November 22, 2011

Free tools to help geo-target your socialsphere

geo-targeting

Use MarketMeSuite, Meetup & Foursquare to locate your closest supporters

Target audience: Nonprofits, NGOs, cause organizations, social enterprises, businesses, brands, social media managers.

Guest post by Nikki Peters
Community Support Manager, MarketMeSuite

If you have a Twitter account, you’ve likely used Twitter search to locate supporters and other like-minded organizations that are tweeting about topics and causes you care about. While keyword searches can be useful in increasing your audience and even gaining supporters, it’s also hugely time consuming. It becomes quite labor intensive to conduct a local search through Twitter for supporters in your area, and it can be difficult to keep track of replies and streamline your results.

Fortunately, there are other methods and tools for conducting targeted searches. This article will look at how your organization can incorporate geo-targeting so you can not only interact with people who are interested in your cause but also those who are local enough to participate and get involved in person.

Geo-targeting on Twitter with MarketMeSuite

Being able to locate tweets that have been sent within an “X mile radius” really does mean you can restrict your searches to only the most relevant distances and topics for you. Determining the location of tweets is particularly helpful if your nonprofit is holding an event in a town and wants to get locals involved. One method for locating tweets is with the UK-based social media dashboard MarketMeSuite. In addition to having all your social network accounts in one place, MarketMeSuite lets you target your tweet searches to location and specific words using a feature called “Reply Campaigns.”

You can target within 1,000 miles of a specific location. All you have to do is type in either the city, county, zip code or postal code to get the location of your choice. The keyword selection also means you can target the words that you feel will be most used in your niche topic.

Here’s an example of the Reply Campaign feature:

reply campaign

This type of geo-targeted tweeting is a tremendous time saver. For example, if you’re planning a local event and struggling to reach potential participants or sponsors, you can use geo-targeting to create a campaign within a 20-mile radius. As nice as it is to chat with someone who would love to attend but lives in Norway, you still need to fill up your event in New York. The results are pretty staggering: Eighty-five percent of replies sent using this method elicit some kind of reply.

You can further reduce the noise by banning words from your results with the “Negative Keywords” feature. This means you can tailor your search for only positive tweets about your subject choice. Add as many as you like to make sure that you get the best results; you are much more likely to have people respond and participate in your event simply because they are close enough to be interested. Continue reading

October 27, 2010

Tips on how to mobilize your supporters

George Weiner
George Weiner, CTO of DoSomething, during our panel

 
JD LasicaWhen you moderate a panel at BlogWorld Expo, ironically, sometimes you’re the last person to blog about it.

Such is the case with the Oct. 16 “Mobilizing your social network” panel with this all-star lineup: Andres Glusman of Meetup.com, Justin Perkins of Care2, George Weiner of DoSomething and Giselle Diaz Campagna of Free Speech TV. There were some valuable resources mentioned, so I’ll try to assemble them here into a neat package.

• JD Lasica (that’s me) offered a one-stop shop for resources on how nonprofits and cause organizations can use social tools: http://bit.ly/mobilize — a landing page that aggregates resources on social networking tutorials, handouts, top fund-raising tools and much more. This includes the short presentation I gave during the panel on steps to mobilize your supporters. Also, download this free flyer on 12 steps to mobilize your cause: bit.ly/12steps-flyer

• Andres Glusman of Meetup.com (8 million members) offered a powerful presentation that went beyond showing off the organization’s cool Meetup Everywhere feature — a way for you to mobilize your constituency. “Recognize people who are active on your behalf,” Andres urged the crowd. “Create a regular routine that can be annual, quarterly or monthly. Build a routine that people can set their watch to, to build up momentum around an organization.”

See Meetup Everywhere on Tumblr for best practices and examples.

A Mashable meetup in Greece.

• Justin Perkins offered this frogloop article about cutting-edge integrated social media strategies and multi-channel social network campaigns. (By the way, Care2 is up to 14 million members now and still growing like gangbusters.)

• Justin cited the campaign Care2 did for climate change advocates 1Sky. They recruited an email list of 10,000 people, used data mining to determine which Facebook and Twitter users would be most the most active and created a funnel that let to five or six precinct captains who canvased door to door and organizing house meetings on behalf of a campaign. I may have gotten a detail or two wrong but the overall point was that organizations should take steps to move from online action to offline activity.

• Justin also pointed to this article on how to bring social network avatars to life and an essay on how slacktivism is a misnomer.

Giselle Diaz Campagna offered to work with nonprofits interested in having their stories told through video on the freespeech.org site and DirecTV Channel 348 and Dish Network Channel 9415. Don’t step away from controversy, she advised. “We loved it when Glenn Beck did a piece on us,” she said.

George Weiner gave a passionate presentation that showed how social media and video could be used as part of an educational campaign to curtail violence against teen girls and young women. One out of three teens will be abused online. If your nonprofit has any programs for young people, you should collaborate with DoSomething.

• Several of the audience members were with political organizations rather than nonprofits, such as two representatives of evoiceamerica, which makes it easy to email your elected reps.

• Justin also pointed to this resource of 17 nonprofit benchmark studies.

Other highlights from BlogWorld’s nonprofit track

I was darting in and out of sessions during BlogWorld — juggling interviews I was giving, interviews I was conducting and networking in the hallway — but managed to capture a few other highlights:

• Learned more about mobile fundraising service Mobilecause from its CEO, Douglas Plank.

70% of all US households donated to a nonprofit last year, totaling $227 billion.

• According to Douglas: 70% of all US households donated to a nonprofit last year, totaling $227 billion given by individuals. 7% of the US gross domestic product comes through the nonprofit sector. 8% of Americans work in the nonprofit sector.

Mark Horvath of InvisiblePeople.tv led a great discussion-in-the-round. Snippets: He recommends YouTube for video hosting because of its nonprofit program, while others said nonprofits should use Vimeo because the site supports Creative Commons licenses and lets you actually download the damn video. (In either case, read their Terms of Use.)

• Horvath said YouTube turned over some of its front page programming to the subject of homelessness one day this year, and fully one quarter of the views came from mobile devices.

• One participant recounted the funny story of trying to live-stream the CTO of the federal government from his Washington, DC offices. “Live streaming from a government office? One of the most difficult things in the world to accomplish.”

• Quote of the conference came from Mark Horvath, talking about importance of audio in any video. “I was once told by an audio guy, ‘Without us you’re just surveillance.’ I will go with audio over video.” Excellent! Continue reading