The Dragon Fly Effect Review

I just finished reading The Dragonfly Effect and I recommend it to anyone who is interested in harnessing the power of social media to make a change in the world. The book is a great introduction to the power and influence of social media and it discusses several real world examples of the impact of the effective use of social media.

I really enjoyed the abundant use of relevant examples that were used to illustrate points throughout the book. For example, the book talks about the story of Sameer Bhatia and Vinay Chakravarthy who used social media to register over 24 000 South Asians into the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) registry in 11 weeks which enabled them to find bone marrow matches to aid them in their battle against leukemia. The book also talks about Barack Obama’s effective social media campaign that some believe played a key component of his election. The book also talks about the effectiveness of strategies employed by Groupon and other successful companies that have harnessed social media.

One of the most touching real world examples that was brought up in the book was the story of Alex Scott who was diagnosed with neuroblastoma (an aggressive form of childhood cancer) before her first birthday. At the age of 4 she decided to start a lemonade stand that would donate all of her profits to charity. She set up a stand and the 50-cent price tag was ignored by most customers who commonly donated $5, $10 and $20. Alex raised more than $2000 from her first lemonade stand but the spread of her story inspired others to set up their own lemonade stands for her cause. Alex and her family appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show and the Today Show where her story was shared with millions of people. She set the goal of raising $1 million to donate towards cancer research and she reached that goal before she reached the age of eight years old. Sadly, Alex succumbed to cancer at the age of eight years old. As of January 2010 Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF), which was set up by Alex’s parents in her name, has raised more than $27 million and donated to more than 100 research projects at nearly 50 institutions in the US.

One of the biggest messages that I took away from this example and this book is the importance of connecting with your audience on an emotional level. This is the most effective way to motivate people to identify with you and your cause. It is truly incredible how much of an impact Alex had despite the fact that she only lived to the age of eight. Just imagine what is possible with the time and resources you posses. If Alex could inspire a movement that has raised more than $27 million dollars to fight Cancer in the eight years she lived, the possibilities seem endless.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *