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Social Media for Social Good: Driving Breast Cancer Awareness

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Update: Due to unforeseen circumstances, this event has changed considerably since we published this post. It will now be an almost entirely virtual social media event. One event that isn’t online, however, is the HerHighway 2012 kick-off today. A drive team of ladies is heading from Los Angeles to Las Vegas to the Exotics Racing School to take a few spins around the Las Vegas Motor Speedway to help raise funds for breast cancer research and awareness. You can also follow this drive for breast cancer awareness by following #HerHighway on Twitter.

Today, HerHighway is launching an enormous event: an all-female national drive from California to New York for Breast Cancer Awareness.

HerHighway’s editor-in-chief Christina Selter, the force behind this endeavor, is an automotive journalist and spokesperson. HerHighway’s mission “is a team of female automotive and lifestyle experts on a mission to empower women with bumper-to-bumper automobile knowledge and everything along the way.”

Starting on September 25, during Social Media week and ending on October 1, this charitable event is geared towards raising awareness and funds for breast cancer. A total of 50 women from across the United States will be teaming up in teams to hit the road and making stops at many cities along the way.

Along for this exciting journey are automotive journalists, automobile executives, race car drivers, social media phenoms, rockstar bloggers, foodies, and top-notch fashionistas who are taking time off from their jobs to participate. Driving cars that will be auctioned off at charity events, the teams will take the 3,000 mile trip together, which can be followed along on Twitter at the #HerHighway hashtag.

As with all social media events, everything gets better when people join in the fun. The more, the merrier---as events gain steam with each tweet, post, update, and interaction. Plus, we’ll have tons of pit stops along the way. At each stop, we will have great opportunities for tweet-ups live from restaurants, retail stores, service centers, and hotels. (If you know somewhere we should stop, tweet @herHighway.”

Why is this an important event? Raising awareness and providing education for women of all ages is the best defense we have against breast cancer. All women should have a mammogram at 40, even if they have no family history of breast cancer, to set a baseline for their future mammograms. Men can encourage and support the women in their lives by asking if they have scheduled their mammograms. Women can support other women by sharing their stories and making sure their friends, sisters, daughters, and mothers have mammograms when needed. Nudge the people you love!

Fact: 3 out of 5 moms blog and 9 out of 10 list Facebook as their go-to social media destination

Women are social! We learn, share, and grow through social media using Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and our own blogs. Social media will be the catalyst for a mountain of awareness based on the expertise and networks of the women in involved. For example, Ann Tran, one of the social media advisors for the Her Highway 2012 Drive, has more than 320,000 followers on Twitter, writes for the Huffington Post, and has several thousand Facebook friends. When she shares something, people listen. Ann has spent time and care building a network that listens and cares about her message. Using her network to help other women learn about early detection for breast cancer will literally save lives. Social media for social good is widely underused but can be the kick in the pants we need to get involved. How can you help others with your social media?

Fact: There are more than 2.5 millions breast cancer survivors in the United States

Using social media, blogging, and every form of networking possible, this powerful group of women will be changing lives by providing inspiration, knowledge, and hope to women along the way, some in person and other’s through the virtual world. Events in cities across the US will bring this team face to face with the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of women and whole families as the mother is typically the heart of each family. Knowledge is power and learning more about early detection for breast cancer can alleviate fear and anxiety encouraging women to complete self-exams and have mammograms can literally save lives.

How can you get involved? Follow the #HerHighway hashtag and the HerHighway blog for updates and share the information with your network. Help us get the message out to women everywhere that early detection for breast cancer is the best way to tackle this problem. Please be a part of this journey by supporting and encouraging this drive across America.


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Peg Fitzpatrick is director of marketing and social media manager for Kreussler Inc. She contributed to What the Plus! (About Google+) by Guy Kawasaki, and she is a writer and managing partner at 12 Most. Peg also created the popular My Book Club.

Twitter: @PegFitzpatrick

Google+: Peg Fitzpatrick

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