Walmart uses social media contest to promote hunger relief efforts

by The City Wire staff ([email protected]) 161 views 

While there are only four days left to vote on Facebook for communities that could share in Walmart’s $2 million donation to fight hunger this spring, the power of social media suggests the final leading communities are far from determined. Walmart is urging everyone to take a few simple social media actions, beyond a single vote, that could exponentially increase community ranking on the campaign’s leader board.

Tips include:
1. Vote Often: Visit Walmart’s Facebook page every 24 hours and vote for one of 200 communities hardest hit by unemployment.

2. Share Your Personal Connection: Drum up support for your city by utilizing the “post to your wall” feature after you vote to tell a personal story about the community you selected.

3. Tap Your Facebook Network: Encourage friends to vote daily and share votes and stories with their own Facebook friends.

4. Go Beyond Facebook: Spread the word through other social networks, such as Twitter or Google+ to ask friends and followers on external networks to vote on Facebook.

The community with the most votes will receive $1 million to help fight hunger; the next 20 communities receiving the most votes will each receive $50,000 for hunger relief. The winning communities will be announced on May 1.

Nearly 49 million Americans at some point this year won’t know where their next meal is coming from. With spring traditionally marked by a decrease in donations to food banks.

A December 2011 report from the U.S. Conference of Mayors, ‘Hunger and Homelessness in US Cities,’ cites unemployment as the leading cause of hunger in American cities. The list of the 200 communities hardest hit by unemployment featured on Walmart’s Facebook page is provided by the U.S. Department of Labor.

In addition to the Facebook campaign, Walmart is inviting customers to visit one of its Walmart stores and Neighborhood Markets nationwide and purchase products from participating suppliers – General Mills, ConAgra Foods, Kraft Foods and Kellogg Company – who are helping to provide more than 42 million meals to families struggling with hunger