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There’s a phrase that many people have used that I can relate to: “Social media is like recess”; the big group is made up of lots of small groups, every group’s got a leader, and your actions have consequences.

The Revolution of Social Media

 

Well First Things First

You always want to connect your social media to your website and vise-versa. If your users are on your social media site, you can direct them for more information about your organization to your website.

This will also help users find your website within search engines, such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Since social media sites are one of the top sites that appear within search results.

Then tell your story through social media – instead of your users coming to you, you can go to your users through Facebook and Twitter.

Now a reality check, “online is not a silver bullet, just like social media is not a silver bullet”. What I mean about this is, just because you have a website or connect through social media doesn’t mean that’s all you need to do to get or keep members. It’s just one avenue you can take to move your organization forward by reaching a larger audience.

There are many types of social media networks to choose from today. Besides Facebook and Twitter you also have YouTube, Flickr, Yelp, Twiki, Digg, and many others to get your message out. Social media is about people wanting to be seen and heard and connect with others.

When the web first came out it was launched as Web 1.0, which was to design your website and add some content and you’re done.

Today, we’ve now emerged to Web 2.0, which is to not only design your website and add content, but to now engage with your users and members in healthy conversation. This new trend has now opened doors for many organizations to listen to what their members want and need from them.   

So why is social media relevant and especially right now

  • Because it always pays to listen to what your users / members need
  • Creditability is the most enduring asset for an organization
  • Campaigns are cheaper, but require passionate people to make them successful. Most social media tools are free, but they won’t work unless you have dedicated individuals who are willing to dedicate some time (not a lot of time) to keep it updated with important information

Things to remember when money is tight

  • Don’t curl into a fetal position – which means don’t be afraid to use some of these tools to help campaign your message, take a chance and make that step
  • But also make sure that you set realistic goals for you and your organization
  • Don’t abuse your existing members - don’t push your message on them to hard where they feel smothered
  • Get online today - take a look at the different type of social media tools that are out there and figure out which ones might be useful for your organization. Conduct a search and see where people are already having conversations about your organization or about your cause.
  • Then don’t be nervous - sometimes you just need to get out there and test the waters

You as an organization want to be seen and connect to other individuals who share the same passions and goals as you do, that’s when you join social media’s such as Facebook and Twitter. This will help you feel as though you are apart of something or a mission that’s greater then yourself. When a user wants to know anything about your mission, you want to make your members and users feel comfortable to trust that you can provide them with the best tools and/or information they need.

So after all of this, why should you care about Social Media?

  1. It’s growing fast and it’s completely pervasive
  2. It’s a powerful tool to build relationships and a great conversation based platform
  3. It puts word of mouth on steroids
  4. Lastly – the price is right

Here’s a list of some social media tools that can help you move forward with getting your message out there. 

Social Media Toolkit to help you get started