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Using social media to expand your fundraising horizons

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Using social media to expand your fundraising horizons, with Firstgiving’s David Karp. Smart fundraisers are always looking for new ways to reach out to donors, especially in tough times. There’s a lot of talk about using social media for fundraising, but also so much uncertainly. For slides, see

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Using social media to expand your fundraising horizons

  1. 1. Using social media to expand your fundraising horizons A webinar with David Karp February 11, 2009
  2. 2. Before we start… <ul><li>Thank you for coming today! </li></ul><ul><li>For sound: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Turn on your computer’s speakers or plug in headphones (you don’t need a microphone), or… </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Call 312-878-0211 and enter code 255-261-112 (may be a toll call) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Slides and a recording of this session will be available on our website in a few days </li></ul><ul><li>Ask your questions any time using the question tool; we will answer as many as we can today, and post the rest on a facebook group </li></ul>
  3. 3. A little about you <ul><li>According to our registration survey… </li></ul><ul><li>17% of your organizations have a blog </li></ul><ul><li>45% of your organizations have a Facebook presence </li></ul><ul><li>8% of your organizations use twitter </li></ul><ul><li>4% have all three </li></ul><ul><li>50% have none </li></ul>
  4. 4. Social media for fundraising <ul><li>What is social media? </li></ul><ul><li>Can it help me raise more money? </li></ul><ul><li>How? </li></ul><ul><li>How do I get started? </li></ul><ul><li>Q&A </li></ul>
  5. 5. What makes these media social? <ul><li>“ Social Media are primarily Internet-based tools for sharing and discussing information among human beings. The term most often refers to activities that integrate technology, telecommunications and social interaction, and the construction of words, pictures, videos and audio. … Businesses also refer to social media as user-generated content (UGC)“ [Wikipedia] </li></ul>
  6. 6. What makes these media social? <ul><li>Huh?? </li></ul>
  7. 7. What makes these media social? <ul><li>Conversations, not lectures </li></ul><ul><li>Interactive, not passive </li></ul><ul><li>Personal, not corporate </li></ul><ul><li>Inherently sharable </li></ul><ul><li>Enhanced, or created by their consumers </li></ul>Author Controlled User Augmented User Created Your Website?
  8. 8. Ok, that’s social media. Why? <ul><li>Conventional fundraising is about cultivating donors and asking them for contributions (and that’s not a bad thing) </li></ul><ul><li>Think of social media as a form of cultivation first </li></ul><ul><li>…and maybe a way to ask second </li></ul>
  9. 9. Social media cultivation <ul><li>People learn more about your organization </li></ul><ul><li>People become part of the discussion about your cause </li></ul><ul><li>People can easily share information about your organization with friends </li></ul><ul><li>People become more involved with and more committed to your cause </li></ul><ul><li>It’s like having a virtual open house </li></ul>
  10. 10. Intro to 3 social platforms <ul><li>Blogs </li></ul><ul><li>Facebook </li></ul><ul><li>Twitter </li></ul>
  11. 11. What is a blog ? <ul><li>A blog is a special kind of website that organizes articles or “posts” by date or subject, and allows readers to comment </li></ul><ul><li>Blogs are usually less formal and more dynamic than a regular websites </li></ul><ul><li>Good blogs invite comments and discussion and repeat visits </li></ul><ul><li>Search engines like blogs! </li></ul>
  12. 12. Blog anatomy Personal stories, donate button, RSS feeds, pictures… Lots of comments, responding to the articles and to other comments
  13. 13. Starting a blog <ul><li>Read some blogs first, then try a free blog tool for yourself </li></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The best blogs are honest, interesting, useful, and consistent – not an easy task </li></ul><ul><li>Ask yourself: Do I have the resources to make a good blog? Is a bad blog worth it? </li></ul>
  14. 14. What is Facebook ? <ul><li>Facebook is a “Social utility” </li></ul><ul><li>People “live” online there </li></ul><ul><li>It’s not just for kids (half of you are there!) </li></ul><ul><li>The average Facebook user views 45 pages during a session </li></ul><ul><li>There are different kinds of FB pages: personal, groups, companies, etc. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Starting with Facebook <ul><li>Sign up for a personal account </li></ul><ul><li>Find your friends, check out what they’re doing </li></ul><ul><li>Join some groups </li></ul><ul><li>Search with keywords related to your organization’s mission </li></ul><ul><li>Start contributing and creating </li></ul>
  16. 16. Everything is on Facebook
  17. 17. What is Twitter ? <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>“Twitter is a service for friends, family, and co–workers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent answers to one simple question: What are you doing? ” </li></ul><ul><li>Yeah, I didn’t get it either – at first </li></ul>
  18. 18. Twitter is a lot of conversations
  19. 19. Why is Twitter popular? <ul><li>It’s like instant messaging or text messaging, but to a huge group </li></ul><ul><li>Oddly enough, communication happens, and community forms in tiny bursts </li></ul><ul><li>It’s somewhat addictive </li></ul>
  20. 20. Starting with Twitter <ul><li>Sign up, it’s free </li></ul><ul><li>At first, you’ll see almost nothing </li></ul><ul><li>Start “following” people </li></ul><ul><li>Participate – say something, ask a question, respond to others’ questions </li></ul>
  21. 21. Setting expectations <ul><li>Social media isn’t a miracle cure </li></ul><ul><li>It may take a long time for your social media investment to pay off </li></ul><ul><li>It might even never pay off </li></ul>
  22. 22. Social media is one tool <ul><li>Don’t overinvest in social media </li></ul><ul><li>Know your audiences (current and future) and court them appropriately </li></ul><ul><li>If you neglect conventional media, you might leave out your core supporters </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t underinvest in social media, either </li></ul>
  23. 23. Social media in perspective
  24. 24. Fundraising with social media <ul><li>Ok, we’ve been educated and we’ve been warned… </li></ul><ul><li>…now, how can we raise some money with social media?? </li></ul>
  25. 25. Fundraising with blogs <ul><li>Your blog probably shouldn’t be all about fundraising </li></ul><ul><li>But you can add a donate button or fundraising widget </li></ul><ul><li>Most importantly, use the your blog to show the world the great outcomes your organization produces and to encourage discussion </li></ul>
  26. 26. Fundraising with Facebook <ul><li>Create a company page or a group or a fan page for your organization or event </li></ul><ul><li>When people on Facebook join your group or become your fans, you can send them messages (but don’t overdo it) </li></ul><ul><li>Use Facebook to seek volunteers, donors and fundraisers (who find other donors) </li></ul>
  27. 27. Fundraising with Facebook Apps <ul><li>There are thousands of applications you can install on your Facebook page </li></ul><ul><li>Some applications let people show their support for your organization on their Facebook pages </li></ul><ul><li>Some applications let people make donations to their favorite charities too </li></ul><ul><li>Try an off-the-shelf application or hire a developer to create one for you </li></ul>
  28. 28. “Fundraising” applications
  29. 29. Fundraising with Twitter <ul><li>This one’s tricky – even Twitter hasn’t figured out how they’re going to make money yet </li></ul><ul><li>Use Twitter to reach and mobilize your most techie supporters </li></ul><ul><li>Encourage donors and fundraisers to use Twitter to publicize their support and progress </li></ul>
  30. 30. Work the “retweet” <ul><li>In Twitter, if you see a message (a “tweet”) you like, you “re-tweet”it so all your followers can see it </li></ul><ul><li>Encourage retweeting of your messages, and return the favor often </li></ul><ul><li>This can be a quick way to spread the word about a campaign or an event </li></ul>
  31. 31. One more warning <ul><li>In social media, you might be the topic of discussion, but you’re not always the center or the master of it. </li></ul><ul><li>You will have to give up some control to gain more followers and influence. This is ok. </li></ul>
  32. 32. Relaxing your grip <ul><li>It’s the nature of social media that not all information is exactly right , but the bulk of it is generally right (see wikipedia) </li></ul><ul><li>Not all comments will be favorable </li></ul><ul><li>How you react to unfavorable comments says a lot about you </li></ul><ul><li>Pick your battles, and don’t be afraid to apologize when you’re wrong </li></ul>
  33. 33. Keys to success <ul><li>Social media is just one piece of the puzzle, don’t neglect the rest </li></ul><ul><li>One size doesn’t fit all, do what’s right for your organization and your people </li></ul><ul><li>Keep experimenting and always test </li></ul><ul><li>You will give up some control – learn to live with it, learn to love it </li></ul>
  34. 34. Slides and recording will posted to by Monday and a note will be emailed out Questions that we don’t get to now will be posted and discussed on our Facebook group: (don’t try to write that down, we’ll email it too) QUESTION TIME
  35. 35. To request a free live demo, call (617) 591-2121 x1005 or email Learn more at Thank you again! Next webinar: Tuesday, February 24: Using fundraising teams effectively 
  36. 36. Appendix: top 5 starting points <ul><li>Unofficial and incomplete lists of good blogs to read, good facebook resources, and good twitter people </li></ul><ul><li>Just to get you started, there’s millions more to check out </li></ul><ul><li>Some are official Firstgiving outlets </li></ul>
  37. 37. Top 5 blogs for NPOs <ul><li>Beth’s Blog: How NPOs can use social media http:// / </li></ul><ul><li>Philanthropy 2173 http:// / </li></ul><ul><li>Katya’s Non-profit marketing blog http:// / </li></ul><ul><li>Entry level living (esp for the millennials) http:// / </li></ul><ul><li>The online fundraising blog http:// / </li></ul>
  38. 38. Top 5 Facebook for NPOs <ul><li>Social Actions fan page </li></ul><ul><li>Future Leaders in Philanthropy </li></ul><ul><li>Boston Marathon Charity Team Runners http:// =50072841215 </li></ul><ul><li>NPO Web 2.0 </li></ul><ul><li>Firstgiving Fundraising Application http:// / </li></ul>
  39. 39. Top 5 NPO tweeters <ul><li>Beth Kanter @kanter </li></ul><ul><li>Joe Solomon @engagejoe </li></ul><ul><li>Corey Pudhorodsky @coreypud </li></ul><ul><li>Amy Sample Ward @amyrsward </li></ul><ul><li>Firstgiving @firstgiving </li></ul>