Kaat Mossel: A Small Act Creating Big Effect

At a networking meeting of the BrusselsNV earlier this week, I had the pleasure to listen to Jessica de Kok, the woman behind ‘Kaat Mossel’. It sounded like a Best Case Practice that had walked out of the well received book  on Social Media The Dragonfly Effect (2010). Why?

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With a clear Call For Action, little Kaat Mossel got sailing away on the waves of the ‘Ripple Effect’, raising donations for a cause, exceeding all expectations.

Kaat Mossel, an established Social Media brand in the Netherlands, started as a small call for action from one person that grew unexpectedly big in very little time.

For a campaign to raise money for a cause involving Afghanistan where her husband was serving, Jessica – an at that time ordinary mother and wife who blogged about her life – launched a people friendly and helpful alter ego online called ‘Kaat Mossel’.

As Kaat Mossel, Jennifer blogged her way forward and initiated ‘twitterveiling’ – a Twitter auction -, raising an unexpectedly large amount of donations. With a small, focussed and personal initiative, Jessica alias Kaat Mossel, sailed the waves of the Ripple Effect as described in the book The Dragonfly Effect and saw her initiative grow to such impressive level that even Dutch TV and the government took notice.

Now, Kaat Mossel is moving from a pure non-profit to a for-profit initiative, just like the organizations described in the book The Dragonfly Effect, i.e. an organization that is run with a non-profit thought, but now socially accepted as a commercial initiative for the simple reason that most of us cannot afford to run an initiative or campaign that takes the time and energy of a normal day job without any income.

Why did Kaat Mossel become a Social Media hit? Perhaps Jessica herself describes it best with the title of her book: ‘Kaat heeft een missie’ (translated: ‘Kaat has a mission’). It looks like it is the personal drive of someone to mean something to others that drives success on Social Media.

Now, looking through the eyes of traditional marketing and PR, life seems turned upside down since the arrival of Social Media. One can imagine that the lesson learned from this story is that a new type of Wanted Position and UPS is heading for the boardroom, something that reads along the lines of:

I am somebody who means something to others.

Needless to say that companies who started with a steady CSR strategy a couple of years ago are in an advanced position today to remain or become successful tomorrow.

For non-profit organizations such as NGO’s or government bodies this means that after a long period of commercialization of their behaviour, they can be themselves again.

In today’s society, starting at ‘square one’ is no longer a solo act. It’s about starting at someone else’s square too – thankfully!

If you want to see for yourself how Kaat Mossel let the four wings of The Dragonfly Effect move:

1) Here is the link to the Dutch Kaat Mossel

2) and here the link to the book The Dragofly Effect