“I’m watching you” – Social Media Monitoring

Social media monitoring has become a huge industry, with many tracking tools popping up to help businesses keep track of their brand performance across the Web. With dozens upon dozens of available options, choosing the right fit for a company can be a daunting task.

Upon doing some research, I believe Sprout Social would be a wonderful choice for Ronald McDonald House Charities Morgantown to monitor the activity set forth by my proposed social media plan. Sprout Social offers a free trial, a $59/month plan, and a $99/month plan. Instantly, these prices show affordability, which is imperative for a small non-profit branch like RMHC Morgantown. The $59/month plan would likely be the wiser choice, offering various tools such as monitoring, content calendar, reports, and more.

I believe Sprout Social an appropriate choice for RMHC Morgantown due to the affordability combined with tools provided for the price. While there are certainly cheaper options available, Sprout Social has built a reputation for quality, which lends credibility to its usage. Moreover, given the scope of the social media plan I have created over time, an affordable (but also quality-) social media monitoring tool would be hugely beneficial for RMHC

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Looking back and reflecting on my social media plan, I am quite proud of my ideas. I’ve no doubt that if I were to look at every proposed action, I would have a burning desire to change many details, being that I am my harshest critic for improvement. That said, I would love the opportunity to present my plan to the appropriate RMHC managers, even if only for general feedback. On the other hand, the opportunity to implement my ideas and test their success is a goal that I look forward to achieving.

Sources:

http://www.myniceprofile.com/funny-48269.html

http://sproutsocial.com/

https://www.g2crowd.com/products/sprout-social/reviews

https://www.linkedin.com/topic/sprout-social

White Label Networks for RMHC: Are They Worth It?

Full-Branding

White label (aka private) social networks have been growing in popularity over the past few years. Their appeal comes from allowing a company to completely own and control everything regarding the network, ranging from appearance to content. However, this type of ownership comes at a significant price, especially when compared to the available public social networks. White label networks certainly have advantages over public social networks, but weighing the advantages against the incurred costs is paramount when considering building a company’s own private network.

When evaluating private networks in relation to non-profits, like Ronald McDonald House Charities, the situation becomes all the more favorable toward public networks. Most non-profits, RMHC included, simply cannot afford to create  these private social networks when the public networks offer equal benefits, in terms of outreach. However, using a site like Ning (link below) to build the company’s own social network may provide the benefits without the large costs.

That said, a theoretical private social network for RMHC does have strong branding possibilities. The company could make the network available for employees, families, and the general public. There would be no stringent membership requirements, although the sign-up page could encourage providing a location of which the potential member has partaken in. The network could host global company information while providing a comprehensive list (with website links) to every single RMHC branch around the world. Beside the traditional information and pictures readily available elsewhere, the network could feature a sliding display of tweets, pictures, and posts from various RMHCs, with the aforementioned posts coming from employees, families, or volunteers.

In addition, personal experience posts with RMHC would be encouraged, along with comments. Furthermore, the network would have information regarding opportunities to volunteer or donate, alongside finding the nearest RMHC to a person’s location. A mobile app could prove beneficial here, with location services being made available for the app.

In essence, expanding a company like Ronald McDonald House Charities to include white label networking has the potential for benefits. However, those benefits may not be necessarily benefits that are not gained from public social media. If RMHC were to jump on the private network bandwagon, a site like Ning could be used at a much lower cost than other private networks.

It is important to note, however, that this post is referring exclusively to Ronald McDonald House Charities of Morgantown, WV. If the global headquarters chose to implement the white label network and make the network available for all RMHCs, then the prospect of white label networks becomes far more enticing (and possible). However, RMHC branches operate independently of one another, making this idea null at the present time.

 

Source:

http://www.ning.com/blog/2007/09/what_does_it_mean_to_be_white.html

Image source:

http://www.adk2.com/

 

 

 

The Storm is Here: How to Manage Crisis Situations for Non-Profits

scandal olivia

Corporations face unexpected situations that pose significant risk to their reputation, brand, and profits more often than not. In today’s rapid paced and social media obsessed society, news of such PR nightmares will be spread globally in mere hours, even minutes. And while social media can cause numerous headaches for corporations, the same additional problem can instead function as a potential solution for a corporation’s image.

Non-profits can face the same media disasters that for-profit businesses face. In many respects, non-profits have much more to lose with a damaged brand or reputation, as non-profits rely almost solely on outside help to accomplish their mission. For this reason, non-profits are, and perhaps rightfully should be, much more controlling of their disclosure of information and monitoring what is said about the organization.

My chosen organization, Ronald McDonald House Charities, is undoubtedly at risk of such potential situations like any other business. As stated by my sources, the best way to prepare for a disaster is to actually prepare for any given situation beforehand. A few examples that could threaten RMHC’s brand include (but certainly not limited to): employees or volunteers tweeting negative commentary about the organization, families unhappy with various aspects making their displeasure public, and an in-house shake-up being made public. Non-profits are prime targets for exploitative business people, who seek to abuse their position at a non-profit for personal gain. For all these situations, I would try to have a prepared response.

RMHC, as most non-profits and corporations alike, likely try to keep any potential scandal contained and secret. However, such a smooth recovery is not always possible, especially with social media. If I were doing reparative work following a crisis, I would use almost all the social media presence available to the organization, ie. Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. The most important aspects, I believe, would be honesty and equilibrium across all channels. A hypothetical situation of a family spreading negative comments via Twitter would certainly warrant personal outreach. However, I would also prepare a tweet such as, “We are extremely sorry for your issues with your stay. We promise to take into consideration your worries and address them efficiently.”

Moreover, I would focus on the positive happenings at the moment, rather than the negative. Without ignoring or covering up whatever the crisis may be (if said crisis has already been made public), I would use social media channels to spread the organization’s mission. For example, a Facebook post detailing the success of a recent fundraising event, with pictures and quotes from volunteers, would do much to repair damage and continue upholding RMHC as a beneficiary organization in the eyes of the people.

In essence, I believe the mightiest form of defense for RMHC when using social media to combat possible negative perception would be complete honesty, consistency, and positivity. Ronald McDonald House Charities is a wonderful organization, and I believe people will look past any unwanted negativity in a crisis to continue supporting the organization.

 

Sources:

Be Prepared: 5 Steps to Managing a PR Crisis

https://insurancefornonprofits.org/resources/Booklet-Crisis.pdf

Video Streaming into the Future with Periscope

periscope

Video sharing has become a far more prevalent feature than in the early years of social media. With Snapchat, Vine, and Instagram, making and sharing videos is more popular than ever. One particular app, Periscope, was created with video streaming at the forefront. Created by Kayvon Beykpour and Joe Bernstein because Beykpour wanted to be able to see the protests in Istanbul (back in 2013) instead of merely reading about them on Twitter, Periscope has only officially been available since March 26, 2015. In a mere four months, the app had amassed ten million accounts who were watching over forty years of video a day. Last December, Periscope was also named the iPhone App of the Year. Periscope seems poised to enter the lives of many more socially conscious consumers in the coming years.

Ronald McDonald House can definitely capitalize on this up-and-coming video streaming app, sort of being “ahead of the game.” RMHC could have employees, volunteers, and guests alike use Periscope to give virtual tours of establishments, show exciting events currently happening, or even to interact with other RMHC people across the globe. Here is an example of a tour being given of the RMHC Family Room, a waiting room at Ruby Memorial Hospital.

Another example of possible Periscope usage would be the upcoming Brunch Around event. This fundraising event consists of RMHC partnering with the various wonderful, local restaurants of Morgantown, such as Table9, Iron Horse Tavern, and Terra Cafe. People attend these restaurants as always, with a small percentage of total earnings being donated to RMHC. The event is fun, beneficial, and a great way to discover some delicious food that is often forgotten amidst the many chain restaurants present in today’s society. People affiliated with RMHC can use Periscope, in conjunction with Twitter, to spread the word of the event, show off the yummy food (everyone loves seeing food), and encourage others to come participate.

Overall, the potential of Periscope is limitless. The app has the ability to truly explode in popularity, and RMHC can benefit from jumping on the video streaming craze early. The benefits of increased exposure, more visibility, and more volunteers and donors are all strong cases for why Ronald McDonald House should use Periscope.

 

Sources:

http://pagenorth.co.uk/introducing-periscope-the-next-generation-of-social-media/

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/layla-revis/social-media-trends-2016_b_8914190.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Periscope_(app)#Service (cited info only)