Start a Movement!

Post by Frank Barry - 7.31.2009 - Follow me on Twitter

Are you creating a movement or just campaigning?

Recent initiatives such as Charity:Water12for12k and Twestival have wowed us with their ability to create powerful movements using social media and the internet as their driving force.

Lance Armstrong Foundation, Susan G. KomenThe American Heart Association and many others started movements that are changing our world to this day. Each has withstood the test of time – Surviving no matter what the communication channel or how their message is spread.

The incredible people supporting each cause and the passionate teams leading these organizations are at the heart of their success.

Start a Movement!Movements are amazing to watch form. They have an incredible ability to affect change in our world. The organic grass roots nature of movements coupled with their passionate supporters give them the ability to quickly spread around the world one person at a time.

It’s not just about creating campaigns, it’s about creating movements.



An excerpt from Brains On Fire helps drive home why movements are becoming more and more important in today’s highly connected world:

Movements go on as long as kindred spirits are involved.

Movements are part of the evangelist vocabulary. (Evangelize, passion, love…)

Movements are organic and rooted in passion.

Movements rely on word of mouth, where the people are the medium.

Movements are part of the evolutionist theory—whatever we co-create with the fans they can own and run with it, which will evolve over time.


Below you will find some great resources to help you learn more about creating a movement. You should also check out Beth Kanter's "Movement Building" series. She was kind enough to share this post there.


What’s a Movement?

Social movements are a type of group action. They are large informal groupings of individuals and/or organizations focused on specific political or social issues, in other words, on carrying out, resisting or undoing a social change. 


Tips on Getting Started:


A Few Examples:


A for-profit example that gives us some good insight:

You should also check out the Building a Movement Project. They help Nonprofits!!


What other examples have you seen emerging due to the new ways people communicate online? How are movements being started and how are they spreading in today’s modern and highly connected world?


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