In order to stay up to date on what's going on in the world of technology - and nonprofit technology in particular - I follow quite a few blogs and twitter feeds. There's a lot of great content out there but if you don't have the time to stay on top of things (and even if you do!) it can be overwhelming. So, for those of you who have less time to do all this "listening" on nonprofit technology, I'm posting a blog each Friday with the top resources I found in the last week.
Do you ever wonder what real engagement would look like on Facebook? The Environmental Defense Fund has done a great job in building community on Facebook, which has also led to increased advocacy and donations. They've even built a closed group called EDF Superheros for their champions, which has become a tight-knit community.
"Part of our recruitment success from Facebook stems from the fact that we have built our fans completely organically – through traditional community management tactics of engagement and creating a value exchange, rather than through Facebook advertising. This approach has increased the value of our fans tremendously. They help us gauge interest in topics, adjust phrasing of our communications, and provide us with free assets to use in our campaigns. Our fans are engaged, invested, and active."
"It was beautifully crafted (or at least I thought so.) The returns were less than mind-blowing. So, as we embark on our next online fundraising adventure, I thought it would be a good idea to hit up the NetWits gang. (Enter cheesy A-team music here.) I asked them the following question: What are the top reasons that email appeals get ignored??"
I can't share all their good advice here - you'll have to read the full post for yourself. But here is my favourite:
“You’re always asking for money. If I get four emails a month, even from an organization I like and all they do is ask for money … what kind of relationship is that? Romance me a bit, tell me some stories, and get me fired up about the cause. Let me know that there are other things I can do to support you that aren’t all about money like: take an advocacy action, share with a friend, like you on Facebook, play a game, attend an in person or online event … and then, yes, ask me for money. But just don’t do it all the time. – Kathryn Hall
How do you explain a satellite image to someone who's never seen a map before? In this post, the Director of Crisis Mapping at Ushahidi shares some of his fail stories from a recent trip to Liberia. I think it's a good reminder - both for those doing development work who run into similar situations to the ones described here, but also for all of us who may contribute to making technology scary and confusing by making (incorrect) assumptions about what our coworkers, volunteers, clients & friends know about technology.
Successful technology planning is more about having a deep understanding of your organization's strategic goals and figuring out how technology can support those goals than it is about being a tech expert. This post lists 7 tips to keep in mind as a non-techie planning IT strategy.