Communicating Across Channels - Iowa Nonprofit Summit 2013
Channels: Why, How & When
Iowa Nonprofit Summit 2013
• Who is this guy (@ctrappe) ? Where I came
from … where I’m heading
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• Share your thoughts, experiences, opinions,
• This session is on the record… You may Tweet.
You can find the slides here:
Communicating across channels
Understand the channels
Your own step-by-step guide for a channel
Formatting content based on user expectation
By stuad70 via
But, most important channel is…
But, but, but… social
• United Way of East Central Iowa
– Facebook: 1,240 followers.
– Website: Since November '11: 68,000+ people
visited website. (Not all internal )
Channels and content
• So, what does that mean: Website most
important, but have to get to all channels.
– As much as that’s possible: Some prioritization
needed: There are hundreds of social networks!
• How deep does content have to go?
• Website: Three levels of content!
– Level 1: Short and headlines … most people skim
(and visit the homepage)
– Level 2: A bit more detail: Video, transcript, etc.
– Level 3: So much more … details, details, stats, etc.
User base visualization
Your brand voice
• Before you can start, though, decide on your
brand voice…. How do you want to come
• Example for United Way in Cedar Rapids…
Serious, but fun. But not silly!
Definitely not markety!
• Avoid words like this:
– This FANTASTIC event.
– Everyone has/will have fun.
– Biggest event ever.
– The best
– The fastest
– The slickest
Take a few moments …
• How would you describe your typical customer?
• How would you describe a customer group that
you would like to engage but haven’t been able
• How would you describe the atmosphere in your
business environment? This could be in your
store, over the phone, etc.
• How would you describe how you want your
business to be described by the public?
How might you sound talking to those
customers and describing your surroundings?
Take a few moments – define voice
Example structure: This and that but not this.
Channels - Website
• Many would expect to be more formal.
(Doesn’t mean has to be too formal!)
• Needs to have all the info. (People come here
to search for it, even when it’s not public.
Example: Private event search)
• People will find your content here through
search and direct visits.
Channels - Social
• Facebook: Pictures, pictures, pictures. (Largest
critical mass, but few people engage with
• Twitter: Lots of updates.
• Pinterest: People want to be inspired
• LinkedIn: Professionals
• YouTube: Short! Especially early on.
• Don’t always link back to your website!
Channels – News releases
• Get to the point!
• Write like you are writing to the journalist’s
audience (allows copying and pasting)
• Include contact info
• When people call, answer the phone.
• Post these on your website, too!
Channels - TV
• Be available. Don’t make people wait.
• Answer questions in sound bites. “If you can’t
explain simply you don’t understand it well
enough” - Einstein
Channels - Print
Put everything in here… Just kidding!
Also use Level 1 – 3 concept.
How will people actually use it?
Channels – Emails Newsletters
• Get to the point.
• Keep it short.
• Personalize. (Volunteer newsletter replies
• Which ones did I miss?
• How do you talk on them?
Channels – Never the right answer!
Because we’ve done it
But, but, but is it making money?
• Who here has done print advertising?
How do you know that it made money?
Hello? Does it make money?
What’s the first light beer
that comes to mind?
I’ve talked enough…
• How do you measure success?
Donations, sure … community change … but
how about channel specific?
Take some time and think about this … then
share in your group and then let’s talk about
• Websites (Google Analytics)
– Visitors, pages per visit, etc.
– Klout.com (60 plus starts showing you have
– Kred Score (920+)
– Metrics, Likes, etc.
– Open rates
– Click through (if applicable)
– Donations (Email direct mail example)
Managing all these channels
• How are you going to do it?
– Easy Website system
– HootSuite.com for social scheduling
– One place to keep content!
• Produce once … distribute to different
channels based on user expectation.
I’m out …. I don’t have a camera…
Who said that? Anyone?
• Transcript posted to website
– Web searches (Adds content and keywords)
– Makes it easier for you to find quotes, etc., for
• No time for a transcript? Write down
summary/highlights/best quotes from video!
• Determine other uses (if you didn’t do that
• Could depend on topic (Examples:
KPACE, Powerball winner, campaign results)
Where to go from here…
Any questions so far?
Where to go from here…
• Storytelling class is tomorrow morning, but …
who has a story to share?
• Anyone has a story shared on all channels?
• How about one shared on a traditional
• How would you package it for others?
• Who does it?
Group exercise: Identify stories, how
to share on different channels
Did we go over time?
We didn’t go over time?
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