Topic: Social Media

2012 Nonprofit Marketing Communications: A Recap of Trends, Tools, and Tactics

December 13, 2012
Budgets are barely budging, staffing is scarce, and there’s a growing arsenal of tools & techniques to be tinkered with. I surveyed the nonprofit marketing communications scene to find out which strategies, tactics, and activities worked—and which didn’t—this past year. How did your efforts stack up?

Forget Strategy: Develop a Social Media Philosophy

November 20, 2012
Social media changes fast. According to Zac Johnson, Head of Youth Marketing at Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, within a short time the life of a social media channel (from the first time you hear about it to the last time you use it) will be two years. At this velocity, creating a social media strategy for each medium will be futile, if it's not already. Even today, social media strategies look less like long-term plans and more like clumps of short-term tactics.

Three Analytics Tools to Gauge Your Social Audience’s Pulse

November 20, 2012
Just like many of the nonprofits and other loyal readers of Beth’s Blog out there, we at Social Media for Nonprofits were excited for the recent release of Beth’s new book, Measuring the Networked Nonprofit: Using Data for Social Change. In line with its focus on turning data into knowledge through powerful, insightful measurement and analytics of social media efforts, we wanted to share three simple tips and resources that nonprofits can put to work.

How Nonprofits Can Use Reddit

November 9, 2012
I'll admit it: when people have asked me how brands could engage effectively on Reddit, the super-popular link-sharing social network, I've usually rolled my eyes and said, "They can't." But I'll admit I may have been wrong, especially after President Obama answered questions from members of the network in August, 2012. In light of the success of that event, people are asking once again if brands and nonprofits can use Reddit effectively. And the answer is:"maybe." What's wrong with Reddit

Messages that Move

November 7, 2012
The advocacy community has gone mad for story. But stories are only as strong as the latest retelling. While compelling characters and evocative details give our stories life, it is email subject lines, tweets, Facebook posts, and headlines that give them legs. The best stories have a clear message—or moral—that can be repeated over coffee or conveyed in 140 characters. And the messages that move tend to inspire and empower.

Lessons from a Social Media Addict

November 1, 2012
Once upon a time in the early 90s, a DJ friend of mine complained that webcasting "wasn't radio." He predicted that in a few years the web would be remembered as a fad, not unlike CB Radio. He was absolutely right about one thing: the web is not like radio. In terms of building audiences, it's infinitely better. Yet many broadcasters still treat social media as a means of repurposing their radio content instead of treating it as a medium in its own right. They need to know that social media and radio broadcasting have key similarities, and one of them is this: good programming leads to larger audiences, which attracts more funding to support and improve your operation.

Improving Direct Marketing Response with Online Advertising

October 19, 2012
Determined to embrace integrated, multichannel marketing, the nonprofit sector is increasingly shifting direct marketing budget to emerging channels of consumer solicitation, most notably mobile, social media, and online advertising. Nonprofit marketers, however, are steeped in mono-channel direct marketing (primarily postal-based direct mail or outbound telemarketing) and often find themselves unable to rationalize these new, dynamic channels of consumer contact with an acceptable return on investment (ROI). Perhaps the most blindly engaged channel used by nonprofits is online advertising.

Measuring Social (Media’s) Impact and Reaching the Policy Makers that Matter

October 17, 2012
No matter what anyone tells you, it's almost impossible to measure the success of your social media campaigns by using only one measurement tool: accurate reporting relies on a suite of analytics tools (most of which are available for free) and a fair share of thoughtful analysis. To truly determine if you're using social media to reach the right people, you're going to have to take a deep look into how your target audience behaves.

Engagement Scoring: The Next Level in Fostering Meaningful Communication

October 12, 2012
If your organization is like most, you have a communications team pushing content through multiple channels. No matter the outlet – whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, mass emails, direct mail, blogging or SMS campaigns – how does your team know how well they're doing? Is it number of likes? Is it the total contributions from an outreach campaign? How does your team know which members are primed to make the leap from supporter to volunteer? You probably have some metrics in place, but the next step in effective engagement is using data to push your audience up the ladder of engagement.

Metrics: Go Beyond Counting Likes and Followers

September 18, 2012
Archers don't aim at the point halfway between the arrow tip and the target. If they did, they would never hit the bullseye. In the same way, many nonprofits still focus too much on counting Facebook likes and Twitter followers as if these metrics are the end goal, and then feel frustrated when they're not getting the results they expected. Going beyond counting likes and followers means asking a number of quantitative and qualitative questions about several things.