May 27, 2010
Most of us involved in marketing know the value social media can bring to a program or cause. But it’s rarely been as apparent as during the recent disappearance of Hope, the black bear cub, from her mother, Lily, in northern Minnesota. For a week, 97K+ Facebook fans waited with bated breath for news and updates on the missing cub. The page’s wall and discussion tabs have been inundated with continuous messages of support and prayer for the little four-month-old and her mother, who captivated the hearts of nature lovers.
It will be interesting to see how the North American Bear Center uses the page moving forward now that Hope has been reunited with her mother. It may sound a little crass and “too soon” to discuss, but I hope they take advantage of the interest this little lost cub has created and use the page to continue to raise awareness, interest and money for their cause. Whether it’s the development of Hope Cub branded items/gear or an appearance on national TV morning shows, I have a feeling Lily and her little bear cub are destined for a life of stardom. And considering the NABC doesn’t take federal funds, I’m sure they could use all the help they can get.
The story of her disappearance and reunion couldn’t get more perfect. She truly lived up to her name by giving fans around the world a little hope – and a fairly tale ending.