Archives For Social Media

social media storiesDo you ever see opinions like these on social media?

“Now’s the time to take advantage of this special offer.”

“Our problem is not a lack of information, it’s a lack of application.”

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NO signIf you have visited my blog before, then you know I am extremely committed to helping nonprofits engage with their communities through social media. However, I sometimes encounter organizations that I know are not ready for social media, and so I advise them not to tweet a word.

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Lincoln SelfieWhen I watched the movie Lincoln I wondered how do we know what we know about his decision making, his mannerisms, his relationship with his wife?

Data, of course. Data in the form of government documents, personal letters, travel itineraries, transcribed debates, photographs, and speeches.

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Lazy feet up FacebookIf you haven’t noticed lately, then take a look at the organic reach of your organization’s FB page. It’s going down.

Several studies have shown the organic reach of Facebook is around 6%. That means you can expect 6 out of 100 people to see each of your Facebook posts. It was 49 out of 100 just last October. That’s a big change, but why?

FB has gone public.

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Last night PBS aired an episode of FRONTLINE entitled “Generation Like”. The program explores the relationship between teens, social media and corporate marketing.

There is an unprecedented relationship developing between teens and the companies that market to them. Social media is allowing teens to directly connect with brands and celebrities. Watch this 30 second preview.

A powerful line from the full-episode: “This is the biggest transformation of communication in our lifetime. To stand on the side lines is not an option.”

Many families are struggling with social media confusion because parents are standing on the side-lines unsure of what to do.

Here are a few things to understand about teens and social media:

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twitter followersWhen I joined Twitter in 2010, I quickly maxed out my following once everyone who remotely knew me had followed me. I hovered around 100 followers for three years.

Last week I passed 1000 followers!

My Twitter following has grown by 900 followers in 9 months.  I have not subscribed to any “pay for followers” service.  I haven’t had anything unexpectedly go viral. And most of my followers are not “follow to get followed” junkies. My following has come through intentional, steady effort.

Here’s what I’ve done and plan to keep doing.

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Gary Vaynerchuk is one of the gurus of social media. He is always worth a listen or read. Thanks Delano Sherley for tipping me off to this clip.

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Donors & FollowersI recently had the opportunity to partner with Urshan College (UC) & Urshan Graduate School of Theology (UGST) in an effort to raise the visibility of their annual stewardship banquet through social media.

Rick Hernandez Pic

Rick Hernandez
Urshan Director of Development

Afterwards, I got a chance to ask the Urshan Director of Development, Rick Hernandez, about his experience using social media to raise dollars and followers.

What type of a fundraising event is the Urshan Stewardship Banquet?

Rick: We provide a free catered dinner and share how Urshan College and Urshan Graduate School of Theology are impacting and equipping individuals for a better future. In addition, Urshan College’s vocal ensemble, United, provides incredible music and signing.

What led you to think about incorporating social media into the Stewardship Banquet?

Rick: Every year the “big” challenge is to reach individuals who aren’t “plugged in” to what UC/UGST are accomplishing. Most banquet attendees are supporters who are already well versed in what’s happening at Urshan. We felt that incorporating a social media initiative into the Stewardship Banquet would help us reach a larger audience than those physically present at the event.

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hands typingAs a consultant, I often get asked by pastors, “Should I blog?” My go to answer is that blogging will increase your social media traffic by 55% on average. However, blogging makes sense for pastors far beyond just growing their following on twitter.

Conversation
Church leaders often interact with people in a “touch and go” manner. Hospital visits, funerals, Sunday sermons, counseling sessions are all environments with a predetermined focus. While genuine connection does happen in these environments, it is connection born out of need. Think of the ER physician with a good bedside manner who connects well with patients.

Blogging allows church leaders to enter a voluntary conversation, which is a connection born out of choice. When people leave their comments they do so at their own discretion, and pastors are able to listen without the pressure of delivering an “expert” opinion. If pastor’s hope to have influence with current generations they have to be open to conversational engagement, not just preaching engagement. Lolly Daskal offers good advice when she tweets, “Stop using your leadership as a monologue and start engaging in a dialogue.”

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studio audiencePeople like to share their experiences, especially their entertainment experiences.

The earliest forms of entertainment were communal experiences in crowds on street corners or in theaters with an audience. When television first came along it created that same sense of audience. According to Kevin Slavin, “Television started off not as radio with pictures, but rather as theater in your home. All the shows were broadcast live in front of a real audience, not recorded and later edited.”

Eventually television did offer recorded programing that underwent editing before it was broadcasted. Interestingly, the studios noticed a decline in viewership. That’s because the human brain, specifically the limbic system, is wired to look for meaning in the meaning that other people find. People wanted to find meaning through the shared experience of watching television.

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