At the end of the day, social media also helps nonprofits specifically by allowing them to achieve their organizational mission in a number of possible ways:--recruiting new supporters--building awareness around programs--mobilizing activists--possibly even raising funds
Above are the different channels which generations think are appropropriate ways to solicit them. It’s interesting to note that social media is seen as almost as appropriate a way to reach them as email – something you are probably all already doing.
Note the high social media usage even in the more mature demographic segments.
Identify your Objectives Common objectives include: Gain a better understanding of what the perception of our organization and mission is amongst our supporters. Build awareness for our organization through our most passionate supporters. Be more responsive to our supporters, on a local or individual level. Generate a collection of reusable content by empowering supporters to create. Be more effective at driving current event driven response amongst our followers. Establish the organization as a thought leader and primary source of information of a given topic. Drive more traffic to your website.Evaluate Your ObjectivesThe objectives should align with overall organization objectives, if the results are to be seen as valuableThe objectives must be something that can be measured, so that both progress and success can be recognized. Evaluate Your OrganizationThis usually breaks down into two parts: Culture and CapacityCulture: Determine if your organization afraid of losing control of the message? If they are, you have to get past that first. Once that is done, assess your readiness to respond to feedback, both negative and positive. Go so far as to brainstorm scenarios and formulate a response policy and process outlined and communicated for each scenario. Ken can add some commentary here.Capacity: While many of the social media tools are free, the time to use them is not. Try to analyze how much time you can allot to managing your social media efforts. Look at similar orgs doing it and ask them about the time they spend. Also, plan on frontloading the time needed to make your plans work. You’ll need extra time to both get it right and get other people involved.Evaluate Your AudienceThere are three parts to this. Based on your objectives, you should be able to identify who it is you are trying to reach. Also knowing what state Awareness, Interest, Activity and Advocacy your target audience is will help you to determine which tactics and tools to use. Next, you need to get a sense of the activities your target audience already engages in. For example, are they the sort of people who like to create content or consume content? Finally, which tools are the audience already using. Don’t plan on making the audience switch tools just to interact with you.How do you find out this information? Research, both primary and secondary. Look for free tools and don’t be afraid to ask your constituents.Identify Your TimelineThis is straightforward planning. Define your begin, end and milestone dates so you know when to stop and see how much progress you are making. If you have trouble defining this, ask other organizations who are more advanced than you how they set their timelines.
Raise you hands for each of these that resonate with you
Define Your MetricsIdentify which metrics will mean you have achieved your objectives. Metrics can also be classified into types, like:Activity: measures the amount of contentEngagement: measure the appropriateness of the contentReach: measures the scope of people interacting with the contentEstablish Your BaselineYou can’t measure anything if you don’t have a known value for comparison. For the metrics you want to measure, where are you starting from?Set Your ScheduleKnow the overall timeframe you have to achieve your objectives, and which stops along the way you need to record progress.Don’t Forget FeedbackYou’ll need to have more than simply quantifiable data. You may see trends that indicate you are failing, but you don’t know why. As Clay Shirky preaches, “Fail Informatively.” Put in place feedback loops and listen to them for the qualitative data that can explain the quantifiable trends you see.Grab Your ToolboxThere are tools available that will measure a host of metrics. Many are free. Use them.Website Analytics – Google Analytics (www.google.com/analytics) Blog Content – Post Rank (www.postrank.com) Blog Authority – Technorati(www.technorati.com) Facebook Fan Page Activity – Facebook Analytics Twitter – Twitter Analyzer (www.twitteranalyzer.com) Bookmarks – Social Blade (http://SocialBlade.com)Listening – Google Alerts (www.google.com/alerts) YouTube – YouTube Statistics and Data Flickr – Flickr Statistics
According to an August 2009 survey by Mzinga and Babson Executive Education, 84% of respondents said they don’t currently measure the ROI (return on investment) of their social media programs. Is that true for you? How many of you are actively measuring the impact of your social media efforts?
What are some of the ways you can collect feedback from your constituents? Surveys, Comments, face to face conversation. And by listening well in your social media channels, right?Are you doing this already? How often?
Once you know what you want to measure, you need to make sure you can. Identify the sources of your information and get them set up. If you have enough time, set your baseline with these sources as well.
Who used to watch Friends? Remember Janice? All in all, she wasn’t such a bad person, but we all hated her because of her voice, right? How you converse makes a difference.
How many of you are doing one or all of these things to hear the conversation?Who is setting aside time to analyze and share learning? How much time? Has that been a challenge?
To be in a position to really get viral spread via social media, you need to have the network in place. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to have a large network, rather you need to have a connected network. If you have built trust with a select group of influential people, then your small network has immediate access to a much larger secondary network.To leverage your network effectively to generate buzz, keep these things in mind: Don’t overdo it with the messages. You don’t want to burn out your network. Make sure your content is the kind of thing other people will want to pass on. Content that leverages current events or current culture work well, as does funny material. Be sure to return the favor to your influencers, and pass on their content too. Make sure your content is in a format that can easily be passed along and is appropriate to the community for which it is intended. Provide guidance to your supporters on how to best help you, covering how they can spread your message, and how frequently to do it.There are many ways to share your content: Blogging is a great way to share information with personality. Maintaining a blog takes work, so be sure to read up on blog management tips. Check out popular blogs in your space and emulate some of the practices they use. Photo sharing is relatively easy to do with tools like Flickr and Facebook. The key is to make your photos easy to find by tagging them well, and making sure you tell people where to find your photos. Video is such an inspirational medium that you can’t ignore it even though it can require a deeper investment. Remember that your videos don’t have to be perfect, or highly produced, they just have to tell a good story. With new technology like overlays on YouTube, you can even make your videos a little more directly tied to your engagement opportunities. Be sure to respect copyright with your videos. Articles are more than likely already a mainstay of your organization, but you may not be using tools like Digg and StumbleUpon to help spread your articles faster. Spend some time building a network on these sites, and post your articles there so that others can easily find them. General promotion channels like Facebook and Twitter work well as ways to promote content you store elsewhere. Simply post a link to your content in Facebook or in a tweet. Podcasts provide another great way to show personality along with content. Be sure you have an engaging voice and that you promote your podcast appropriately.
Participation in the conversation is the best way to begin building a network. Being a wallflower is no way to make friends, so you’re going to have to start interacting. There are, of course, ways to do this well. Obviously, you have to be present to win, so create an account in the communities you want to leverage. Take some time to learn the etiquette of the community you want to enter. Nobody likes the person who tries to change to whole vibe of a party to suit his or her whims. Observe for a little while and then begin to interact in a way that fits the “norms” of the community. Give a little first before asking for anything. Leave helpful or insightful comments on profiles, blogs, photos and videos. Point to useful resources (many of which might be part of your content). Be responsive to people who react to you. If you make a comment and then disappear, people won’t take you seriously as a member of the community. Forward along content you find interesting, providing ample credit to the creator. Chances are, they are listening and will see that you are helping them spread their content. They may return the favor some day.
Nearly everyone has one and we have them on our person virtually all of our waking hours.