Nearing the Finish Line the Problem I is it Looks a lot like a Start Line

Developing Social Media for Small and Really Small Non-Profits  October 2016 Commoo11 Blog 6

Empower Your Advocates & Cross-Promote Your Content

In steps 7 and 8 in my series of blogs following A Strategic Guide to Social Media for Non-profits by Alicia Johnson on Sprout Social , I will start focusing on my Grace Place target market and establishing connections with it and between it. Alicia Johnson gives a few suggestions on how I can start connecting the people and organizations that I am connected with. There are 25 organizations who meet on a regular basis at Grace Place, another approximately 50 per year meet occasionally. That could be a lot of connections and a lot of good information to share.

Start a Private Group

The most obvious way to start would be a Grace Place Facebook page or a Grace Place LinkedIn page.  We have a facebook page that has not been updated, so it is a case of cleaning it up and starting to use it.  If I start linking with this network, those who are interested will know what’s going on, those who may have come once or twice will be reminded to come again and the connections of 75 organizations may start to see postings of what is happening. If successful, this could become a very large network. I am not so sure the LinkedIn page is the right tool for now.  I have done many searches and can’t find similar groups.  I’ll have to  create a facebook group.

Promote Via Other Communications Channels

The blog tells me to tell people my phone number, email and other forms of communication. Sad, so very sad that I have to tell people they can phone me. Obviously people should be given the information so they can communicate with me. If you text me, I may notice some day when I am waiting in a Doctor’s office and have nothing else to do but play with my phone, so I won’t include that one. It is something to keep in mind when I am setting up my social networks.

Provide Sample Posts

choirIt takes until Step 7 for someone to tell me I can send an email with information? Hallelujah, finally something I already know how to do.

By sending ready-made information, people are more likely to use it? I didn’t need an expert to tell me that!!! That should also mean when I get started I can ask organizations if they have ready-made information, hmmmm.

Step 8 Track and Measure Your Results

I am down to the last step in A Strategic Guide to Social Media for Non-profits. Since this is an entire course in Algonquin’s Social Media Certificate I will not delve too deeply into this subject. I will look at the basic starting point of what Grace Place can do as I set up the social media tools that we will use. In Which Social Media Metrics Should Non-profits Keep Track Of they list Social Media Metrics in Order of Importance

  1. Conversion Assists
  2. Traffic from social media (likes, shares and retweets)

Engagement  Mentions • Shares • Comments • Likes / +1s / favourites

  1. Sentiment
  2. Followers

Conversion Assists

This happens when your goal as a non-profit is met. This can be a donation, signing up as a volunteer, signing a petition, signing up for a newsletter, showing up to an event, whatever is the right goal for your organization. Google Analytics is recommended for this metrics. When you sign up you are given a URL that you add to whatever page you want tracked. Once I get building this metrics I will understand better all the avenues I can follow. For me for now, getting people to follow and engage will be enough.

Traffic From Social Media

This includes the number of likes, shares and retweets. These are automatically measures by the social media platforms and happen in real time. Unfortunately, I cannot find any free notification alert type sites. These sites would let me know when I or any of my organizations are mentioned. I know what you are going to say, this apps or app are only $10 per month, but add that to the $10 a month that I may need to spend for Hootsuite or a similar tool and the $25 a month I am spending for an online calendar and, it adds up for a little organization like ours. So until things get rocking with our social media strategy …

Engagement is Nice, But Focus on Sentiment

Sentiment is an intangible metric. How many times have followers complimented you on something, or thanked you for great service, but how many complaints do you see?  Just keeping a simple diary of dates and comments will help you see what people are really saying.  I keep reading that social media is a conversation, so respond, positively or negatively to what people say, let them know that they were heard.

Don’t Get Caught Up On The Numbers

I’ve gotten friend requests from Asia (not from there, never been there), I’ve gotten LinkedIn requests from people I have never hear of and have no interest in doing business with. I think we would all have much larger social media networks if we linked up with every organization, person or place we had any kind of interest in.  The problem with that is that it would be useless.   There would be no return on time spent.  We are not selling albums so we don’t need a million followers.  Just one hundred who cared about and promoted what you were doing is worth more than if you received that one million follower that did nothing.

Conclusion from the Eight Steps

So I have now reviewed all eight steps in following A Strategic Guide to Social Media for Non-profits. In my first blog I hoped by the end I would have a social media plan. I am not sure I have gotten that far but I have a long list of things to review further, a lot of things to set up and a lot of time to invest to get the Grace Place social media presence established (and definitely a few more courses to take). I am certainly a lot more ready to take on the more detail courses in the Social Media Certificate. I know this is a marathon, not a sprint and a cross country race at that with ups and downs and changes around every curb. My social media strategy will change and grow (and shrink) as needed and as the market changes.   Things will not happen overnight, but I am willing to start, so I am a lot closer to the finish line then when I began these blogs. Wish me luck.

dead-last-is-greater-than-did-not-finish-which-trumps-did-not-start-2

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