NFL Player Hopes Twitter Helps Charity Go ‘Nuttzo’

ClickZ News - Politics & Advocacy What do you get when you mix peanut butter, Twitter, and after-school activities? If you answered “a 255-pound football-playing philanthropist” (and not “a sticky keyboard”), give yourself a gold star.

Shaun Phillips, a linebacker for the San Diego Chargers, has teamed up with e-commerce firm OpenSky to create an online store to benefit after-school programs. The store will solely offer Phillips’ favorite peanut butter, Nuttzo, while he leverages his formidable Twitter following of 360,000 on a regular basis for an indefinite period of time.

OpenSky’s platform is aimed at celebrities who want to start a charitable e-commerce project – often selling high-end products. The New York-based web firm negotiates wholesale prices to create the best margins and then splits the profit with the celebrity or organizational partner.

In the case of Phillips, he’s donating his profitable share of $5 per unit sold to After School All-Stars, an organization that provides after-school programs for around 80,000 kids nationwide each year. Nuttzo, which is a health-conscious multi-nut spread, costs $13 per 16 ounce jar through the Phillips charity site.

Since launching the effort on Tuesday, the NFL player has tweeted to his base numerous times to encourage sales. Here’s one of Phillips’ tweets from Wednesday: “Only takes a few minutes to give back – CLICK HERE to BUY #Nuttzo and $5 is donated to charity-“.

According to an OpenSky spokesperson, the 29-year-old football player mostly built up his following through “a lot of contests via Twitter to increase his base and…he’s also been re-tweeted a lot by celebrity friends.”

Phillips also created a 19-second YouTube spot to promote the cause. He shot the video on Tuesday after he joined a group of San Diego-area middle school students to kick off the fundraising effort by making Nuttzo-and-jelly sandwiches for area homeless people. (See photo below.)

Nutzzo CEO Danielle LiVolsi also tweeted about the charity to her 3,000 followers. Besides the Twitter effort, no other promotions are currently planned.

Early returns from the effort were not yet available.

shaunphillips.jpg

Follow Christopher Heine on Twitter at @ChrisClickZ.

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