February 1, 2012

How To Get In Bed With Social Media: Finding What Works Best For You.

There are tons of different options out there when it comes to deciding which social media tools will help you get your message out to the masses. It seems like every time I master one platform the next best thing comes out and I feel like I am just barely treading the media waters. Technology is fast moving and can be a bitch to keep up with. So at the end of the day we are left trying to answer the million dollar question: “What are the best and most efficient ways for me to utilize the social media and technology tools to help me get my point across-I want to be heard?”

The term social media has become a very common term. I think everyone probably has a general idea of what social media is but finding the definition that best suits your personal or professional needs can be quite tricky. Thankfully, should you want guidance, there are tons of options out there in terms of making technology work for you.

Social media author and expert, not-for-profit pioneer and SXSW Interactive presenter of “Social Media Boundaries: Personal/Personnel Policy,” Amy Sample Ward of NTEN, the membership organization of nonprofit professionals who put technology to use for their causes. Amy co authored the book Social By Social, which is available for free download here.  The book is a starting Level guidebook with ten full case studies that go through different kinds of organizations and what they’ve done with social media tools and how they did it. It can also be used as a tutorial, very basic starting guide. We were lucky enough to snag a few helpful tips from Amy last Friday and she says:

You aren’t going to know if a tool is right for your organization unless you try it-use it as yourself and see what the tool is like over a week or two, see if it makes sense and if it does make a profile, invest some time and play around with it

Start tracking from the very beginning. Even if you don’t know what  your metrics are going to be or what your goals for those metrics are going to be just start paying attention. Just track what you did or how many people interact with you and over time you will be able to start seeing what you should be tracking in each platform. If you track from the very beginning it will help you realize which platforms are worth while and help you pay attention to what is important within that platform.

We were also fortunate enough to speak with Anni Poppen a Seva-centered graphic designer. Anni founded the organization NEOI to effectively, efficiently, and frugally provide not-for-profit organizations and foundations with a holistic campaign of marketing tools needed to make a difference—successfully. Her project, to help twelve non-profits develop a social media strategy, one for each month of the year-is as fascinating as it is heart-warming.

To listen to this show please click here.

 This article was lovingly assembled and transcribed by #WIMG’s Director Of  Social Media and Radio Broadcast Expert Jennifer Cusano. Check out more of Jenn’s exceptionally skillful work and wordsmithery on Here Women Talk, elephant journal, and LinkedIn.

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