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Twitter: The 3 Bucket Rule

3BucketRuleImage

 

Deontae Moore 

If you’ve participated in any of our social media trainings, you’ve probably come across this idea of the 3 buckets. While we try to consider this module for all social media platforms, it’s best practice comes from Twitter.

What does the 3 bucket rule mean?

The “3 Bucket Rule will spur you to a better understanding of what you need to do on social media if your organization needs to develop content.

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The “Me” Bucket

You’ve probably already mastered this one. It’s the self-promotion bucket. You create content that talks about your organization (or brand) and pretty much nothing else. This is fine because you should use social media to tell people who you are and what you are doing. But you do not want everything to be centered around you. However, you still need to tell your story and make sure you’re bringing awareness to your organization – that’s understandable. Consider posting a few times for things you’re doing all while eliminating any signs of the “screaming me-mes.”

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The “Me + Community” Bucket

You want to promote organizations doing what you’re doing or highlight any partner organizations you work with. Doing this builds you as an asset and also gives you content. This bucket also suggest that you share news related to what you do. This is purposely done to make you appear credible and to position your organization as a reliable resource.

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The “Me + People” Bucket

Who are your people? People make up an organization. So, this bucket is essentially to give your organization a human face. You want the personalities of your people to shine through to your organization’s account. It makes your content relatable, authentic and offers a human element to your Twitter account. Retweet some of the things your president or marketing director is saying on their Twitter account – make your audience get a sense of who you are. Content that tends to do best on social media is behind the scenes material – so capitalize on this notion.

We credit the bucket rule to Ms. Amy Guth, a phenomenal communicator. Follow her on Twitter (@amyguth)

Deontae Moore is the Marketing & Digital Media Manager at Community Media Workshop. You can follow him on Twitter here

So, Your Boss Wants to Use Facebook…

Well, here’s a little Facebook 101 to get them started.

Long gone are the days when Facebook was solely for personal use to keep in touch with classmates, friends and family. Now, many nonprofits, brands, and small businesses are using Facebook’s platform to reach their audience. Here at the Workshop, Facebook is a tool we use constantly in our online communications plan to reach our audience, nonprofit communicators. Community Media Workshop has a Facebook fan page for the organization, which allows our co-founder and staff to keep their Facebook profiles separate and for private use. Many founders and executive directors at nonprofits may want to use their Facebook profile on behalf of the organization, however, this is not recommended. Instead, create a Facebook fan page for the organization.

Our resident social media experts are often asked, “what is the difference between a Facebook profile and a page?” Even though it can seem complicated, especially to someone who is new to Facebook, the answer can be put simply: a profile belongs to a person, and a page belongs to an organization or entity, like a nonprofit (and even a cause or a brand).

You can only have one Facebook profile – ’cause there’s only one you 😉

A Facebook profile is your personal “home” on the site where you connect with “friends” and post personal information about yourself including photos and status updates. “Friends” are the profiles of people you allow to view and interact with your profile, and in turn they allow you to view and interact with their profile. Friends will then see updates from your profile in their news feed and you will see their updates in your own news feed. On your profile you can only add 5000 friends. However, you can “follow” a person, which allows you to view any posts that they make public.

A Facebook page is essentially a fan page. You can make pages for your nonprofit, products and services, causes, your favorite band or TV show, and so on. When you create a fan page, fans must click “Like” in order to view updates and interact with the fan page. This is a great way for nonprofits to promote their cause, events, and connect with donors and volunteers.

Profiles and fan pages can tie into one another. At the Workshop, each staff member has a Facebook profile, which we use to log into Facebook and manage the organization’s page as an administrator. This means even though we are logging in with our personal profile information we are choosing to use Facebook as an administrator for Community Media Workshop’s fan page.  Did I confuse you? Sorry, there will be a part two, stay tuned.  In the meantime, sign up for our Social Media 101 training coming up on September 28th. And, enjoy this video that elaborates more on Facebook profiles vs. pages.

 

Post by DeAnndra Bunch

Storytelling with Storify

Guest post by Community Media Workshop board member Teresa Puente

Looking for an innovative way to tell a story?

Try Storify.

Storify uses social media to curate and create stories.

You pull publicly available information from Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, Instagram and You Tube. You also can paste a link from anything you find in the web and post it on Storify.

You can pick a topic that is in the news, such as a recent protest, sporting event or anything sources have posted content about on the social media networks.

Or you can create a Storify on an issue that your nonprofit is following. Say you have an event or press conference. You can take photos, videos, tweets or stories from that event and create a Storify of the event itself, of news media coverage of the event or a combination of the two.

Here is how you start:

Login with your Twitter account.

Write a headline for your Storify.

In the box below you can write a lede or a summary.

You build a Storify by using key words or hashtags (#) to search topics on the right.

Drag the content you want to use into the left space. This is where you build your Storify.

Also note that you can write mini text blocks in between each item you curate. You can use this for captions or add additional information about the social media content.

You may want a total of eight to 10 items in your Storify. Make sure there is a balance of tweets, Facebook posts, photos, video an text.

Then you publish your piece. You can share it with others on Twitter. People also can follow you on Storify.

Many news organizations and bloggers are using Storify as a storytelling tool. Once your Storify is published you can share the link or embed it on a blog or website.

It’s a great way to aggregate and curate content as well as share your original content that you have posted on the various social media networks.

See my video tutorial here:

 

Teresa Puente, author of “Chicanísima” blog on the ChicagoNow network is founder of “Latina Voices.com.” A veteran journalist, she is also an Associate Professor of Journalism at Columbia College Chicago and a long-standing board member of Community Media Workshop. Follow her tweets @tcpuente

If a picture is worth a thousand words, what is a 6-second video clip worth?

 

Guest post by DeAnndra B.

 

Vine

This is not an endorsement for Vine nor is it a step-by-step guide of how to use Vine. *cue dramatic instrumental movie music* This is about my journey three weeks using the Vine app with iPhone. Let’s begin.

 Twitter’s Vine is a mobile-only app that allows users to create 6-second looped videos that are posted within the app. This concept seemed so cool to me, but I was weary of how the app would be used for good, and the not-so good that often exists in the social media world. Vine was introduced to the Apple App Store for iOS devices in late January of this year. Sites like Mashable and TechCrunch had helped announce the app’s arrival and it seemed as if everyone was buzzing about Vine. To add to the online buzz, the app’s own Blog posted Vines created by the Brooklyn Nets, RedVines, Paul McCartney and other celebrities and brands.

As a communicator attempting to stay on top of the latest trends in social media, I downloaded Vine immediately. And for a few weeks that was all I did with the app even though it was clearly gaining popularity amongst my peers. We discussed Vine briefly at The Workshop, since we’re all iPhone users, and no one really had an opinion about it other than “it seems cool”. I decided I would try to learn more about Vine, find out how cool it really is, and maybe even become a successful regular user. I figured that I could work Vine into The Workshop’s social media plan, and potentially a mobile communications plan.

I will admit that I struggled with exactly what and how to vine and when was an appropriate to vine. Using Vine was a little more challenging than I had expected. This little six-second video was taking more time to plan and shoot than it would actually run in the app. For about two weeks I shot videos of trainings, videos featuring our media guide, and doodles scribbles notes from marketing meetings. Most of them were posted to my Vine and  Twitter accounts. Many did not make the cut for one reason or another, including my phone dying in the middle of posting. Really, I was challenged because I was over thinking the process and what the finished product should be. There is no editing with Vine; it’s simple and what you shoot, is what you get.

Once I stopped over thinking how to make the perfect Vine, it became more natural, fun, and I wanted to Vine everything. While I still consider myself a Vine amateur, I can say that The Workshop has incorporated Vine into our own social media plan. Here’s why: content is king and mobile is taking over. 

    • Vine allows non-profits and brands to connect with their audience on their iOS mobile device. There are not many social media apps that are mobile-based and/ or mobile-only apps. If you’re looking for a new way to connect with your audience and share content on-the-go quickly, consider Vine. Share quick content from a forum, a rally, or even something in your office like a cat at The Humane Society.  Use Vine to tell a story, share your organization’s messages, or create a call to action.
    • Non-profits and brands can create unique visual content with the app and easily share it with their Twitter and Facebook followers. Now you have instantly updated your Facebook at least once for the day and you have an automatic Tweet to share. In addition, you can create a short paragraph discussing your daily Vine, and now you have a blog post. Which brings me to my next point…
    • You can embed Vines for use on the web!  Add a Vine to your blog or e-newsletter by embedding it like I did below with one of The Workshop’s Vines. I’m sure this is an option for any webpage on your website as well.

[By the way, feel free to take our social media survey.]

 

Vine is also easy to use as far as design and functionality are concerned. In my opinion, Vine has some functional similarities to Instagram. You can create a profile, including an avatar, link to your Twitter account, follow other profiles, “like” Vines by tapping the smiley face underneath the post and comment. Additionally, you have the option to mute or un-mute the audio on any Vine.

Here’s a little more of what I learned while using the app:

  • A viral Vine post may take a little planning and a bit of a director’s eye, but no experience is necessary.
  • Vine automatically saves the video to the camera roll on the device. So, if your phone dies in the middle of a Vine, all is not lost.
  • I haven’t discovered a way to link to your profile other than users finding you through the app via name, Twitter account, or email.
  • Use the explore tab to search for people, trending hashtags, or popular Vines including Editor’s Picks, Popular Now, and Trending.
  • By nature of the app, creativity is gold. Be as creative with your 6-seconds as you want incorporating text and different sounds.

Lastly, have you seen this Vine resume by Dawn Siff?  And, she actually landed a job!

What do you think of the Vine app? Have you created any Vines already? If so, please share them with The Workshop and follow us on Vine (at) The Workshop.

 

 

 

 

Six degrees of separation on the last train to Tangier, Part 1

The following post and its opinions are that of the author and not of the Community Media Workshop. 

Mohamed and I were engulfed in conversation about social media, development and civic society in Morocco after meeting with the Minister of Communication in Rabat. We walked at a steady pace towards the train station under the burning sun and the soft humid air channelling our ideas back and forth about the opportunities constitutional reform would bring to the country. We were separated from our group and would be meeting up with Erin, Whitney and our young, tall and talented translator Noureddine to board the last train to Tangier–north of the country and just south of Spain. Read the rest of this entry »

Kindle your social media power: Pinterest explained

I’m really excited about our upcoming Making Media Connections Conference. I’ll be leading a half-day workshop on Social Media planning… covering practical  and strategic approaches to social media for nonprofits. In this workshop we will be covering the core concepts and exercises from my semester long course on social media at Columbia College Chicago. We’ll go over preparing your social media policy, steps towards creating your plan and get the big picture to help you approach the tools the right way. If you haven’t registered already, do it now!

Pinterest has gained much popularity in the past few months and will be one platform we will be talking about in our workshop. Below is a primer on the new social platform (and an excerpt from her final course essay) written by one of my students in my Social Media & PR Strategies course this past Winter. 

Hope to see you at #mmc2012!

– Demetrio Maguigad

 

Pinterest Explained 

Guest post by Shelby Gardner, Columbia College Chicago, Intern at Student PIRGs

 

 

Pinterest… What is it?

Pinterest is as a virtual bulletin board to categorize and ‘pin’ things that interests an individual. The Next Web (TNW) describes it as “a way for people to ‘window shop’ for anything whether it’s a physical object or an intangible object like quotes.”

To grasp how Pinterest works, you need to know three terms. Pin, Repin, and Boards.

Pin: an image added to Pinterest either from a link, a site, or uploaded image that can include captions. Repin: once something is pinned, it can be repined by other Pinterest users, a big factor that leverages the site. Board: this is where your pins are. You can have separate boards for various subjects. Users set up boards of pins that fit together. When a board is created, the user must categorize it into one of the 13 default categories. The user is free to name the board what ever they desire.

The most popular pins category on Pinterest is Food & Drink, then DIY & Crafts, and third is Women’s Apparel. However, the statistics of most popular boards are very different, with the top ranked as Remaining Categories and Home and Décor second.

The main page is where you browse pins via thumbnails, which allows top users to grow even more popular. With 32 different topic areas, users can browse everything from fitness to art and science. Users can like or comment on other pins. The average activity of popular ‘Pinners’ consists of 2,600 pins, 33 boards, and following around 400 users. Pinners can use the site to purchase things.  About 20% of users have purchased items they found on someone’s Pinboard.

15 Tips and Tricks

Read the rest of this entry »

Linkedin for nonprofits

Guest post by Marissa Wasseluk

Having worked with nonprofit communicators to create social media policies and plans, it has come to my attention Linkedin oftentimes gets overlooked. Many nonprofit communicators know that it’s an important part of a social media plan, but they’re not sure exactly how or why to use it (sound like a familiar conundrum?).

I talked with Bryan Breckenridge, the Account Executive for LinkedIn Nonprofit Solutions about this trend, and expressed the importance of networking both in person and online. Take a look at our conversation!

 

I like to say Linkedin is the “diamond in the social media rough”.

Some advantages to adding Linkedin to your nonprofit’s social media plan:

  • A presence on Linkedin puts your nonprofit in front of new donors
  • It connects corporate donors to your cause
  • It can help you find new possible board members!
  • It’s a new and different social channel that provides new opportunities of exposure!

If you’d like to pick Bryan’s brain about how to add Linkedin to your social media communications and best practices for its use, come say hello to him at Making Media Connections this June 14, 2012, where he’ll be the keynote speaker!

Join us this year at our annual Making Media Connections Conference! You can also join the conversation on Twitter by following @npcommunicator and the #mmc2012 hashtag. Click here to register for the conference!

Fanning the flames of your communications

The Workshop is excited to announce the lineup for Making Media Connections 2012, our nonprofit communications conference that brings journalists and nonprofit leaders together to talk about news that matters. This year’s conference “Fanning the Flames of Your Communications” will take place on June 14. LinkedIn’s Bryan Breckenridge will keynote the conference and share information about how nonprofits can use the powerful social media tool to tell their stories.

The morning session will consist of half-day workshops on topics ranging from how to fire up your communications plan to kindling the power of social media to blogging around the digital bonfire. The afternoon breakouts will cover topics including how to write sizzling headlines and subject lines, meeting around the metro news camp fire and fueling the flames of mobiles apps. Panelists include Cate Cahan, WBEZ; David Schalliol, Gapers Block; Michael Hoffman, See3; Deidra White, Channel 2; Valerie Denney, Valerie Denney Communications; and more.

To see a complete list of workshops and sessions, visit the Making Media Connections website.

Register for the conference before April 30 to get a reduced rate! We hope to see you there.

Lessons learned from Social Media Bootcamp

Guest post by Marissa Wasseluk, New Media Associate

I’ve found that most organizations know they need to have a social media presence, but are unsure how to utilize social media tools to get their message across. What most don’t understand is that there is a philosophy behind social media communications and strategy behind its utilization.

The Workshop heard the outcry for a comprehensive look at this emerging, ever-changing communications platform (it sounded kind of like a kitten stuck up in a distant tree). We responded by creating a three-part course that delves into the world of social media to help break down and understand the medium and how to use it effectively.

hang in der, kitteh.

Thus, Social Media Bootcamp was born.  Adapted from social media trainings the Workshop has done in the past, we covered the following:

Day 1 – Introduction to Social Media Policy & Plan
Participants were asked to put into question their communications goals, and why social media will help them acheive those goals. Ask yourself, “Who am I talking to? How will I address this audience?” Explore, “What is a social media policy? How is it different from a plan and why do I need both?”

This was the week we played the social media game. I love the social media game because everyone wins.

Day 2 – Utilizing Tools & Tactics
This week we made the link between legend media and new media. You may not see it at first, but there is one. Best practices for the social engagement on Twitter, Facebook, & blogs were covered.

Tip of the week: keywords are just that – WORDS THAT ARE KEY TO YOUR MESSAGES. Analyze your goals and listen to your audience to find your keywords and draw upon them to start and join conversations on social media platforms!

Day 3 – Measuring Impact
Participants were introduced to tools like Hootsuite and Sprout Social and how to use them to understand their audience. Finding influencers and engaging them, as well as workflow were covered.

We also learned a little bit about SEO using the power of music.

I find that because the nature of social media is that it is ever-changing, the more I explore on the topic, the more I want to know.

Find out what can you learn from Social Media Bootcamp by listening in on and/or join the conversation on Twitter and following the hashtag #smb2012 . For more communications tips and tricks, you can also “like” the Workshop on Facebook or sign up for our bi-weekly newsletter!

If you just asked yourself what a hashtag is or how one uses it, I highly encourage you to join us for the Making Media Connections conference or contact us about a custom training!

Happy communicating!

Communicating, advocating and social media marketing for the public health sector

Public health communicators are understanding more and more that their social media marketing and advocacy work starts with developing a clear analysis of the people they hope to engage and develop relationships with, creating an effective social media policy to guide their work and a plan to reach success. Their job is unique as they need to consider their communications approach as an advocate for health issues and position their brand, products and services in a social market. When do you play the role of a health advocate and a social marketeer? Where do they overlap? Is there a difference?

These were some of the questions that framed our training session at the UIC School of Public Health. In this training Read the rest of this entry »

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