Thunderclap is a tool that allows people to donate a social media status at a specific time. When the organizer reaches a threshold of sign-ups, the Thunderclap is activated and all who signed on send a message at the same time.
Thunderclap has different pricing plans from free (the free plan can take up to 3 days to have your message approved, plan accordingly) to paid plans ranging from $45-$500 per campaign. The paid plans additional features that may make them more attractive to your organization.
Illinois Pension Theft Bill
The Illinois Federation of Teachers (IFT) used a Thunderclap to great effect in 2013 as part of the social media component of their campaign against SB1 – the pension theft bill.
For about a week prior to the bill, IFT started tagging all of our SB1 content with the hashtag #PensionTheft. They forwarded this information to every listserv and Facebook group they participated in and encouraged online activists to spread the word.
About 5-7 unique pieces of #PensionTheft content were posted across their social media channels per day. The crescendo of this campaign was on December 2, 2013 between 7-9PM when they organized a Twitter storm, which coincided with a Thunderclap action they organized.
IFT set a threshold of 100 participants (their goal was 200) and had a total of 738 sign-ups. The messages were released at 8PM and all of this action made #PensionTheft go viral.
For several hours on the night of December 2nd, SB1 was the number one topic on Twitter in the Chicago region.
This campaign brought more people to IFT social media channels. They were able to increase their online engagement and capacity for future engagement through this campaign.
Their average attainment of new Facebook “likes” increased by 400% over the course of the campaign. Their average post reach increased by 320% and total number of people engaged with their Facebook page increased by 86%.
On Twitter, their #PensionTheft content received 10-20 times their average reach. The increase in mentions and retweets yielded a spike in followers. They increased from 2,000 followers at the beginning of the campaign to 2,542.
Although the bill passed, they engaged members and supporters through the campaign and increased their capacity to keep them informed.