Social Media Can Be A Vital Media Outlet


Today’s social era has resulted in significant changes to the media environment. Gone almost completely are community affairs departments at radio and television stations, and gone are large writing staffs at many newspapers. What remains is YOU!

As a nonprofit or communications professional, it’s your responsibility to get news coverage, write the story, and pitch it in such a way that TV, radio, news services, and print media want to share your news. But don’t despair. Social media can be ONE of your nonprofit’s media outlets. This informative seminar featured a panel of experts co-sponsored by the NCM Network and the African American Board Leadership Institute (AABLI). Attendees learned how social media can educate and engage a nonprofit audience, make a nonprofit newsworthy, and increase visibility. SEE EVENT RECAP BELOW PHOTO AND PANEL LIST!


* Kevin Boie – Director, Digital Operations, KABC-TV ABC7 (@KevinBoie)

* Juntae DeLane – Digital Brand Manager, USC (@JuntaeDeLane)

* Monique Stennis – Social Media Manager, University of Redlands (@MoniqueStennis)

* Debbie Laskey, MBA – Brand Marketing & Social Media Strategist, Various Nonprofits (and NCM Network Board Member) (@DebbieLaskeyMBA)

* Victoire “Vickie” Prothro, Moderator – Manager of Communications and Marketing, AABLI (and NCM Network Board Member)

NCM Network thanks Diane Manuel, a seminar attendee, for her event recap. Her highlights follow below, and her professional details are provided at the end.


We’re thinking about it. It’s haphazard. My boss thinks it’s a dumb idea.

Does this sound similar to discussions in your organization? This seminar helped us to think about how we effectively use or don’t use social media to promote our organizations and their missions.

The NCM Network panel represented a cross-section of organizations and consultants who shared their ideas about best practices for the use of social media in nonprofits.

Here were five major takeaways:

1.    What’s your goal? Create a strategy.
Like anything we do (creating new programs or raising money), to effectively use social media requires a goal and a strategy. And, if you have multiple programs, teams, departments, etc., it’s imperative to get everyone on board. The mission of the organization should be clear. Your colleagues should be working collaboratively.

2.    Who’s watching? Who’s reading?
Take a moment and think about your audience. You probably have many. Donors, clients, journalists, even colleagues. Do your research and get some ideas on how to best engage your audiences. Look at similar institutions. Watch what they’re doing.

3.    Share your work. Tell a story. Engage your audience.
We all do something special. Social media and its numerous platforms allow us to share our uniqueness with extremely wide audiences. Think about your story. How is it best communicated: pictures, stories, short and interesting taglines? How do you want your audience to respond? How do you want people to feel? Do you want them to take action?

4.    What time is it?
Think about when you share your posts? Have a plan. Track your results. Think about when your audience is online. Post accordingly. This should be part of your strategy. Your posts should not be random.

5.    Monitor and evaluate.
Review your work. Monitor your views. The advantage of social media is that you haven’t spent thousands of dollars on print material. Your commitment should be improvement. Keep improving, refreshing. Keep it new.

By Diane Manuel, Financial Advisor, Urban Wealth Management
Founding Member, Angelenos 4LA Giving Circle
Advisory Board Member, WriteGirl

TOP Image Credit: Ocular

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