Category Archives: Social Media

Expectations: The Driver of Social Media Success

post by Willie Matis.

So. I have the opportunity to both write a blog for today ANDpresent at today’s AFP Brown Bag Luncheon.  So, if you are reading this before 11:30am today (9/5), then head on over to the WFYI Building at noon for a great discussion about “Brand A-where-ness + Social Media”.  If you are reading this post AFTER 1pm, or even tomorrow, or the next day, then I hope you went to the Brown Bag or asked someone how the Brown Bag went.

With social media, expectations drive success.  Just like anything, if you do what is expected of you, then good things happen.  If you do not live up to expectations, then one of two things have gone wrong.

1) Expectations were off the mark or misunderstood.
2) You let someone down.

There are so many different platforms throughout the social network, and expectations are different on each platform, and expectations are different according to each person/organization.

Yesterday, Sara Croft sent out a FANTASTIC infographic that was posted on  Check it out and see what is expected when it comes to posting on Facebook & Twitter.

I also promised at my presentation that I housed a few social media tools that I rely on in this post, and here you go:

If you attended yesterday’s Brown Bag, then you probably remember Nate Pass’s comment toward the end.  He is an engineer with WFYI, but he is just starting a new nonprofit.  Not only can we as fundraisers help him, he can also help us.  His nonprofit is – Media Career Advancement Program – and he has students that would be willing to help with video for your organization.  If you’d like to get in touch with him, you can email him at or check out the website

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Creating an online community where followers help each other

After an off week, last week, because of the awkward placement of Independence Day.  No one wasn’t going to NOT celebrate the 4th of July at some point last week.

But now we are back in action, bringing you thought provoking ideas on best practices, the latest news on our chapters events and still attempting to get livestreamed events up and running for those who can’t always make it out of the office for our Brown Bags or Education Luncheons.

With that being said, we want to make sure that the AFP online community is bringing you what you need.

A sort of spin on this month’s Brown Bag – “What Do CEO’s Want and Need from Development Folks?” – we want to ask YOU….

What do Development Folks Want and Need from the AFP-Indiana Social Media outlets?

A quick recap of what we have to offer:

– This blog! Subscribe here.
Facebook page.
Our LinkedIn Group (Members Only).
Livestreamed Events.

The mission of AFP chapters everywhere is to encourage and foster growth of development and philanthropy.  All of our social media outlets are tools to be used by all fundraisers – members, non-members, Indiana based and beyond.

1) What would you like to see from our social media outlets in the future?
2) What do you think can be done to help encourage other members to use our social media communication?
3) What other suggestions do you have for AFP?

Comment below.  Start a conversation on FacebookTweet at us. Or start a new discussion in the LinkedIn Group!

We are looking forward to hearing from you.

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NFC. QR Codes. Fundraisers! Stay Ahead of the Curve.

written by Willie Matis

So, I almost hesitated in posting about this, but after seeing that the Event Manager Blog wrote about NFC back in April of 2011 I felt that we as fundraisers need to have this conversation.



SERIOUSLY?? What is with all of these acronyms?  Honestly, you don’t NEED to know what they stand for, you just need to know what they ARE and what they DO.

What are QR codes and what do they do?

Hopefully by now, most of us know what QR codes are.  Here is one below…

You can scan this thing with your mobile phone (go ahead see where it takes you).  After you scan it, you are taken to a mobile site.  A lot of fundraisers are using this to lead potential donors to a mobile giving site, especially during events.  QR codes are great.  You can customize them with your logo, any colors, and any shapes that you would like.  If you want to stay on top of QR codes and how you can put them to EXCELLENT use, pay attention to Joe Waters’ blogs & tweets (he is in the process of writing QR Codes for Dummies). QR codes give you a chance to direct a donor to the exact site you want to send them to.

But there is a new player in town..

What is NFC and what does it do?

Have you used the “Bump-It” app on your smartphone yet? If no – it’s an app where you can easily transfer contact information, movies, or apps simply by giving each other a fist bump with your phone in your hand.  If yes – you are a little ahead of the curve when it comes to NFC.

(By the way, NFC is not talking about the conference in the NFL.)

After reading more about NFC’s capabilities, I am becoming a bigger and bigger fan of it when comparing it to QR codes.  Reason 1 – because of the ease for people to connect with you on social media through NFC.  Reason 2 – my QR scanner on my phone always screws up and has led me to end a lot of my tweets with #droidproblems.

Okay, Willie tell us more about NFC. NFC stands for “Near Field Communication”.  The best example other than the Bump-It app that I can think of is the Mastercard QUICK PAY

How can fundraisers use NFC to their advantage?

I can see it being used best at fundraising events.  If you read this blog that was just written at the Event Manager Blog, then you can read about a case study done where event-goers were able to tell their friends on Facebook which appetizers they liked best, simply by swiping their bracelet next to the label of the particular dish.

Another great way to use NFC is giving guests a chance to quickly upload pictures from photo booths at an event.  For both of these examples, all that event-goers had to do was load their social media log-ins into their bracelet.  Trust me, these NFC companies have experts to take care of the backend stuff – you don’t need to worry too much about the tech stuff.

NFC and QR Codes and Mobile… oh my!

NFC and QR codes will be ever changing.  Especially in the beginning because they will be competing for the top spot.  I think each will have its advantages and it’s disadvantages.  For the right now, QR codes are your most cost effective approach because you can create them for free using

But I would suggest learning more about both (here is a recommended NFC company).  Mobile is no longer the future, mobile is now.  As fundraisers we need to stay ahead of the curve.

Have you used QR codes or NFC in a campaign or event and seen success?
What is your biggest obstacle with mobile?
Stay ahead of the curve, join the conversation!


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3 Takeaways from AFP’s International Conference & How to Implement Them

written by Willie Matis

It is hard to believe that this is the last full week of April already.  Time has been flying this year, and one of the main reasons why that might be is because of my opportunity to visit Vancouver for the AFP International Conference.  It was such an awesome experience that I owe to the AFP Indiana Chapter and all of the Chapter supporters because the reason I was able to go was because of the Chamberlin Scholarship.  I am very grateful for receiving the scholarship, and if I did not receive the award, then I would not have been able to have the experience.

I have been to a few conferences like the Half-Day conference for AFP-Indiana last year as well as the Policy & Issues Forum for the National Association of Community Health Centers.  At each conference, you feel energized because everyone is there for one reason – to get better at their profession.  It is a fantastic feeling to get around a group of people who are all from different backgrounds, have experienced different lives, yet are passionate about getting better a FUNDRAISING!  It is IMPOSSIBLE not to takeaway something from attending a conference of this sort (well, I guess it’s possible, if you go but don’t attend any sessions or meetings).

ANYWAY! Vancouver was a fantastic city, the conference was a very informative one, and the people there were amazing.  Here are the three things that I took away from attending the conference, and hopefully I can shed some light on how I have stayed on track in implementing them.

1) Put my organization on Google +.

Okay, I would be wrong if I didn’t mention any social media tips & tricks I picked up at the conference.  It is a passion of mine, and it is also the program I oversee at HealthNet.  Most everyone sees the need to be on Facebook, Twitter, and have an email newsletter.  The audience is there and ready to engage as long as you bring creative ways to do so.  But, this Google+ thingy?? Really Willie? Yes.  I attended Marc Pitman‘s session – Beyond the Basics – about social media, and he gave great pointers on why nonprofits need to be on Google+.

By being on Google+ and posting content about your organization, you are now training Google on which keywords people will be using to find your organization through search.  (A little tidbit from me – don’t worry about engagement) Google+ will not bring an influx of donations or volunteers, but it will up your SEO and allow consumers/donors be able to find you in the top 5 results on a Google Search.

2) Create good content and ASK.

My favorite general session at AFP-International was from Scott Harrison, founder of charity:water.  He has a very interesting life story already, and he MIGHT be 40.  I’ll spare you the biography though.  If you do a quick search on charity:water, then you will see how well they are doing.  Growing their donations each year at a tremendous pace.

How do they do it?  They create good content and ASK.  My takeaway from this session – get good at video, don’t be afraid to take some risks, and then ask corporations/news media/for profits/other nonprofits/etc to share your stories.  With the new age of social media and content sharing (hello, you are reading a blog for AFP-Indiana right?), if you create good content and put it in front of people’s faces repeatedly, then something good will happen.

3) Keep in touch.

This one is short and sweet.  Going to any conference, you meet A LOT of great people.  Business cards are being exchanged like to 12 year olds on the back porch trying to work their way up to a Peyton Manning Rookie Card.  MAKE SURE TO KEEP IN TOUCH!  The best way to continue learning and continue to get motivation throughout the year is by staying in touch with the connections you have made.  They are going through the same things you are but may have a different idea that can get you over the obstacle you are facing.

I learned A TON during the time in Vancouver.  And, I took what I thought was a really awesome picture…

But this was all due to the fact that I received the Chamberlin Scholarship!  AFP has a ton of wonderful opportunities that can be made possible through scholarships.  Scroll through a few here and be on the lookout for any opportunities to use them.  (ONE IS DUE MAY 1st – JUMP ON IT!)


Filed under Chapter Events, Fundraising in General, Social Media

AFP Brown Bag Reaction – Social Media Fundraising

post by Willie Matis

Yesterday’s AFP Brown Bag Series featured Nathan Hand, VP of Development at Indianapolis based School on Wheels.  The workshop titled – Social Media Fundraising – really was a workshop!  Nathan didn’t just stand in front of the crowd and talk about how social media can be used to fundraise for your organization, he made every attendee think about how to formulate their own social media fundraising campaign.

AFP Brown Bag Workshop

He really did. A whole 15 minutes was spent on working on your individual campaign.


A great workshop done by a local member who has had A TON of experience in Social Media Fundraising left the crowd with 5 action steps  when starting a campaign online:

  1. Based On Asset or Need? Combination?
    Are you trying to create a social media fundraiser based on your following or because you have an organizational need?  Maybe both are present, but knowing what you want to get out of it is first and foremost.

  2. Use who to get what and why?  Who – People. What – Tools. Why – Hook/reward.
    Are you going to contact the 5 people with the most Klout out of all of your followers?  Are you going to ask your board members who are influential on Social media already?  And then what are you going to give them as tools – just a link? a picture? a story?  Lastly, why are you having them do this? Is is just helping out your organization? Or is their a prize for the person who sends the most tweets/posts/retweets)

  3. Language/message (Exact Tweet; Exact DM; Exact FB post; Exact email; etc.)
    VERY VERY IMPORTANT. Send them exactly what you want them to say.  Otherwise, you will end up with 32 different messages and instead of engaging a lot of people, you will now just confuse a lot of people.

  4. Targets/Asks – 50 DMS – tweet v DM 5 friends; 50 FB messages (post v comment v like; 50 personal emails (bd, committees, top donors)
    Another building block on top of point number 2.  Make sure you target people who will then influence the audience your organization needs to influence.  Make your ask specific (weird how much a social media campaign sounds like a good ol’ fashioned fundraising campaign, right?)

  5. Follow-up – celebrate either way NO MATTER WHAT
    Even if you lose, come up short or your website crashes and have to rebuild a new one.  CELEBRATE! It sounds crazy, but do it.  You may not have been successful at a fundraising level, but you upped engagement, touched an untapped audience and furthered that bond between some of your followers and your organization.

Nathan explaining the effect of the social network.

An excellent AFP Brown Bag to hold on the same exact day as the launch of AFP-Indiana’s blog!

If you want to learn more from Nathan (follow his blog) or if you would like to see what School on Wheels has done (go to their site).  You can subscribe to this blog by clicking here to put it in your reader of choice or by putting your email address in the box in the sidebar on your right!  Hope to see you all at the next AFP Brown Bag – “FREE FOR ALL” – on April 4th at Keep Indianapolis Beautiful.

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