In a year in which we [CruiseDeals.com] gave away several cruise vacations using Facebook and Twitter…. For many, last week’s give away will be the most memorable. Last week, we gave away a Royal Caribbean 3-night Bahamas Cruise for the second time because the original winner, Linda Orellano could no longer go due to her cancer returning and spreading.
Linda has had a rough year with her home being hit by a tornado in April, fighting cancer, and raising a 14 daughter on her own.
When Linda asked us if we could give her cruise away to someone to enjoy, we quickly decided to use the giveaway as an opportunity to raise money for Linda’s Christmas and gas money for the 160 mile drive to receive cancer treatments.
On Monday, 12.12.2011, I wrote a blog post telling Linda’s story and announcing the 3-night cruise re-giveaway. From there it became a huge team effort to raise $1000 in 5 days.
Linda’s story was shared 1000s of times on Twitter and Facebook. Checkout http://facebook.com/cruisedeals to see how supportive everyone was on Facebook. Sweepstakes bloggers @ostmega @sweepsmama & @CocoaCali jumped in to help spread Linda’s story to their readers with very thoughtful blog posts.
Thanks to all the sharing, Linda’s story inspired 71 people to donate a total of $1000. When we set the goal of $1000, I was unsure if we could raise it in 5 days. I’d never seen a giveaway tied to a fundraiser that did not require a donation to enter. No one was required to donate…but thanks to a team effort, we hit the goal!
Oh yeah… Who won the 3-night Royal Caribbean Bahamas Cruise? The Lucky winner is Cathy Haynes. She heard about the cruise giveaway via Facebook and is excited to take her husband on their first cruise vacation!
A Special thanks to all of our friends on Facebook and Twitter who helped spread the message! It meant a lot to me for us to be able to a little something to help Linda & her daughter have a Merry Christmas.
For those of you on Twitter, I recommend connecting with people who care about others enough to jump in to help those in need. I recommend being one of those people who take action… not only Retweets but also donates, volunteers time, writes blog posts etc. Here is a Twitter list of people who took action and help make #LindasCruise a success: http://twitter.com/#!/CruiseDeals/lindascruise/members
To Royal Caribbean Cruise line for allowing us to re-giveaway this cruise in order to raise money for Linda.
To the whole team at CruiseDeals.com who got behind this effort immediately – especially Sean Pfost, CruiseDeals.com’s super talented web guy for getting the landing page up and running in 2 hours. Kevin Weisner, CruiseDeals.com’s VP, for always allowing us to experiment with social media – which gave us a platform to be able to do some good for Linda.
When are competitors not competitors? When thanks to Twitter, they are also good friends. Special thanks to Lara Nicotra [Liberty Travel], CruisewithMike, and SimonTravels for helping spread Linda’s Story and donating – putting friendship and compassion over competition.
As always, I’m very thankful for the support from the #CLT community on Twitter & Facebook. Blessed to have the hometown support from folks like @ScottHepburn, @BillVoth @TamelaRich @LeliaKate, @TheClothier, Southern Spark etc.
On Facebook, there were 100s of people sharing Linda’s Story. Facebook is a little harder to track who is sharing – But, Romona N. was very inspiring… she commented that she wanted to donate, but could not because of budget reasons. Then commented a few hours later that she figured out some things she could do without and donated.
Linda asked me to add this:
“This is more than I could have ever imagined; all I was concerned about was my Daughter getting a few things she really wanted for Christmas. Thank you to Rich Tucker and Cruisedeals and Thanks and God Bless to all who donated.”
Three awesome blog posts that were written out of kindness:
I’m fully aware that this $1000 is not going to cure Linda’s cancer… But, I do know that it helps her to know that she is in so many people thoughts and prayers. And thanks to a online community, she’ll enjoy less stress over the Christmas holiday. That’s what Christmas is all about.[box]Like Cruise Giveaways? We have plenty in store for 2012, Subscribe to CruiseSource to stay in the know[/box]
Post written by Rich Tucker, Biz Dev at CruiseDeals.com & Founder of CruiseSource.us. Rich is regularly involved with or sharing innovative social good projects on Twitter. Follow Rich’s personal account get involved: @RichTucker