Fact: Put #Kardashian in a tweet and watch it spread.

Yesterday I posted a series of tweets with facts about the crisis in the Horn of Africa as part of the USAID FWD Global Day of Action, trying to do my part to spread my word to some of the 13.3 million people the agency was trying to reach with facts about the crisis.

I have a reasonable following on Twitter (around 1,200) for a personal account, and followers were kind enough to retweet some of the facts.

Actual facts about the Horn of Africa: 5 or fewer RTS.

This tweet:





More than 40 RTs and numerous comments.

Lesson: connect the wonky development numbers to pop culture and other contextual cues that people can relate to, and anecdotal evidence indicates that they’ll be more likely to laugh a little & pay some attention. We live in a sea of stats and data which can be hard to navigate or personalize. Connecting something that has been splashed all over the media (the Kardashian wedding) to what’s happening in a place that seems so distant (Somalia/Kenya/Ethiopia) seemed to get the point across.

That said, I have no way of knowing if the people who responded were already engaged in the issue, actually looked at the website,  or took any other action. But I do think we need to start looking at ways to connect the information we have about global health and crises we’re trying to increase awareness of to examples that make sense to the general public.

Your thoughts? Any success stories on spreading the word for #FWD’s big day? I’d love to hear them.

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