Thursday, February 19, 2009

Takeaways for Staff

The main takeaway is that there are ways to manage this effort that make sense, but yet don't need to be superformal.

Instead of having one overall objective, create specific objectives and measure how you meet them individually.

Note those who attended. (Some well known guests JD Lasica, DigiDave).

There are Five Basic Steps (tactics) that build on each other:
  • Listen
  • Participate
  • Tell Your Story
  • Generate Buzz
  • Build Community
You keep adding steps until you are doing all of these things simultaneously, but it's important to start at the beginning (listening).

The listening step is another tool for competitive intelligence in general.

We played a great game designed to help craft a social media strategy that had us consider:
  • objective
  • audience
  • strategy
  • tools
There are excellent worksheets available on the wiki for building our own strategy and for duplicating this game so we can play it here with staff and apply it directly to the Resource Center (go to the Materials page and scroll down to Social Media Strategy Simulation Game).

Social Media ROI
People tend to be skeptical about the value of social media. Show value by capturing data as you go along. Although you want to be strategic, don't overplan - you have to engage in order to learn. Great slideshow on this: Listen Learn Adapt.

Segue into discussion of capacity. The more successful we are at this, the more time it will take, but we can still work smart and efficiently.

Two things that got reinforced to me as a direct result of things I learned at the workshop. These are areas where I wish we would have educated CNCS and stood strong on our position:
  1. keeping our name - brand recognition - it would be easier to listen now if our name was still nsrc
  2. their institutional implementation of twitter is being criticized and they don't know it because they aren't listening. There is still room and time to educate them on this. UPDATE: Jason is handling this - he is doing a great job of teaching CNCS to chart these new waters!
I'm glad I was reminded to use Twitter search as a listening tool because I found this nice example of a fellow Twitterer promoting us (more specifically promoting our YouTube channel) to others.

Saturday, February 14, 2009


Since some of my notes in this blog over the past few days are knowledge that is already captured in the wiki, I'm going to go back over my notes and clean them up and fine tune them so that they are specifically pertinent to our agency's needs.

First, a brain dump for Beth, Holly, and John - ideas for the next iteration of the workshop:

1) The game we played at the end of day one was awesome. I don't know if this is possible but I'm wondering if there is a way to start the exercise earlier, and then give people some time to segue from the exercise into crafting their own social media strategy (essentially giving folks workshop time to do that night's "homework"). Having the cards in front of you is helpful: visually thinking through the interplay of audience, strategy, tools.

Alternately, another possible approach might be to save the exercise for near the end of the workshop, after participants have had a chance to really learn exactly what each tool is best for. I remember our team chose Digg although we all had an intuition it wasn't really the best tool - the breakout session on day two confirmed this.

2) It wasn't clear if the participation level of reporting on one's own social media strategy was low because people didn't have time to do their homework or if there was some other reason. For myself, I realized that there were a lot of pieces of the strategy I couldn't craft without more research and more consultation with staff. Perhaps encouraging people to write down what those missing pieces are, not to get blocked by that, but to think about what pieces of the strategy they *can* nail down and what pieces they can't.

What if you said that on Day Two in the morning you would be randomly pulling up blog posts to see what people came up with. Too much pressure? Could be motivating.

3) Connect participants so they can continue to share their progress after the workshop? Either more explicitly suggest that partipants continue to use their blogs and follow each others progress on the blogs after the workshop OR - show how easy it is to set up a Ning space at the very beginning and let people discuss things there? I don't know - maybe that is fragmenting - we already have the wiki and the blogs. I just kind of came away feeling I only had a way to connect with people I specifically took the time to get their business card - maybe ask people if they are willing to have their contact info shared in a list that everyone gets.