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June 24 :: Social Media Training for Hewlett Foundation Grantees

June 22, 2010

I am so looking forward to this training! It’s in sunny, laid back, beautiful Santa Cruz, CA. I was hired by Spitfire Strategies to present a 90-minute session on social media to grantees of the Hewlett Foundation. I’ll actually be giving the session twice to two different sets of grantees on the afternoon of the 24th.

Many of the attendees are executive directors and program folks. Only about half in the room are communications and development staff. Therefore, this session will be less focused on how-to, and more focused on the Big Picture of social media, best practices, and how social media will shape the Mobile Web in the very near future (as in right now).

I am going to start with defining Web 1.0, Web 2.0 and Web 3.0. That context is so important for nonprofits to understand. Social media can be powerful, but the vast majority of ROI (Return on Investment) is still in Web 1.0 (namely e-newsletters and “Donate Now” buttons). Those nonprofits that excel at and embrace Web 2.0 have built their e-newsletters lists by the thousands over the last few years – thus their online donors too. They are also the best positioned to reap the benefits of early adoption of Web 3.0 – coming soon to a smartphone and tablet near you (as right now, this very second).

I am also going to discuss the importance of blogging – a tool I relegate to the realm of Web 1.5. Blogging today is so different from blogging in 2006-08. It’s crucial to have a consistent stream of fresh content to distribute on social networking sites, and blogging allows nonprofits to easily do that. Blogging done effectively can also significantly improve an organization’s search engine results.

I give over 100 webinars a year now,  but I much prefer the in-person trainings. I like watching people’s reactions, leading discussions, answering questions. Public speaking is invigorating. I am bit of accidental public speaker, but now three years into it and 300 webinars and presentations later, I am only nervous the 5-minutes before the presentation starts. Once I start talking, it’s hard to get me to stop. :)

Related Link:
Social Media Training by DIOSA Communications


1) Twitter Mention: @nonprofitorgs Thanks for the great #socialmedia tips today! We’ll try to get a square avatar :)
2) Twitter Mention: Thanks for all the great #socialmedia tips today. Looking forward to implementing them!

One Comment leave one →
  1. June 25, 2010 2:31 pm

    Got to say, this was one of toughest speaking engagements I have had in a long time. People’s experience levels with social media were very diverse. Almost everyone had personal profiles on Facebook, but only a small fraction were Admins for Facebook Pages. Only a handful were Tweeting. Just a couple of YouTube channels in the room. And no one was on Foursquare.

    It’s tough. If I went too basic [“Here is what a Facebook Page looks like…”], then the younger generation would be bored to tears with yet another Social Networking 101 session. But if you go more advanced, then those that are not daily users of social media get overwhelmed.

    The first session went very well (I think). Lots of engagement, questions and even though content went from basic to advanced, we got though the entire presentation and it ended on a good note. There were more Admins in this session, and even if they were newcomers, I got feedback after that session that they were inspired to start experimenting.

    I don’t feel the second session went very well. Ninety seconds after I finished the questions from the first session, I had to turn right around and give the exact same presentation all over again. It felt strange to tell the same stories, jokes all over again. It didn’t feel genuine. And then 5 minutes into the session I got a very Big Picture question about social media. We got a bit side-tracked into talking about lobbying and advocacy for 10 minutes or so. Had to bring it back around… talked about and how you can use social media to build large online communities that you can mobilize to contact elected officials.

    The rest of the second session went OK, but a couple of times we veered off the presentation with technical questions (How can I be on Facebook without using my real name? The answer. You can’t.) The new Facebook Community Pages also came up. Yikes. I could just see the confusion in the room on that one. That brought up of issues of Facebook ethics, linking profiles, and social search. That’s very advanced social networking content in a room of mostly beginners.

    I wasn’t able to finish the second session. Hate that. No conclusion. No final thoughts. Just this frantic exit so the conference host could ask attendees to fill out evaluation forms.

    I did feel a little better after the conference host came up and asked how it went. He was in the first session and had a good experience. He asked how the second one went, and I said not as well. He confirmed that they had the same problem last year. That’s it is very difficult to give a session about social media when the experience level and skill set of attendees is so diverse.

    When I said my good-bye’s and thanks you’s to Spitfire staff, at least they said the evaluation forms did not reflect my feelings about the second session. They got good feedback about my sessions on paper and verbally, but I am certain a few bad reviews came out of that second session.

    All that said, the Bay Area is always lovely to visit and there is so much intelligence in the room when I speak out here. Very impressive. Now at 7am the next morning I already had three friend requests on Foursquare from yesterday’s sessions. That’s how you do it these days. Move quick, move on to the Next Big Thing.

    I decompressed with good tacos and a cold beer on the beach. Today, I am going to take Pacific Coast Highway north to SFO. I only have one webinar a week for the next 4 weeks, and I don’t have another speaking engagement booked until early August. That’s a quasi-vacation… and it starts now. :)

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