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Understanding e campaigning


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Why social organisations get more social change from social media. How traditional campaigning organisations will have to adapt, if they want to stay relevant in a world of distributed networks, collective expertise and open-source collaboration.

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Understanding e campaigning

  1. 1. Understanding e-Campaigning Why social organisations get more social change from social media
  2. 2. Where we’re coming from... • There are 4 of us: Paul, Sally, Rosemary and Liam • We have backgrounds in youth work, social media, volunteering, local government, grant funding, facilitation, campaigning, policy work, user involvement, community development, disability rights, training, The Compact... • We have an approach, rather than a discipline: “We help organisations to be more like people.”
  3. 3. Our greatest (e-campaigning) fears! 1.Reputation/Professionalism 2.Control of message 3.Audience appropriateness 4.Return On Investment
  4. 4. Our greatest fears, debunked! 1. Reputation/Professionalism • People are talking about you anyway... • If criticism is happening on your site, you can not only debunk it, but make it a positive! • ‘Professionalism’ can still be informal • Ignoring people is the worst thing you can do for your image/perception
  5. 5. “Most customers that complain online do NOT want to ‘hurt’ your company. They just want you to listen to them, and help them with their problem. If you’ll do that, you’ll often flip a detractor into an evangelist.” - Mack Collier, ‘Think Negative Comments/Reviews Online Hurt Your Company? Guess Again’
  6. 6. Our greatest fears, debunked! 2. Control of message • ‘If a bank robber was caught wearing your t- shirt, would you blame the t-shirt?’ • – 95%-98% of user commentary was positive... other 2%-5% was ‘policed’ by the online community • You often have more control online, than if you put hard copies of a letter/statement into the public domain (via admin controls)
  7. 7. Our greatest fears, debunked! 3. Audience appropriateness • 85% of the UK is online • 64% have a social network profile • There are over 500 million Facebook users • Avg. monthly social network time: 6h7m54s • 37% of all Facebook users are 35+ (19% 45+) ...It’s not universal, but it’s changing VERY fast!
  8. 8. Our greatest fears, debunked! 4. Return On Investment • This is still very hard to track (beyond technical numbers) • Greenpeace’ GreenMyApple: – 50,000 letters to Steve Jobs, Apple CEO – 10,000 newsletter sign-ups – 4000+ blogs about the campaign – Apple corporate policy change • Social networking is networking, but online... • If you wait for proven ROI to use social media, others may assume the worst while you’re not… ‘Twenty Pound Notes’ Image courtesy of
  9. 9. "Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted." - Albert Einstein
  10. 10. Do you have a GOOD experience of social media? • Kept you in touch with an old mate? • Learned something new? • Shared something valuable with others? • Made new connections?
  11. 11. Is yours a ‘social organisation’? • Conversational communications • Trust in individual autonomy • Collective expertise • Risk embrace Boss You Me Us Assistant Manager Assistant Manager
  12. 12. How is a ‘social organisation’ different from a traditional organisation? Broadcast vs Conversation Broadcast • One-way • Single perspective • Controlled • Formal • Consistent Conversation • Multi-directional • Many perspectives • Open • Informal • Erratic ‘Tin can phone’ Image Creative Commons Kit Cowan (K!T on Flickr)
  13. 13. How is a ‘social organisation’ different from a traditional organisation? Control vs Autonomy Control • ‘Father knows best’ • Strict hierarchy • Secrecy • Compliance Autonomy • We are all leaders • Loose network • Openness • Trust
  14. 14. How is a ‘social organisation’ different from a traditional organisation? Individual experts vs Collective expertise Individual Experts • Experience=Ability • Specialisation • Top-down • Expensive • Exclusive Collective Expertise • Perspective=Ability • Generalisation • ‘In-the-mix’ • Costs varied • Inclusive
  15. 15. How is a ‘social organisation’ different from a traditional organisation? Risk management vs Risk embrace Risk Management • Risk=negative • Cautious • Efficient • Reactive • Consistent Risk Embrace • Risk=positive • Uncertain • Messy • Proactive • Innovative
  16. 16. How social is your organisation? 1. Practices two-way, conversational communications, inside and outside its walls? 2. Supports autonomous leadership to emerge from all levels? 3. Encourages broad, open, equal involvement in organisational decisions? 4. Trusts staff to take risks and try new ways of campaigning (without reprisal)?
  17. 17. Q: What does this have to do with social media? A: Social media does this stuff already – our organisations can learn from it!
  18. 18. democracy, people + ‘web 2.0’ ... now we talk to each other to get information
  19. 19. ...Or put another way... Image can be found at: David Wilcox’s models...
  20. 20. why are campaigners using new technology? • to reach greater numbers • e.g. – MySociety, MPs expenses vote • to involve your supporters • e.g. – Greenpeace, GreenMyApple • to engage a younger audience • e.g. – The Scouts Association, Rain Tax Campaign • to save money • e.g. – BullyingUK • to increase speed of communication •e.g. – / /
  21. 21. • The ‘If you build it, they will come’ philosophy • Using tools as an ‘add-on’, not as part of a broader strategy • Not understanding supporters’ or targets’ relationship with technology • Disconnect from other campaign activities • Treating social media like a megaphone common pitfalls of online campaigns
  22. 22. • Build a strong database • Brief, focussed communication • Make it personal • Coordinate online and ‘offline’ activism • Don’t obsess over the numbers! • Treat it like a good conversation tips for new ‘e-campaigners’ Image Creative Commons used courtesy of thoth92 on Flickr
  23. 23. What makes a good conversation? • Honesty • Emotion • Opinion ...And talking a fair share of bollocks!
  24. 24. Trust • It’s okay to make mistakes • You’ve been hired/you hired them to do a job • Things are too fast for traditional sign-offs Photo by Joe Nangle via Flickr
  25. 25. Good relationships are good for business! The Networking Principle: ‘We may not know exactly how or when our new connections will be useful, but we understand and cherish the value they provide to our work.’ Q: ...Should this be exclusive to senior management, or should the connections, like the skills and experiences generally, of all staff be seen this way?
  26. 26. Case Study: ‘Top’-of-the-Sector Tweeters • Peter Wanless, CEO, Big Lottery Fund • Toby Blume, CEO, Urban Forum • Karl Wilding, Head of Research, NCVO • Gloria Charles, CEO, Kids First
  27. 27. Case Study Peter Wanless, CEO, Big Lottery Fund
  28. 28. Case Study Toby Blume, CEO, Urban Forum
  29. 29. Case Study Karl Wilding, Head of Research, NCVO
  30. 30. Case Study Gloria Charles, CEO, Kids First
  31. 31. Case Study: An organic culture shift... Step 1: A few staff Tweet, managers clamp- down, punishments doled-out. Step 2: Tweeting continues – underground – and gradually expands amongst staff. Step 3: A more influential (w/ CEO) staff inc. Twitter @ big event. Press coverage ensues. Step 4: CEO tells EVERYONE to Tweet! Most ignore. Some set-up accounts, then ignore. Step 5: A healthier balance is struck...
  32. 32. Discussion: How can we share these ideas within our organisations? • What’s the role of the ‘top’ in a structure without a ‘top’ and ‘bottom’? • Do you need the technology to initiate the culture shift? • What can you personally change? • What would get your boss on Twitter?
  33. 33. Jenga! • Every block is a block to your campaign utilising social media better • Before you remove it, you have to identify the block and suggest an alternative approach • You can’t remove blocks from the top • You want a slimmer tower, not a collapsed one!
  34. 34. Your homework! 1. Join Twitter (if you haven’t already) 2. Find everyone else from the workshop 3. Share what you’ve learned via Twitter 4. Use the ‘hashtag’ #ConcreteSolutions Image Creative Commons used courtesy of apdk on Flickr
  35. 35. Feedback: Your 3 ‘Somethings’ for us 1. Something I liked 2. Something I would change 3. Something I’ll do differently as a result
  36. 36. Thanks for being social! Liam Barrington-Bush email: web: twitter: @hackofalltrades mobile: +44 (0) 7775732383