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« Why Should Nonprofits Embrace Social Media? The why of social media | Main | Critical Friends and A Reflection Process for Working Wikily »


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LaDonna Coy

Hi Beth, I couldn't agree more in terms of a strategy and have been doing some thinking and working along these lines with some colleagues in Kansas. We have adopted a process (SPF) that starts with assessment and capacity building so one thing we are working on is developing a technology assessment both of the social media variety and the technical as in some of the things John has mentioned. We have been collecting our ideas (a jumble at the moment) on a wiki page here. And just this morning I posted a shorter list of emergent questions around communications that seem to keep surfacing here. In my way of thinking the flow of information is central to what we do with media. I look forward to following this development and chiming in as well as learning from this group's experience. Thank you for making the thinking and process so open and accessible.



This is a great question. I work with nonprofit overnight camps that are stretched really thin as far as resources and technical know-how. We are helping the camps use technology for fundraising and alumni outreach. I know that these tools offer an inexpensive way for the camps to reach out and engage their alumni in a meaningful way. However, I definitely have to constantly remind myself that not every tool out there is right for every situation. Camps (and other nonprofits) need to fully understand their goals and determine which tool(s) will help them reach those goals. And they also have to remember that although these tools are free in terms of dollars, they require a real investment in time commitment. I've found that the best strategy for most of the camps is to choose one or two tools and really focus their energies and efforts there.

I'm interested to hear what others have to say on this topic as well. Most importantly, we have to remind ourselves of these limitations and not "drink the kool-aid" ourselves!


I always though the "don't drink the kool aid" reffered to the Kool Aid used by Ken Kesey and the Merry Prankster's for their Acid Tests as documented by Tom Wolfe in Electric Kool Aid Acid Test.

Anywho I am really getting a lot from the sharing of your process Beth, I am following with interest. Dean


Well, it's through web2 that I knew the expression about Kool Aid :). I think this is a great question, I always say I don't want everyone and every organisation to blog or wiki, I just want them to know the tools so that they can make an informed choice. Maybe the question should be whether you'd continue with it once putting a video on youtube is no longer fashionable? (I'm never fashionable, so I don't have to worry about my own reasons!)

Johanna Bates

Hey Beth, I love the avoiding the Kool-Aid piece (and the wiki!). For us, the problem has been that we're excited about Web 2.0, but our constituents are not there yet. So we've drunk the Kool-Aid, but we have to be very strategic about how we push it on our constituents. And that often means using old skool tools. I just blogged about it here: Walking the Line Between Web 2.0 and Old Skool.

danielle brigida

I think going into social media thinking it is the answer to everything is the wrong idea. We've got to keep using traditional methods while learning about the new tools available. I think a lot of nonprofits see the success of some of their peers and assume social media will be the same for them when it isn't. Some np's do get lucky and some will not. I think if we had real expectations about social media we wouldn't feel so saddened when it doesn't go as planned. Anyway...for those of you who haven't had a sip of the Kool Aid, or have and hated the tase (or you are just sick of buzzwords) play this:

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