Blogging for Your Nonprofit: Nuggets from the Nonprofit 2.0 Unconference 2011
One of the sessions I enjoyed attending at the Nonprofit 2.0 Unconference was on blogging. The big challenges raised by attendees included:
- How do you motivate people within your nonprofit organization to write for your blog?
- How do you market your nonprofit’s blog so others will see it?
- How do you demonstrate ROI (return on investment) to the powers-that-be for your blog?
- How do you engage others, get comments, and see interaction on your blog?
A few of the tips offered:
- Have a few seeds in your back pocket to spark comments and discussion on your blog.
- Tell others you have a blog and build connections. Ask your friends and family to comment on your blog.
- Ask questions on your blog.
- A blog is not a thing you check off on a list – know where it fits in your communications strategy.
- Set up an editorial calendar for your blog to help you chart out potential future posts, budget your time, and integrate your blog with other communications (my suggestion).
- Re-purpose content from other projects. You may need to tweak it to make it blog-format friendly, but that can be a huge time-savings.
- Reach out to organization partners. Comment on other blogs and make friends with others blogging about similar interests.
- Do not allow the act of “writing” a blog post to overcome the time you have available for the task. Blog posts do not have to be overly long. They can be brief and just 1-2 paragraphs and be effective.
- Comments are not the only indicator of success. Look at web analytics, likes, re-tweets, page views, and other factors when evaluating blog success.
- Good posts that others suggested have drawn reader interest and comments – case studies discussing when things failed and didn’t go as planned, Q&A interviews with experts tend to be evergreen (never go out of date) and popular.
- Your blog audience should be targeted and defined. Know who you want to talk to. “Everyone” is not an audience.
- You can use your blog to update your home page by streaming the feed onto the page. This can sometimes make it easier to update the home page and give your page a fresh look (my point).
- It doesn’t matter if the blog is built using your web software or third-party software that integrates into your site. Do what works for you and is the easiest.