bird on the wireWhatever stage of your social innovation journey you are on, there is another kind of social you cannot ignore.Social media—it has become a kind of currency for determining success, reach, and engagement. And just as you invest time into building your idea and social venture, you may be advised to develop and diversify your social media portfolio.

Tipping Icebergs
A website, blog, Facebook fan page, Twitter account, Linkedin presence are just the tip of the iceberg in determining how to make a digital footprint that your future fans can find and follow. There are numerous ways to creatively engage audiences online and an equal number of ways to analytically gauge your social media reach and effectiveness.
Don’t Get Overwhelmed
Managing, creating, and curating content could easily consume most of your time—forget that you have a cause to address and business to develop. Instead of trying to master all of the big and small aspects of social media for social innovation, focus on a few ways to start.
What you may find, as I have found, is that much of the depth of understanding comes gradually and organically. It is by using multiple social media platforms that you may find yourself asking…”I wonder if there’s an app that can help with this” or “has anyone else faced this situation?”—questions that will not just lead you to a temporary fix but to longer-term solutions.
Frustration Moments are Learning Opportunities
Inserting new html might break a page. You may find your comment sections being power-spammed, or you might find yourself in a Twitter rut.
There’s a level of engagement and use that is required to reach a moment of frustration. And just as you did when you couldn’t get past a tricky level of Super Mario Bros., you’ll have to keep trying and assess your pain points before you can hope to rescue the princess.
10 Social Media Tools for Social Innovation
Here are a few tangible resources you can turn to—as a starting point, or a go-to resource when you hit a digital wall.
Feel free to add your own ‘best picks’ or explain how any of the listed resources helped your social venture in the comment section below.

1. Social Media Examiner Blog. I recently came across this site from a link to a post on ways non-profits can benefit from social media. The site delivers its tagline “Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle” through posts useful information and vivid images on tools and industry findings about ways to improve your social media reach.

2. Social Media for Nonprofits Seminar. If you learn best in a live setting, you may choose to kick off your social media knowledge (or develop it further) through the popular day-long seminar which brings together non-profit leaders with social media experts. I will be attending the event in SF area this week and look forward to reporting back on the experience.

3. Nonprofit Management 101: A Complete and Practical Guide for Leaders and Professionals. The emcee of the Social Media for Nonprofits Seminar served as executive director of the Craigslist Foundation and edited this book on managing non-profit resources, including social media.

4. Meetup Groups. After a point of experimenting with new techniques, reading articles, blogs, and books—you may find yourself just wanting to be in a room with other people who are facing the same questions and issues with their social media. Meetup groups may be your answer. For example, I am looking into migrating from Blogger to WordPress, and just from a quick search on Meetup I not only found a number of WordPress groups but also learned about a great seminar on the ins and outs of that platform.

5. LinkedIn Groups. If you want the digital version of a Meetup group, join a few LinkedIn groups related to your social innovation interest or social media needs. Group members share articles, upcoming events, and new research—and with the active comment sections you may even find it to be a useful networking opportunity. My tip: start out with a few groups, otherwise you may feel inundated with useful information.

6. Social Media Job Descriptions. Here’s an odd one, that makes sense. How can you learn about what social media tools industries are using? A great start is to look at social media job descriptions for social ventures you appreciate or respect—they often list the tools, platforms, and analytics that they expect candidates to be familiar with. It’s a great way to ‘check your notes’ to see if you are using those tools (or are familiar with them) too.

7. Conferences and UnConferences. I love live events—the idea of listening to information, laughing at jokes, and talking to people before and after and ‘in the hallways’ fascinates me. And I have met some great, inspiring people at various events. My suggestion is to take every opportunity to take your social network live.

8. Book Talks. Another great way to get in the know is to check with your local bookstore about upcoming book talks. There are bound to be a few related to social media, marketing, or management. Being able to hear an author talk about his/her experience in writing a book and the questions that the book answers is not only informative and engaging, but you may find yourself in great company.

9. Fiverr.com. If you are looking to complete a specific social media task, you may want to tap a fiverr member. The site lists tasks that a person will complete for $5. While you probably won’t be able to get your entire website re-designed, you may be able to have someone do an SEO review of your site or send you a list of the most valuable keywords. If you are a budding operation, outsourcing a few tasks may make your time more effective.

10. Informal Intros. I have found social innovators to be a remarkably open and helpful group of folks. If you were ever wondering “how did they do that” with regards to a website, social media strategy, cause marketing, or audience engagement—you may want to just ask. By email, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook comment—you may find that an informal intro to be a great way to connect and share useful information.

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4 replies
  1. seo reseller
    seo reseller says:

    Great learning resources for those who are looking to or currently into social media management. It's a promising new career opportunity that seems to have a bright future.

    Reply
  2. Erin Timothy
    Erin Timothy says:

    SEO services have come a long way. We can now call a certain part of it Social Media Marketing and still be part of your SEO campaign. For me, the better approach is not thinking about your SEO link building method when you're interacting directly with clients. Social media centers on creating client-company bond which further improves your website's brand.

    Reply

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