Twestival, the not-for-profit organisation, has organised four global campaigns raising $1.75 million in support of global and local charities in just over two years, with the help of social media and collaboration tools from Citrix. This has enabled the implementation and development of a coherent worldwide event strategy, improving the development of project ideas and activities.
Founded in 2008 by Amanda Rose, Twestival utilises the power of social media to mobilise communications in support of charities and other good causes. “Ours is a grass roots movement generating a series of single-day events by people looking to ‘put something back’ in helping those less fortunate than themselves,” she says.
“From small beginnings, news of what we were doing at Twestival quickly went viral and a new level of organisation was essential to channel this huge groundswell of enthusiasm into a co-ordinated series of events on the same day. Working with Citrix Online Services Division, we immediately saw how online collaboration could make this happen, by providing the means to communicate effectively with volunteer groups looking to set up local events.”
Easy to use tools
Twestival selected GoToWebinar as the best way of providing expert advice to local organisers on how to set up and run fundraising events. At the same time, GoToMeeting was used at a number of levels to share best-practice ideas and provide on-going support. “We found these to be the perfect tools for mobilising support in a very short time frame, typically just a few weeks before the event,” says Rose.
“Managing this explosion of events worldwide could only happen if the tools were easy to use,” she confirms, “as we needed to sell the concept of collaboration and the value of sharing in order to support our 3,000-strong volunteers to achieve our mutual goals. And here, Citrix has proved to be the perfect partner, as the tools are simple to set up and extremely easy for participants to use, the result being that we have seen a very high level of usage.”
Rose has been able to work jointly on projects and collaborate in real time. The ability to share documents has meant that Twestival has been able to develop translations quickly to bring on board new cities, as well as providing supporting information for the website. “By working together, we can make changes instantly, confident that those holding events understand what to do and can respond in the same way,” says Rose.
The involvement of Citrix Online Services Division also provided local organising groups with an additional level of credibility in generating support. As a result, events have taken place in more than 200 towns and cities, including 28 in the UK and more than 30 in the US. The money raised for ‘charity:water’, for example, has already enabled 55 wells to be built in three countries.
“Without the power of social networking backed up by the flexibility of Citrix collaboration solutions, we could not have generated the enthusiasm or achieved the success to-date in so short a timeframe,” Rose believes. “With GoToMeeting and GoToWebinar, we now have the ideal template to build on what has been described as ‘Live Aid for the Web 2.0 generation’.”
“We recognised that there was a natural fit in terms of our respective goals. Twestival is all about the need to communicate on a global level and adopting a workshifting mentality, in working equally effectively from anywhere and with anyone.” Amanda Rose, founder, Twestival.
“Our two organisations have a similar ethos which can be summed up as ‘think global, act local’. Without the power of social networking backed by the flexibility and agility of Citrix collaboration solutions, we could not have generated the enthusiasm or achieved the success to-date in so short a timeframe.” Amanda Rose, founder, Twestival.