We’ve got spirit, yes we do
I was perusing Facebook last night, and I came across a YouTube video a friend of mine posted from the recent Homecoming activities from Riverside High School in Greer, S.C., my alma mater.
I don’t often share video links (I mean, how many kittens swinging from a tree can one person watch, I ask you?). But this one moved me so much I felt compelled to pass it along to you.
The gist of the video is that this year’s Homecoming Queen is Natalie — a beautiful, happy girl who just happens to have Down’s Syndrome. She won the title with 82% of the student body voting for her. You can watch the video here: Riverside Homecoming 2011 (caution: tissue alert).
This story makes me proud on so many levels. One because it shows young people at their best — no one prompted them to vote Natalie as Homecoming Queen. They did it because they wanted to. I think young people get a bad rap a lot of times, so it’s heartwarming to see them making good news for a change.
And I’m proud because this happened in my community, in my home town. This story would’ve touched me no matter where it happened, but because it happened here, where I live and work, it makes me want to share it more. When you’re part of a community that does good things, you want to pass it on.
To bring this back to a branding level (this is a PR firm’s blog, after all!), remember, your community members will share things that make them proud. If they’re truly part of your tribe, they’ll want to pass along stories that show others, “I’m part of this group.”
As you’re developing your 2012 marketing plans, as I’m sure many of you are right now, think about how you’ll develop and share content that makes your community proud to be in it with you. What are you doing that makes people want to be part of your family?