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3 Reasons You Should Absolutely Be Interested In Pinterest

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social mediaGuest post by Julia Campbell 

If you market your brand online, there is a good chance you have heard of the third most popular social networking site – Pinterest.

The photo and video sharing site is exploding in popularity. It has 70 million users, has registered over half a million business accounts and gets 2.5 billion page views per month. Whoa!

Note: Before jumping on any social network, your nonprofit should think about overall fundraising and marketing strategy and staff capacity first, and the tools second (Pinterest is a tool, not a strategy).

That being said, there are many compelling reasons why you should at least be interested in the fasting growing social network out there.

Here are my top three reasons why your brand should absolutely be interested in Pinterest:

  1. Pinterest is growing leaps and bounds. While 71% of online adults use Facebook and 22% use LinkedIn, 21% use Pinterest (more than Twitter at 18% and Instagram at 17%). It’s driving more web traffic to online publishers than Twitter, LinkedIn and Reddit combined.
  1. Pinterest is where the women are. As a general trend, women make up more of the population on most social net working sites – but they make up 80% of active users on Pinterest.

Women at virtually every income level are the driving forces behind household spending. When they give to charity and purchase brand products, they are more likely to spend more and be more loyal to brands.

  1. Pinterest is aspirational, not of the moment. What we pin reflects what we covet, what moves us, what we desire, who we want to be.

It works more like a Vision Board, rather than an off-the-cuff, in-the-moment statement of what we are eating or where we are hanging out. 

Of all the social networks out there, Pinterest posts (called pins) last much longer. Pinterest pins have a half life of over one week! (A tweet is 5-25 minutes; 80 minutes for a Facebook post.)

People pin photos on Pinterest to share with friends and to save for later.

Personally, I pin things that I want to remember and refer to later – fun ideas for crafts and gifts, things to do, articles to read.

You can’t save Facebook posts or tweets (other than the favorite function). In this way, Pinterest is unlike every other social network.

Do you want to learn more ways that you can use Pinterest to promote your brand?

Join me and dozens of other social media experts on May 14th for a day devoted to social media!

In my session, Marketing Your Brand On Pinterest, you will learn why your brand needs to get on Pinterest, now; the difference between a personal profile and a Company profile; examples of brands are kicking butt on Pinterest and why; the nuts and bolts of viral pinning; the qualities of a highly re-pinnable image; ways to integrate your efforts with your other social media platforms.


Meet #UMBSocial Speaker – Dan Morris

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Dan Morris teaching Dan Morris will be joining us on May 14th as one of our featured speakers, and we were lucky enough to get him to sit down for this interview.  

Meet Dan!

1. Tell us a little about yourself and your background?

Dan R Morris, founder of Blogging Concentrated, a nationwide blogging workshop series for Advanced level Bloggers, has been working in the online space since 2004. His career began in the infomercial world helping convert traffic driven from TV and Radio spots into online customers. He has since worked with hundreds of bloggers on perfecting their online revenue strategy utilizing the tools of social media, SEO and web copy.  

2. When did you start to work in social media?

I joined Twitter in 2008 because I’d been driving traffic to the web via TV informercials and needed to figure out the social media side before I got caught behind. It seems now I might have been ahead.

3. How does a typical work day of you look like?

I’ve got 4 kids who have no problem waking me when they wake. . . so sometimes it is 6. Other times my wife intercepts and I get to sleep till 9. Much of the morning is putting out fires, engaging and answering email. 

Then the afternoon I work on the to-do list, run mastermind groups for people who want to get better online. Some days I drive to my parent’s house (because it is super quiet) and will record website review videos or work on curriculum development for my university clients. 

Then after the kids go to bed about 10 I really get the hard core work done till 2:00 a.m. or so. That’s my favorite part of the day.

4. Do you have a role model in social media. Someone who inspires you?

I love how Gary Vaynerchuk creates buzz

I love what Phillip DeFranco does with video and

I love how Frank Kern crafts sales funnels

And I love Robert Cialdini’s research

5. What is the hardest thing about social media?

Revenue production. It’s easy to stay busy, hard to stay focused and purposeful.  

6. What do you see as some up-and-coming trend in social media?

At some point in time I believe the services that manage all social media outlets will take over. Going from Facebook to Twitter to Digg to FoodGawker to Reddit is ridiculous.

7. Can you name us a brand or company that you admire for their great social media strategy/execution?

Apple. Survive and prosper without it. They are a antastic example because they aren’t doing something just to do it. Serve serve serve your audience at all times.

8 Did you make any social media mistakes in the past or is there anything you would avoid in future?

The biggest mistake is thinking that your time is free. Even if you have time to be on Twitter, someone else (like your spouse) is sacrificing time being with you. If you’re not producing results, you’re abusing the time of friends and family.

9. To be successful in social media, you need to ….?

Serve. Serve. Serve. 

10. What is your favorite book and why?

American Ground: Unbuilding the World Trade Center by William Langewiesche

It has nothing to do with social media, but it is an unbelievable tale of project management at its most crazy. Fantastic read. 

11. What is your favorite quote?

There is no should. – Dan R Morris  (that is totally narcissistic but I say it more than anything) 

Blogging Concentrated


12. What is your favorite movie and why?

Il Postino. I absolutely love the depth of character, the simplicity, the music. Makes me happy. 

13. Is there anything else you would like to add that I haven’t included?

I am an Ironman Triathlete (on hiatus) with plans to someday do the Swim Around Key West.  

14. Where can we find more about you and you work? 

Twitter – @DanRMorris

Meet #UMBSocial Speaker – Noah Freeman

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Noah Freeman - Social Fulcrum Noah specializes in social media marketing & ad optimization and works across the firm to support analytics, customer reporting and optimization. Prior to joining Social Fulcrum, Noah built his own Facebook marketing agency. Outside of work, Noah chases his two children and races in Ironman Triathlons.

 1. Tell us a little about yourself and your background? –

 I had a previous career in quantitative finance, and for the past few years have been bringing my quantitative, testing based approached to online customer acquisition.

2. When did you start to work in social media? 

2 years- I started working with my first client on Facebook social, content and paid marketing, and grew the business from there. 

3. How does a typical work day of you look like? 

At a small but constantly growing agency, there’s no such thing as typical! However at any given day/time, you might find me teaching a course on paid placements, meeting with potential clients, setting up conversion tracking for a new project, and/or optimizing an existing Facebook campaign to lower our clients’ cost-per-acquisition. I spend a lot of time drilling down into the minute details of a Facebook Advertising campaign looking for ways to boost its performance, but spend just as much time outside of the office, educating people on what we do.

4. Do you have a role model in social media. Someone who inspires you? 

My social media role model would probably be Gary Vaynerchuk. His small agency has seen amazing success, and he “gets” social in a way that many other “experts” do not. I love his books; particularly how he focuses equally on engagement (which is great) and sales (even better).

5. What is the hardest thing about social media? 

The hardest thing about social media is the need to very quickly adapt to the changes that take place on a regular basis. Algorithms change, best practices change, Facebook Advertising feature change, new platforms become popular, etc. Always being up-to-date on the newest announcements and updates, and being able to pivot client campaigns accordingly in real-time, is a big part of my job.

6. What do you see as some up-and-coming trend in social media? 

The biggest and most relevant trend right now is the movement away from a free or all-organic approach. Advertising options on the most popular platforms have been around for a while, but amidst algorithm changes and an increasingly noisy social media space, its become that much harder to reach people, let alone convert them, without paid promotion. Where advertising and social media marketing were previously separate, the two need to support one another in order for brands to see success online.

7. Can you name us a brand or company that you admire for their great social media strategy/execution? 

Gotta love Oreo! I know that their awesome display of real-time marketing during Super Bowl XLVII is old news by now, but that move was genius and speaks volumes about the culture and pace of their marketing department. In general, Oreo consistently creates perfectly on-brand content for their social media channels that is native to the particular platform (e.g. you won’t see them posting the exact same thing on Facebook and Twitter – so important!) and communicates to their customers that Oreo really gets them.

8. Did you make any social media mistakes in the past or is there anything you would avoid in future?

The biggest thing I would avoid, and recommend that others avoid, in the future is putting all your social media eggs in one basket – or relying too heavily on social media to begin with. Don’t get me wrong – social media is a great way to connect with prospects, keep them engaged, and drive conversions. But we don’t own our social media channels or audiences, and are pretty much always at the mercy of these platforms when it comes to any changes they may implement that make it harder to communicate with customers. A good way to protect yourself and/or your brand against this is to try to convert your social media followers to newsletter subscribers, because this is a list you’ll always own and have control over.

 9. To be successful in social media, you need to ..?

To be successful in social media, you need to understand the primary reasons why people use social media (hint: it’s not to buy your products). People use social media to watch funny cat videos, share photos of their friends, and ultimately communicate something about themselves. So you must be able to implement social media marketing in a way that seamlessly contributes to this user experience; not interrupt or distract from it. 

10. Where can we find more about you and you work?



Meet #UMBSocial Speaker – Eric Fisher

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Eric Fisher 6 Eric Fisher is the Chief Meteorologist at WBZ-TV in Boston, and we are excited that will be joining us at #UMBSocial on May 14th.

1. Tell us a little about yourself and your background?

As a young kid, I was already hooked on weather. I would stand out in the storms, send in reports to the local TV stations, and write down observations in a notebook. Now, I actually get paid to be a geek! I got my B.S. in Atmospheric Science from the University of New York at Albany, and then received my first broadcasting job at WGGB-TV in Springfield, MA. I worked there for 4 years, while also freelancing at WFXT-TV in Boston, MA for a year. In 2010 I moved to Atlanta to work for the Weather Channel and travel all over the country to cover extreme weather. And that brings us up to now, where I accepted an offer to be Chief Meteorologist at WBZ-TV in Boston.

2. When did you start to work in social media?

Like every other college kid my age, I started to use Facebook at school in Albany. At the time, it was just a way to look friends and strangers up. I didn’t actually start using it for work until 2009. That’s when I started a professional facebook profile and slowly started to tweet. Although I never really started to frequently use Twitter until my arrival at the Weather Channel in 2010. I’ve been hooked ever since! I also use Instagram, Vine, and Tout.

3. How does a typical work day of you look like?

Usually I check in on the weather as soon as I wake up, to make sure nothing has changed. I may send out a couple tweets too to keep up online visibility. I often get into work by 130pm, and spend the shift making graphics, forecasting, writing weather blogs, doing radio hits, taping forecasts for, sending out Twitter updates on things I find interesting or important, and actually delivering forecasts on the news! I leave the office around 1145pm. There are many days where this is all preceded by school visits, shooting stories, or other speaking engagements.Eric Fisher

4. Do you have a role model in social media. Someone who inspires you?

Jim Cantore is the man when it comes to weather and social media. He’s good at engaging people, letting his personality show, and knowing what’s a good tweet and what isn’t. He won’t waste your time with garbage information or clutter. And he’s by far the most followed Meteorologist in the country.

5. What is the hardest thing about social media?

The most difficult thing is figuring out what will catch fire and what won’t. There’s a certain science to how many tweets you send out, what time of day you send them out, how many characters you use, what hashtag you use, the language you use, etc. All of these have to work in tandem to have a successful online presence.

6. What do you see as some up-and-coming trend in social media?

Photos and video. I have to see it. It’s almost useless to send anything out without a photo or video inside of it. I also think location services will continue to grow so that as you post thoughts or information it will be aggregated into a more useful collection of data to interact with others.

7. Can you name us a brand or company that you admire for their great social media strategy/execution?

I’m biased because I worked there, but the Weather Channel is always rated as one of the strongest brands in the country and there’s a good reason for it. They have excellent presence online, and a lot of that is due not only to the visual nature of their business, but also the importance of timely weather information.Eric Fisher

8 Did you make any social media mistakes in the past or is there anything you would avoid in future? 

The thing I have to be most careful about in daily life is helping false information spread. There are a LOT of fake photos out there in the weather-sphere, and it takes a moment to sit back, examine a photo you’re sent, look at the shadows, look at the radar, and figure out if it’s real or not. This involves reverse searches and all sorts of other tactics, too. I have been fooled before, even with all this.

9. To be successful in social media, you need to ….? 

Engage your audience. Don’t just throw stuff out there, respond to people when they want to interact.

10. What is your favorite book and why?

Eric Fisher I read constantly and I’m not sure I can come up with a favorite! But I tend to like books that broaden my understanding of worlds I don’t operate in (like the military, politics, areas of science that I don’t necessarily have a lot of experience in). I think it’s important to read about things outside your typical life to gain perspective.

11. Where can we find more about you and you work?


5 Reasons You Need A Social Media Strategy for Your Nonprofit

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PinterestGuest post by Julia Campbell 

There is no doubt about it – social media has changed the game in terms of how people communicate, share information and learn about new things in their lives. 

With 73% of online adults using at least one social network and almost half (42%) of all online adults using multiple platforms, nonprofits that do not embrace this tectonic shift will get left behind.

Nonprofits are jumping on social channels in greater numbers.  The most important social media platforms for nonprofits are Facebook (95%), Twitter (64%), YouTube (38%), and LinkedIn (26%).

However, some nonprofit boards and staff members are still skeptical and even fearful of jumping into the social media ocean.

Here are just 5 reasons why you need a social media strategy for your organization:

1)     You need to communicate with your donors and supporters where they are.

In her great new book Mobile for Good, nonprofit social media expert Heather Mansfield explains that nonprofits now have to engage and interact with five different generations of supporters.

Social media participation crosses the majority of these five generations. The fastest growing demographic on Twitter is the 55-64 year age bracket.

Not only that, social media has completely changed and revolutionized how people of all ages communicate and how they consume information. For a nonprofit organization to stick their head in the sand and simply deny that this revolution exists does a disservice to the mission of the organization.

2)     The numbers don’t lie. 

  • 57% of Facebook users “Like” a charity or cause on Facebook so they can publicly show support of it to their friends.
  • 47% of Americans discover and/or learn more about causes they care about via social media and online channels.
  • 55% of those who follow, like and otherwise engage with a nonprofit on social media channels have been inspired to “take further action” (and 59% of this 55% donate money).
  • The average donation made via social media is $59 and growing every year.

3)     Visual storytelling is the new marketing and fundraising.

We all know that statistics are not nearly as compelling as stories. 

  • St. Baldrick’s is using success stories and personal testimonials on Facebook to raise thousands of dollars – and they only post a few times a week to Facebook.
  • Muttville Dog Rescue has used Facebook to increase their adoptions and raise awareness about fostering dogs, all based on storytelling.
  • The Wenham Museum in Wenham, MA wanted to reach a younger audience, and actively uses Pinterest& Instagram to post information on the stories behind the exhibits and the artists featured in their collections.

4)     You are more likely to succeed if you have a plan.

Many nonprofit staff are so focused on putting out fires every single day their eyes glaze over when you bring up adding one more thing.

The thought of feeding the social media machine can seem overwhelming. However, if there is a plan in place and a strategy in place, it may be better received.

Use my free social media calendar template to get started and create a plan for how it will all get done, and attend UMass Boston’s Social Media Day for my session, 10 Steps to a Successful Social Media Strategy for Nonprofits!

5)     Engaging with supporters is NEVER a waste of time.

Remember that spreading the word about your nonprofit and your work is not a waste of time.

Start small and grow from there. Do not attempt to be on more than two social networks if you are just starting out and do not have a dedicated social media staff person.

Begin with what you are most comfortable with, so the learning curve won’t be as drastic. Explain to your supervisor that you will regularly evaluate and measure what you are doing online.

Join me and dozens of other social media experts on May 14th for a day devoted to social media!

In my session, 10 Steps to a Successful Social Media Strategy for Nonprofits, nonprofit professionals will learn how to implement a successful social media strategy in 10 steps.

Topics to be covered:

  • How are nonprofits using social media to raise money and awareness (best practices)?
  • What are some tips to engage supporters on social networks?
  • How can a nonprofit integrate all communication channels – online and offline – for maximum success?

Nonprofits will gain an understanding of just how much time is required to implement a social media strategy, which channels are right for their organization and how many resources (money, staff time) are necessary for success.