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Beth started out presenting some ideas for networked nonprofits (NP) in order to create a better world through the transparency and extension functions of NP’s. She finds that there are 2 types of NP’s: those born networked; and traditional NP’s changing to become networked.
Beth frames social media networking in lessons learned and best practices are based in Being (i.e. the hard stuff-changing the way we work by understanding networks, moving and changing; and in Doing: the fun stuff (crowd sourcing, going from friending to funding. Friending to funding means: Social media is not a spectator sport. The goal is to bring up the level of engagement through conversation and inclusion so they start talking and sharing your message to their circle. It’s branding and personalizing on steroids. Beth used the example of SurfRider.org (www.surfrider.org/). They built their network by sharing control. Theif Fb page has over 700 pages put together by their chapters. They released tcontrol over a strict branding look in favor of reaching thier goals through mobilizing people. Friending to funding will happen if you learn how to constructively let go of some control in order to better achieve your goals.
The two part process to networking is a process of moving from Being, and then Doing:
1. Creating a social culture requires leadership while sharing the life of the organization through transparency, conversation to create an ease and comfort people.
2. To share the goals and work of the NonProfit you need a Social Media Rulebook so everyone is on the same page. Two sections: States your philosophy of sharing; provide an Operationalization Manual of best practices.
She uses her e-Mediat project (www.bethkanter.org/e–mediat-lunch/) as an example of a network capacity building program for NGO’s in the Arab world through sharing. Her work with team leaders from 6 different countries. The project is an example of global learning with0ut barriers. The trainees and director can talk in realtime through an online translator. The Wiki with all the materials has lots of examples and resources that you can use to learn from (emediat.wikispaces.com/).
Social media will take on a life of its own as it moves through a crawl-walk-run-fly process. To understand the networked mindset look at The Connected Citizens Report (http://www.bethkanter.org/connected-citizens/). Beth finds this paper valuable for the analyses of example networks and the tools and tips for Network-Centric Grantmaking. Diana Scearce is the report author(http://www.allisonfine.com/2011/04/06/connected-citizens-report-released/) .
Overall Beth’s message is that if a nonprofit is relevant, you don’t have to try too hard to become networked. On the other hand social media is constantly changing, so it takes time to keep up: 20-30 minutes/day is a good way to stay tuned in. Each level of social media takes more time for content creation, social community management, and cross platform networking. Join NonProfit Technology Network (www.nten.org/). Sign up for their newsletter, use their resources, and attend their conferences. They will help you keep up.