A Movember warning for our clients…

We’re sure you’re probably already aware of Movember, the annual moustache-based fundraising event which raises funds and awareness for prostate and testicular cancer and mental health.

It requires volunteers to sport facial hair for the month of November, in return for donations prompted by the attempts to model a “Tom Selleck”, “Burt Reynolds” or for the UK, a “Des Lynam”.

If you’re a client or prospective client, we wanted to warn you that Dan is taking part this year for the first time in a while. And so far it appears his moustache growing and grooming talents have not improved

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So if you have any face-to-face meetings or Skype calls etc with us this month, please do not be alarmed.

But please do feel free to be amused, suggest facial hair styling techniques, and donate to a good cause.

One word for today.

And the word is:

Twestival.

Targeting any male readers of my blog…

There are two reasons for mentioning Movember (or reminding you if you’re already heard about it).

The first is that 35,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer every year in the UK alone. It tends to affect men over 50, but can affect younger men (although rare), and if you want to read some of the details of what it’s like, blogger Jeff Jarvis recently shared his experiences.

The second reason, which isn’t quite as important, is that it’s a great example of something which has spread from a few blokes in Australia to a word-of-mouth and social phenomenon across the globe. Because it’s funny, in a good cause, and easy to get involved with just by growing a moustache, which then becomes a walking billboard effectively.

And if something is easy and fun it’s pretty hard not to support isn’t it?

So stop reading this, and get over to www.movember.com. Now.

Great opportunity for start-ups at the London Twestival

The Twestival event is now a global phenomenon, but as any event grows it can be harder and harder for smaller companies to get involved – which is particularly relevant if you’re dealing with the Twitter ecosystem.

Which is why it’s great that Twestival Local London recognise this and are offering a sponsor slot for less – as long as you’re company, social enterprise or organisation with 6 or less employees, you have a Twitter account and you’re able to run a fun activity at the event on September 10th.

The best activity gets the chance to run their activity and engage with up to 1200 Twestivalees and press people for £300.

The deadline is 11pm on Monday, August 31, so submit your Twestival activity now! And hopefully I’ll see you there…

Making charity happen via Twitter

Twitter marketer and celebrity Laura Fitton (@Pistachio) has come up with a great charity campaign over Christmas, having realised that just $2 from each of her followers would mean $25,000 – enough for a water project for a school or hospital by Charity Water.

The impetus for this is the fact that 5,000 children die every day from the lack of clean drinking water.

And as a bonus, if $10,000 plus gets raised, it’ll be matched by Tipjoy and Betaworks. Plus all fees are being waived for micropayments via Twitter for this case by Tipjoy.

But Laura puts it far more passionately and eloquently than I can (plus there are more details on the charity, payments, and even an easy form to use), so

If that isn’t enough, Squidoo is also giving money to charity – Every time you tweet a message from the list of 21 charities, it’s a vote which means $1 is donated to that charity (one per person, per day), up to a maximum of $30,000.

Both might be slightly overshadowing my own Twitter charity pledge – @digitalmaverick and myself are racing to 2000 followers, with the loser doing a charity forfeit. Plus I’m giving £20 to a charity chosen by my 2000th follower!

I need your help for a good cause…

I’ve been issued with a Twitter challenge – @digitalmaverick and I are competing to reach 2000 followers, with the loser performing a charitable forfeit…

And in the spirit of the challenge, I’ll also give 2000 pence to the charity chosen by my 2000th follower…

So follow www.twitter.com/badgergravling

Not long left to make a contribution to Tweetgiving

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Due to the complications of time differences and my dodgy maths, there should still be time to check out and contribute to Tweetgiving, which is aiming to raise $10,000 for a new classroom in Tanzania, and is almost there – but the project only runs until 12pm (EST) on Thursday, November 27, 2008 so get in quick.

If you want to read a great post about the idea – and also what makes it such a great campaign, take a look at the always interesting and readable David Armano – What Brands Can Learn From A Turkey.

And if you want to donate without visiting the Tweetgiving site, then you’ve still got an option:

Buy some top social media experts at bargain prices…

And it’s all for charity.

Social media type Jennifer Leggio is not only running the Nike Women’s Marathon for charity – she’s also persuaded some top social media figures to auction their skills to raise money for Team in Training, the fundraising arm of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

And you could get some real value by bidding for yourself or your company. Names on the block include Chris Brogan, Joseph Jaffe, Geoff Livingston, Aaron Strout, and Greg Verdino.

If you don’t recognise their names, there is a short bio on the link above. I’ll add in the appropriate blog links in detail when I’m not sat on a train…