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E-Metrics: Embrace the Data, Change the World

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  • In the next 40 minutes, we are going to share a few stories and ideas from our new book, “Measuring the Networked Nonprofit: Using Data to Change the World,” – we’re very excited because we have been working on together for over a year and it was finally released last week. We came to work on this book with very different experiences and expertise.
  • Worked in the nonprofit sector for over 33 years. Had a front row seat at the creation of a field – nonprofit technology – use of technology for mission-driven work. I’m a master trainer so I get to travel around the work and work with changemakers on how to use the tools for social change or mission driven work. Most recently, have designed and delivered curriculum for nonprofits to become networked nonprofit – Middle East, Africa, India, etc. There are wicked problems in the world -- I’m passionate about social change and strongly believe that two of the skills that nonprofits need to embrace to solve them. Also a share of the royalities are going
  • And there were other differences, KD is a cat person
  • Beth is a dog person
  • So, in the book, there are stories from animal welfare charities – an equal number of cat and dog shelters
  • I’m not a measurement expert and I used to think that measurement was the equivalent of Darth Vadar running after me with a radioactive light sabre .. And would be like that dog ..
  • But I knew that KD Paine – the goddess of measurement – had very valuable and practical insights to share about measurement -- I’ve become a convert … along the way she showed how to use measurement to ensure that we made our deadline ...
  • I was little worry about making our deadline since we were collaborating and creating something new … we had 9 months and 14 chapters and 65,000 words. But KD showed how to use measurement to keep us on track …We had a 10 stage writing process – from 0 to 10 (click) With 0 not started yet and 10 perfection that we knew we’d never reach (click)We worked with a fantastic editor, Bill Paarlberg … so one author would start, the other author add/revise and the editor would smooth out the styles ..From 0 to 3 was the first crappy draft .. We rinsed and repeated two more times ..A work flow that went from first crappy draft to perfection never reached
  • This was reflected on our dashboard … red meant writer’s block or other trouble and green was in the writing groveWe could see progress along the way ..
  • And having a measurement process helped us make our deadline ..Lesson learned: Don’t ever sign a book contract that has a final manuscript delivery on January 2nd!
  • The central message of the book is: If you want to change the world: Be Networked, Use Measurement, and Make Sense of Your Data!
  • That’s what nonprofits need to do – connect with their networks to create on the ground change. …Let’s broaden the lens …The leading edge of social change is increasingly network-centric. Collaboration, coordination, and working in networks are becoming the new normal, as leaders across sectors work to move the needle on today’s most pressing problems. Individuals and organizationsare taking increasing advantage of technology’s ability to facilitate and expand their impact through connection, coordination, and collaboration. Using data to understand what is working or not.What are the skills?
  • For nonprofits, to be successful means leading with a network mindset … that’s an emerging leadership style that characterized by greater openess, transparency, collective action AND achieve impact. And that means using measurement and data for decisiono-making …
  • Nonprofits are often slow to change and it helps having a framework that lays out the practices in baby steps .. And we provide this in the book “Crawl, Walk, Run, Fly” -- which lays out the steps for incremental change and is very detailed , of course, about measurement – that KD will explain in detail in a minute.
  • One of the reasons why I wanted to co-author this book with the goddess of measurement is that the nonprofit sector has some challenges in embracing measurement …. We wanted to create a handbook that help nonprofits get past these challenges .. .and approach measurement like many of you do – being data informed.
  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/firecloak/6774418629/sizes/l/in/photostream/
  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/hockeyshooter/4132732687/
  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/theimagegroup/369893824/
  • There’s another important organizational skill - data-informed this describes agile, responsive, and intelligent nonprofitsthat are better able to succeed in a rapidly changing environment and can fuel networks of networks. DoSomething.org has a big hairy social change goal:  To harnesses teenage energy and unleash it on causes teens care about by launching a national campaign per week.  The call to action is always something that has a real impact and does not require money, an adult, or a car.   Their measurable goal is to get 5 million active teen members engaged in social change campaigns by 2015.    Their use of social media, mobile, and data all strategically selected and use to reach that goal.They are a networked nonprofit with a data informed culture – and it started at the top with their board and advisors ..Reid Hoffman and DjPatil – “A Data Scientist” – have advised the CEO – Nancy Lublin – not only what infrastructure is needed to collect and make sense of data, but how she as the leader can’t rely on hunches – decisions – have to be informed by data.
  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/mkrigsman/3428179614/DoSomething has two data analyst positions on staff .. And they aren’t sitting in the corner playing with their spreadsheetsWhile a big part of their job is to become the stewards of the dashboard, they work with staff – so that making sense of data Is not an adhoc process, but one of continous improvement of the programs. The data analysts work collaboratively with staff to help them apply and understand their data.
  • One of their organizational mantra is “Spend More Time Thinking About The Data, Less On Collecting ItPregnancy Text” Campaign featured on their quarterly dashboard.    This clever sex education campaign is an updated version of the teen pregnancy education program where young people carried eggs around and pretend they are babies.   It was a text campaign where teens opted in to receive texts on their mobile phones from the “baby.”     Once they joined (and they could share it with their friends). they received regular annoying text messages at all hours from the “baby”  that poops, cries, and needs their immediate attention.The team at DoSomething.org uses data to base the program design, key performance indicators and a hypothesis to be tested.    They looked at  survey data from the National Campaign:  nearly 9 in 10 (87%) young people surveyed also say that it would be much easier for teens to delay sexual activity and avoid teen pregnancy if they were able to have more open, honest conversations about these topics with their parents and/or friends.    So, success of this campaign would be mean that participants talk with their family or friends about the issue and delay sexual activity.The basic design had those who signed up challenge their friends to take care of a text baby either by (1) going to DoSomething website and selecting 5 friends to challenge or (2) after receiving a text from DoSomething (sent to DoSomething’s 300k mobile subscribers) would opt to challenge friends after reading a quick stat on US teen pregnancy.   Participants that accepted the challenge would then start receiving texts the following morning from the text-baby.  After completing the challenge user were prompted to send it to their own friends.DoSomething.org also followed up with 5k of the users with a text-based survey to measure impact.Once defining success and identifying the right data collect, here’s some of the insights they gleaned  according to Nancy Lublin, CEO of DoSomething and Jeffrey Bladt:SMS as a platform:  They are monitoring engagement per communication channel and it has revealed SMS to be 30xs more powerful for getting their users to take action as compared to emailChallenging 5 friends: we’ve tested various group sizes for SMS experience and have found the a group of 6 (1 alpha inviting friends) leads to the highest overall engagementResearch Based Messaging:  The general messaging for the campaign was based on survey findings that found (1) big scare tactics (e.g. getting pregnant = not going to college) we not as effective as highlighting who being a teen parent changes daily life (e.g can’t go to the movies because baby sitter cancelled); (2) a CDC report that found: “The impact of strong pregnancy prevention messages directed to teenagers has been credited with the [recent] teen birth rates decline.A/B Testing: They pre-tested different messages and frequency of sending the messages to smaller test groups of  teens to optimize the number of messages the baby would send during the day, as well as the content.   They ended up doubling the frequency and rewording several interactions as well as building in a response system (so the baby would respond if  teen texted an unsolicited response).  The insights from these tests pushed up engagement and likelihood of forwarding at the end.Impact:  They did a survey to measure this.   1 in 2 teens said that taking the Pregnancy Text made it more likely that they would talk about the issue of teen pregnancy with their family and friends.As you can see from the above insights,  DoSomething just not gather and analyze topline data:101,444 people took part in the campaign with 100,000 text-babies delivered171,000 unsolicited incoming messages, or 1 every 20 seconds for the duration of the campaign. During the initial launch period (first 2 weeks), a new text message was received every 10 seconds.For every 1 direct sign-up, DoSomething gained 2.3 additional sign-ups from forward to a friend functionality.  The viral coefficient was between 0.60 and 0.70 for the campaign.1 in 4 (24%) of teens could not finish a day with their text-baby (texted a stop word to the baby)DoSomething.org uses its data to continuously improve programs, develop content, and shape campaign strategies. So DoSomething.org wants its staff to spend more of its brainpower thinking about the data, rather than collecting it. To ensure that this happens, DoSomething.org’s Data Analyst Bob Filbin’s job is more than programming formulas in Excel spreadsheets. Says Filbin, “One of the biggest barriers in nonprofits is finding the time to collect data, the time to analyze, and the time to act on it. Unless someone is put in charge of data, and it’s a key part of their job description, accelerating along the path towards empowered data-informed culture is going to be hard, if not impossible.”
  • Fail Fest And Pink Boas: Don’t Be Afraid To FailDoSomething.org doesn’t use its data to pat itself on the back or make the staff feel good. Lublin notes that they’re not afraid of failure. They hold regular “Fail Fest” meetings, where each person on staff has to present a campaign or program failure. They share three things they learned about themselves and three things the organization learned. To remove the stigma from failure, Lublin says, “We have to wear pink boas when we present.” http://www.flickr.com/photos/ruminatrix/2734602916/in/faves-cambodia4kidsorg/
  • The “Crawl, Walk, Run, Fly” Maturity of Social Media practice framework is in Beth’s next book, Measuring the Networked Nonprofit. We used to help us design the program, determine process outcomes, and help us evaluate our progress.Explain modelPhotos: Runhttp://www.flickr.com/photos/clover_1/2647983567/Flyhttp://www.flickr.com/photos/micahtaylor/5018789937/
  • Becoming Data-Informed: Change Is Easy With Baby StepsChanging an organization’s culture to a more data-informed approach must begin with baby steps. While it does not have to be difficult to orchestrate, it does need to start from the top. Unless senior management can agree on the definitions of success and how they will be measured, you can waste a tremendous amount of time accumulating data but not using it. In Chapter 4, we describe the basic steps of any measurement program and discuss how to set up a measurement pilot program. Chapter 5 discusses how to identify the value of success. Getting started on the path to becoming a data-informed nonprofit is a matter of having some important internal conversations. It is not just about having new inspiration about measurement or working with new tools; it means thinking differently about the organization and how it works.Begin at the End: Discuss and Identify ResultsIf your organization doesn’t know exactly what you’re going to measure, you can’t become data-informed. Unless you have a discussion upfront of what success looks like, you’ll end up collecting data, but it won’t help you make decisions. You will waste your time. So begin at the end by carefully identifying desired outcomes. Don’t be afraid of a bit of healthy disagreement. The best measurement programs are borne of—and benefit from—lively conversations about what really matters to the organization and who can “claim credit” for what. You need to keep your “mission” hat on and keep the conversation focused on the ultimate goals of the organization. Just keep repeating, it’s not about “credit”—it’s about achieving the mission. You will also want to manage expectations: What is realistic to expect given your current investment in social media, or compared to peer organizations? What do short-term, medium, and longer-term results look like?You might need to bring in an outside consultant to facilitate a meeting to help get consensus on what you want to measure or clarity on results. Or you may need to bring in a measurement expert to help you clarify what you want to measure and why. This doesn’t have to be expensive. For example, as we discuss in Chapter 8, the Analytics Exchange helped the American Leadership Forum by supplying an analytics volunteer to help create a framework and system for gathering data. Become a Curator of MetricsIf you are the person responsible for implementing social media for your organization, either part time or as your whole job, you need to become what John Lovett defines as a “Curator of Metrics” in his book Social Media Metrics Secrets.This is someone, like Carie Lewis from the Humane Society whom we introduced you to do in Chapter 1, who knows the difference between different types of metrics and ensures that her organization is using data in an intelligent way. A curator of metrics knows how to help guide their organization into choosing the right metrics, and knows how to report insights in a way that connects them to organizational goals.Use Experiments To Make The Case To EvolveOne way to evolve into a data-informed organization is through implementing a series of social media measurement experiments, as described below and in Chapter 4. Each one needs to have solid metrics, and should be designed to provide results that will help you make the case to evolve. Keep the end in mind when agreeing on how experiments will be structured, run, and measured. The experiments should not be willy-nilly, but help you develop and test your strategies and tactics – and lead the way to best practices. Take a Baby Step: My First Data Collection ProjectTo get started, select a project, event, small campaign, or program that is a high priority on your organization’s work plan for the year, that incorporates social media, and that you can apply a couple of good metrics to. Be mindful of other organizational deadlines that may divert energy and focus from this important first baby step. You might find it difficult to set aside quality time to focus on it. Don’t try to measure every objective or collect all potential relevant data. Make it easy to manage. You should also have a very clear idea about what you want to learn. Keep in mind that you are going to take your report and use it to make the case for a more comprehensive measurement program. It’s important to make sure that anyone who is going to use the data, or sit in a meeting and review the data, buys into your metrics. That could be the Executive Director, a program manager, the board of trustees, or other people in your department. If there are many different decision makers you may need to do a formal survey to make sure that everyone ends up on the same page. Sara Thomas, who handles social media for the Ocean Conservancy, says, “It was really useful to bring in my entire department on the effort rather than working solo on the project. This helped with buy-in.”Learn from Your ResultsOnce you collect your data, analyze it and understand how it can help inform decisions. Make sure you educate through examples. Show how adding a data-informed approach to your social media or all media or programs can avoid ineffective campaigns and increase audience satisfaction.More importantly, you don’t just need to develop discipline around collecting data, what you want is the discipline to look at what you’ve collected and generate insights. That requires reflection, not just counting.Doing a measurement pilot will help create the discipline of stepping back from whirlwind of social media tactical implementation, but also wrestle with larger questions about how social media fits into an organization’s overall efforts. Which vehicles and channels gain us the most traction? How should we adjust our workload internally to reflect those results? How are our social media activities helping us meet our overall strategic goals? How are our efforts using social media supporting our programs?Reflecting does not have to be a private activity. It can be done in connected, transparent ways. The organization’s blog or website can be a place to share lessons learned with readers, and ask them for their feedback and suggestions as well. The result: a powerful way to learn and improve over time.ConclusionTo start the shift to a data-informed culture, you must begin with small incremental steps with the full support of leadership. It’s important to think big, looking at key results, but since many outcomes deal with long-term changes, you can’t get there overnight, nor can your organization transform its culture overnight. Keep the steps small and manageable. As your organization’s culture begins to shift, then when you present reports on social media activities, you get better questions from your executive director or board. You don’t get asked how many fans do we have or what does that mean? You get questions that help you Kanter, Beth. (October, 2011) Are You A Curator of Metrics? [Blog post]. Retrieved from http://www.bethkanter.org/curator-metrics/Thomas, Sara, private conference call peer learning group with David and Lucile Packard grantees with Beth Kanter, September, 2011
  • Transcript

    • 1. Embrace Data, Change the World KD Paine and Beth Kanter E-Metrics Conference Keynote October 2, 2012
    • 2. Katie Delahaye Paine Chairman & Founder KDPaine & Partners Chief Marketing Officer News Group International kdpaine@kdpaine.com www.kdpaine.com http:/kdpaine.blogs.comFellow and Board Member: Society for New Communications Research IPR Measurement Commission
    • 3. Beth Kanter: Master Trainer, Blogger, Author, ChangeMaker
    • 4. Measuring Completion Against Deadline….. 0…1…2…3…4…5…6…7…8…9…10
    • 5. If you want to change the world: Be Networked,Use Measurement, and Make Sense of Your Data!
    • 6. Social Change is Increasingly Network-Centric
    • 7. A Network Mindset: A Leadership Style• Openness, transparency, decentralized decision-making, and collective action.• Listening and cultivating organizational and professional networks to achieve impact• Leadership through active participation.• Sharing control of decision-making• Blending networking with strategy• Data-Informed culture
    • 8. Crawl, Walk, Run, Fly Model: Networked NonprofitPracticesThemes Categories IndicatorsINTERNAL CULTURE Networked Mindset Institutional Support Communications Strategy CAPACITY Hours Expertise Practices Channels Differ for MEASUREMENT Analysis Tools Crawl, Walk, Adjustment Run, FlyEXTERNAL LISTENING Brand Monitoring Relationship Mapping Influencer Research ENGAGEMENT Ladder of Engagement Responsiveness CONTENT Integration Social Optimization NETWORK Networking and Networking Building Collaboration with Partners Social Fundraising
    • 9. The Five Stages of MeasurementAcceptance in the Nonprofit Sector Data Delight Informed Confusion Fear Denial
    • 10. Denial I don’t have the time to measure.
    • 11. Fear What if my strategy or program doesn’t show success?
    • 12. Confusion I know I should measure our social media and network, but not sure what or how?
    • 13. Hey check outDelight these cool charts and graphics!
    • 14. Data Informed Successful networks and social media start with measurement
    • 15. Data-Informed Culture: It starts from the top! Do Something.org
    • 16. Tear down those silos and walls around data …
    • 17. More time think about that the data, then collect it
    • 18. Why did it fail?What did we learn?What insights can use nexttime around?DoSomething.Org’s Fail Fest
    • 19. Becoming A Networked Nonprofit: Maturity of Practice Model – Data Informed Crawl Walk Run FlyLacks consistent data Data collection Data from multiple Org Wide KPIs collection consistent but not sources shared No reporting or Data not linked to System and structure for Organizational synthesis results, could be wrong data collection Dashboard with data different views, sharingDecisions based on gut Rarely makes decisions Discussed at staff Data visualization, to improve meetings, decisions reporting, formal made using it reflection process
    • 20. Advice for Nonprofits: Becoming Data-Informed:Change Is Easier With Baby Steps• Begin at the end – discuss and identify results• Curator of metrics• Use experiments to help evolve• Get started with a small data collection project that is high priority in your organization• Make time to learn from results
    • 21. Thank You! Tweet Up at 6 PM at Tamo Bar Buy the Book and Give It To A Nonprofit!http://www.measurenetworkednonprofit.org