Apr 15, 2019

Using your social media powers for good

Ryan Zimmerman

It was the fall of 2014 and my beloved Kansas City Royals were headed to the World Series for the first time in 29 years. It was that same year that I got to know Noah Wilson. Noah was a six year old boy in my neighborhood.

Earlier that year he was diagnosed with Ewing's Sarcoma - a form of cancer. Noah immediately left his mark on my heart and so many others. You see, despite him going through treatments and chemo, he was always thinking of other people. He started Noah's Bandage Project, which allowed for people to donate colorful and non-boring bandages to hospitals.

It was his way of helping others, despite going through an unimaginable disease.

Noah was a big Royals fan and my first thought was getting him to the World Series. I texted Noah's dad and said 'I'm going to get Noah to the World Series. I have no idea how, but I'm going to do it.'

I had huge aspirations and little funding, but I had hope and Noah's passion to push me. That next morning I started a GoFundMe for Noah, told his story, and tweeted it out to everyone I could think of.

What transpired the next 72 hours was nothing short of a miracle.

The GoFundMe went viral and over $15,000 was raised. Major League Baseball and StubHub reached out and offered tickets to Noah and his family to attend the World Series games.

Amazingly enough, now that they had free tickets to all the games, the Wilsons decided to spend a majority of the money raised to purchase tickets to the World Series to give to other families with children facing terminal diseases in the area. So why am I telling this story? We are all Internet marketers by trade. We eat and breathe and live this industry. Use your powers and knowledge for good and make a difference in someone's life.

It took me one evening and about 50 tweets to do it. That's it. I helped changed the life of a family, who in turn changed the lives of many families. I'm nothing special. It was a simple gesture that we are all capable of. All of us.

I still take time to reach out to parents who have children going through life threatening diseases to this day. I'm part of an initiative called 'Contact a Hero' where I inquire who these children view as their heroes, and then work to get ahold of them
via social media and share their story.

I've been able to get video calls, autographs, personal visits, tv appearances, and more for several kids just by putting in a
little effort. So take a moment and check your Facebook and Twitter feeds and'be open and receptive to those who are going through life and battling adversity. Life is too short to stand by and let
people fight alone.

Make a difference for someone today. [FF]

Ryan's a 15 year industry veteran and Director of Business Development at Avenue Link.

FeedFront | April 2019 | No. 46


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