New Media/Timeless Objectives

February 9, 2010 at 2:44 pm Leave a comment

Following the recent (and successful) brown bag sessions for local organizations, it has become apparent to me that in the quest to find good social media training, nonprofits are frustrated.

Apparently, many sessions for NPOs present Facebook and Twitter, etc.  as if mere use of these tools is the goal. “Get a fan page on Facebook”; “Use twitter to follow and be followed”.  There seems to be a lack of context that can evolve understanding from merely mechanical to powerfully strategic.

Social media can provide very meaningful enhancement to NPO communications strategy.  However, social media isn’t the strategy. Whether web-based, in person or via printed newsletter, successful communication  still comes from knowing what you want to communicate, with whom, why, and finally, how. If you don’t know that, Facebook isn’t going to help.

I was asked for a quote to frame an upcoming presentation I am making to a community of nonprofits in Washington State. I think it sums it up pretty well:

“Effective communication has always been the key to raising funds, promoting services and engaging with stakeholders. While the evolution of social media has created amazing new opportunities, it has also profoundly changed the way people engage with causes and charities.  In my work with foundations, non-profit organizations and individuals I focus on tangible methods and tactics to achieve mission-based results.  More than an overview of web and social media tools, my presentation will get folks thinking strategically about how they can most effectively connect with clients, supporters and ambassadors in the digital age.

Good nonprofit use of social media is not a whirlwind race to adopt the latest technology. New social media tactics only work within the context of timeless nonprofit objectives; building relationships, organizing events, empowering ambassadors. We need to be  selective and purposeful in the deployment of  the technology and the leveraging of trends to do the things we have always done – listen, support and serve our communities.


Entry filed under: New Media & Nonprofits. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

Lunchtime Learning…Social Media for NPOs Three hours in Olympia

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"Wow – great presentation today! I came into this workshop thinking I knew enough about social media to kick start the organization I work for, but once the presentation began I was immediately taken aback at how much I didn’t know as well. It was a great learning experience and opened the doors to many ideas I now have – in fact I am having a meeting tomorrow with the rest of my colleagues to discuss these ideas! " - Randi-Leigh Michaniuk, Winnipeg, Manitoba

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