Everyday, several BILLION web pages are added to the web. Yes several BILLION, and that is on a slow day, throw in some ground breaking news and the web explodes.
How do you stay ahead? How do you get your message seen, heard,read and more importantly have your call to action answered?
1. Remember your organization is unique but so is every other organization. You can stand out by using your social platform to engage your community daily with fresh relevant topics, contest, drawings etc. Before you bellyache that you are an organization and don’t have money for a contest I
invite no I command you to become creative. Do you want to increase community participation on your page? Hold a contest requesting a weeks worth of great content highlighting your organization the winner becomes your organizations honorary volunteer web Reporter, Correspondent, Guru you get the idea. Show your community pride: throw a food/resource drive asking your members to contribute using your website to track how much has been given i.e. ABC Org clients have collected and dropped off 50 leashes to the local animal shelter.
2. Create a video you don’t need fancy equipment in fact you can even title it “Top 10 Mobile moments at _____Organization” people love to watch videos and videos are a great way to go viral and have your message spread
3. The seasons change here it is sweater time soon your website should show the change of season and what it means to your organization. Will your pantry need more canned good? Will you need more volunteers to help with homework?
4. Admit it deep down inside you know the difference between a good and a bad web page. Color schemes that make the eyes bleed and induce headaches, pictures that look like gifs at best, and at worse make people quickly close your page. Your website is like a dress or a business suit what was fashionable 20 years ago will not work today. Update or else risk being considered irrelevant.
5. You are sitting reading this article and you are sweating, yes the a/c is on but creativity makes you feel queasy. Here is some good news: a) you are not alone b) you are now surrounded by creative people c) like you they want to create the best possible website for your organization.
Because what is the point of having the worlds greatest website if it is never viewed?
Your organization does not have a website.
You have never heard of twitter.
Facebook is something that young people do as far as you are concerned.
YouTube, sounds like something you would use to clean a clogged drain.
Your organization may not have an established web presences but your supporters, staff, volunteers and community are all chatting about you online. Yes you create and manage your website, twitter account etc. But you can not manage what people will say about you and if you don’t have an established web presence then you have no way of knowing what is being said about your organization.
Does the playground need repairs? Is there an empty plot that could be turned into a community garden? Your community, volunteers and future donors are all talking about your organization.
Your presence online not only gives you insight into what being is said about your organization but also gives you an opportunity communicate with those who care about your organization.
So your website is up and running it looks fabulous, your board of directors, volunteers and staff are proud of how great it looks. And then it happens the first week, month passes and you see no traffic. You start to doubt your-self, the board of directors wonder if the website was great after all. Staff will wonder if perhaps the content is compelling. At worse the finger-pointing will result in the realization that setting up a website is just the beginning. At worse the website will not be updated and it will be come a project that could have been successful.
At some point you may start to get emails, calls, suggestions advising that you post content that drives traffic to your website even if the content is not relevant. This will be difficult on the one hand you have a great website and you want traffic but on the other hand you want traffic because it is relevant to your cause and your mission.
Updating and posting content that is NOT relevant to your organizational social media goals will deliver on the short-term but in the long-term people looking for reliable and a sector leader will not trust your website.
When the urge to post and update your website to drive starts to itch ask yourself: how will this impact my organization over the long-term?
People are increasingly receiving information through the web and and the next evolution is apps http://getprismatic.com/ allows people to curate information and and have it pushed to their phone or mobile device. Updating your website on a timely basis means that more people are exposed to your organization.
I love taking pictures, pictures can paint a story with out words and yet tell a deeper story. Your website needs pictures your pictures will help drive traffic and create intimacy. I have joined almost every photo-sharing site for one reason or another. Photobucket is about about to relaunch and I am pleased to say that that they have upgraded the accounts to 10 gb of photos and videos so head over and create an account and start capturing some memories.
Your donors, program participants, volunteers can all add to the memory collection by adding their own pictures and videos making your website that much more vibrant.
Your mission: it is more than a few words that describe your organizations. Your mission statement is the guiding principle by which you, your volunteers, staff, board members etc live and adhere to
How many of your employees know your mission statement?
How do your employees reflect the mission statement on a daily basis?
Think your mission is a static statement? Did you know you can take your mission and turn it into an actionable search query so that keywords will lead people to your website?
Your mission statement + an app= a new way to socially engage young people
1. More than half of all Americans use a computer to obtain information on resources and services. Can the individuals who are interested in your organzation find you online?
2. Social Media is 24/7/365, launching a social media campaign isnt a one time thing. Technology will only grow and evolve.
3. More people turn to
4. In the non-proft sector we all collectively root and cheer each other on, but the truth is that there is another organization like yours and they will get the funding you want because someone was able to pull up the information they needed immediately.
5 Your annual report is stale by the time it is printed, your funders want up to the minute updates, Twitter and your home page are the new pony express.
6 You are hosting an event and you would like to add new participants. You can bring in a special events consultant who will market to you the same thing they have pitched to every other organization they have worked with whether the event was a success or not
7 If your organization delivers a service imagine the cost savings by streamlining appointments and deliveries.
8. The web isn’t going away, you can cling to your direct mail that gets tossed in the trash, you can continue launching the same annual campaign, hosting the same themed events but all organizations needs a does of fresh creativity
9. Do you want to know how your clients, community members feel about your organizations you are only a few mouse clicks away.
10. Everyday that you say that social media is difficult, to costly not worth the effort you are losing, money, time, prospective, donors and clients.
11 (Bonus) At some point of resisting change you will launch a social media campaign, better to learn now and make a few small mistakes now rather than later.