NFP Social Media Forum Embraces ‘Digital Influencers’
16 November 2012 at 3:46 pm
Richenda Vermuelen speaks at the NFP Social Media forum in Melbourne. Photo: Damien Currie.
Not for Profits should embrace ‘digital influencers’ such as bloggers and vloggers (video bloggers) to communicate their message to wider audiences, a Not for Profit (NFP) social media forum has been told.
The Connecting Up Not for Profit Social Media Forum brought together leaders in NFP social media to present strategies to engage audience and donors in the digital age.
“Connecting Up is focusing on how to engage Not for Profits in social media by providing support, training, insights and inspiration via our social media forums,” Connecting Up CEO Anne Gawen said.
Richenda Vermeulen, Director of digital media agency ntegrity and formerly with World Vision Australia told the forum that digital influencers are “stewards of their community” and that their passion for a particular project means that the social media community listens to them.
“They are social media experts,” Vermeulen said.
Vermeulen told Not for Profits to do their research when considering engaging digital influencers with their campaigns and try to find ways to contact them in real life.
Using vloggers who have large followings on YouTube to publish vlogs can dispel myths about an organisation and vloggers can mobilize their social networks to allow for content to go viral.
Vermeulen said that the benefit of digital influencers is that they bring their own personality to media campaigns, which is the centre of good social media.
“‘Content creators’ are able to communicate in a way that makes sense to others,” Vermeulen said.
“If you know you’re struggling with content, ask them to help you.
“Video has become a more natural way of communicating for World Vision.”
The keynote speaker, Gavin Heaton, Principal of digital strategy consultancy The Social Way, told the forum that interacting with their audience through their social media accounts was more important than ‘broadcasting’.
That is, the number of Facebook Likes you have is not as important as how many are interacting with your page and becoming involved with the messages you are publishing.
According to Heaton, Not for Profits should use content to drive different types of engagement.
“You don’t have to be well-known to go viral. you just need good content.
“Create a layered experience that people can engage in however they like.”
Also presenting was the General Manager of the Oaktree Foundation, (the organisation behind the Live Below The Line campaign), Daniel Lewis-Toakley, who said to use a mix of online and offline communication to engage audiences.
“Move offline so your online community is stronger,” he said.
Lewis-Toakley also said it was important to make the campaign a part of the participants identity.
“It’s a two-way relationship. Listen to people so that they feel over time that [your campaign] is a part of who they are,” he said.
“At the end of the day we want more than continued engagement. We want commitment.”