Thursday, February 12, 2009

IDEX's Social Media Strategy

Share IDEX's approach and successes with a broader audience by finding key influencers and engaging in debate about the issue we are working on. The goal would be to increase web traffic by 1000% in the first 6 months.

Target Audience:
Other non-profit organizations and bloggers working in our areas.
Our existing audience has a diverse age range, but we estimate it to be more heavily weighted in the 40+. This group and boomers are gradually spending more time on social networks, but by engaging influencers and building the identity of being seen as an expert in area we will be well positioned as they do come online.

IDEX would match image and brand on website, reinforce with email and online activities. Monitor keywords to hone SEO. Print mail would tell the same story and encourage people to find us online

Culture Change:
IDEX typically shares stories with our audience, but rarely is seen as experts in the field outside of conferences and our peers. It would be a shift to start doing this.

A SMART plan and ways to demonstrate ROI, will be key to implementing this plan, and making any changes.

In the beginning staff, board, and volunteers will be provided with guidelines on how to engage online and reply to comments. The Communications Director will offer relevant trainings and be the point person driving this campaign.

Most staff are on Facebook and LinkedIn and understand how these can work and are excited to explore the potential. No one who is uncomfortable will be forced to be online, however tools, support and encouragement will be available.

The Communications Director already allocates part of her day to listening via Twitter, RSS and Google Alerts. IDEX blogs 2+ times a week and participates on Twitter and Facebook. With additional support from volunteers and interns this will become more manageable.

Tools & Tactics:
Listening - RSS Reader, Google Alerts, Twitter, other Non-Profit blogs and emails.
Participation - active presence on Twitter and with bloggers so developing a better idea of who is out there and what they are saying.
Sharing our story - this is ongoing as we have material. Need to develop ideas to create content that can demonstrate our expertise.
Spreading the buzz - to be done!
Online Networking - some networking has been done on Facebook,, YouTube and Twitter. With a specific goal and plan these can become more cohesive.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Pre-workshop Activity

IDEX (International Development Exchange)
IDEX is a San Francisco based non-profit organization that promotes sustainable solutions to poverty by providing long-term grants and access to resources to locally run organizations in Africa, Asia and Latin America.

We build strong local economies by funding initiatives in poor communities designed to:
* empower women
* care for the environment
* promote local solutions to poverty

Our funding is used to bolster existing projects: great solutions by locals who have the trust of their neighbors and the knowledge of what is most needed in their own communities.

Gillian Wilson, Communications Director
Gill has been involved with IDEX since 2002 when she joined the organization as an intern. Originally from the UK, she has lived in the SF Bay Area since 2000, when she moved her to study at San Francisco State University for her MBA. Gill began her non-profit career as an intern with IDEX before becoming Operations Manager and has been in her current position of Communications Director since 2005. Prior to moving to the US, Gill worked in the financial services industry. Gill has a LLB law degree from the University of Reading in the UK. Find out why IDEX inspires Gill.

Social Media
On behalf of IDEX, I've been exploring social media in a variety of ways:
IDEX's Blog
Facebook Page

Personal Social Media Experience
I'm hooked. I'm active on Facebook, have become addicted to Twitter but have yet to fully realized the potential of LinkedIn. I keep planning to start blogging, but have yet to take the plunge.

My Workshop Goals
I'm convinced social media can be effective for many organizations and I want IDEX to make the most of social media to broaden our reach. I would like to explore a better framework for using social media and know more about best practices and how to develop a cohesive social media communications plan.

Key for both myself and my colleagues is getting to grips with tools to evaluate impact and measure success (or failure) of social media. This would make me more effective in telling IDEX's story via social media, and also encourage greater recognition and support from within IDEX for social media.