offline through volunteer events.  In December 2010, the campaign held a 12-hour telethon on major television channels in India that garnered a lot of interest and support.  Since then, they have branched out and moved to social media channels to engage and promote activism.

The campaign has a lot going for it.  The mission is important, Indians feel connected to the cause, the content is powerful and moving, they are making progress and they have access to valuable resources through well-known partners.

On the other hand, the campaign could do more to actively engage its audience using social media.

A few suggestions:

  • To better engage online, the campaign should do more than post news on its Facebook page.  By promoting two-way communication, the community might feel more connected and inspired to get involved and take action.

Stripey's Facebook Page - all "push" no "pull" communications

  • Aircel is a huge company with many resources.  The campaign could leverage these to develop content for additional channels, including mobile apps. Aircel’s mobile presence is huge, but Save Our Tigers is missing out on this space.  Aircel’s Blyk service sends updates and promotions to mobile users based on their interests – this could be a great way to reach and engage the younger Indian population.
  • It sounds simple enough, but the campaign should keep content fresh.  The campaign blog is advertised and linked to from other areas of the site, but it has not been updated for well over a year.  If there simply aren’t resources to continue blogging, Save Our Tigers might consider removing the blog and repurposing the content rather than seeming inactive.

Save Our Tigers clearly makes the point that saving the tiger is necessary to uphold the heritage of India, but more could be done to make that point in a quicker and more engaging way online, and translate their success into social media success.

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One Response to “Using the Web to Save Tigers in the Wild”

  1. I remember having seen this campaign and thinking it was a great concept. You do a nice job of giving the campaign credit for its importance and ambition, but also offering some real suggestions for how it could be updated and improved. Good find and smart thoughts on how to improve it. This is a simple and well done blog post. (5)

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