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Hey Beth!
I'm an intern at a non-profit organization,, and my position is "Social Media Maven". My main job is to use social medias as a way to generate word of mouth referrals as opposed to traditional advertising.
I've been utilizing Twitter and Facebook primarily and have run out of ways to generate new followers & friends.
Thankfully for this blog, I'm anxious to try new techniques!!!


Thanks for shedding (lots of) light on the idea of thought leadership via social media. The concrete examples of how foundations tweet thought leadership is especially helpful. As a nonprofit (The Wellness Community Valley/Ventura) we are inherently tied in with foundations and it's great to get such insight into their strategies, and to think about how we can use some of these strategies ourselves.

Johanna Bates

Hi Beth,
Thank you for this. I am loving this post--it's fabulous. But I've been thinking for days about this post and I am left with a question.

My org is working with a foundation partner right now as they grapple with their social media strategy. They expressed to us that they want to be less top-down in their communications. Yes, foundations are thought leaders and do have access to amazing resources and see things through an incredibly knowledgeable lens--it's valuable to share these better with their grantees & communities. But some of the Tweeting you cite above sounds a whole lot like foundations broadcasting top-down information, just via Twitter, with a little more listening mixed in. Which is not a bad thing in itself. Maybe that's all some foundations should really be doing with social media.

But the Web 2.0 concept--at its best--is about balancing things out a bit more between those who have power and money and those who, traditionally, have less of a voice, is it not? So, can a foundation use social media to promote grantees' expertise, along with their own--ideally in their grantees' own first-hand voices? I think that's what I'd like to see happen more. I have been delving more into everything you link to here, but if you can think of a foundation that's doing this very well, I'd love to hear about 'em.

Johanna Bates

P.S. I see that Skoll's Social Edge site is doing a fantastic job with this, but I wonder if it's a bit easier to get entrepreneurs to share in this way. The Social Edge blogs are very inspiring, in any case.

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