Tech: Is The iPad Losing Its Sheen In The Tablet Market?

Collection of Tablets and LaptopsAs the first economic quarter winds up for 2011, we will be barraged with numbers about economic growth, unemployment figures, the rising price of gasoline… Many of those numbers will be too low, or too high, for most of our liking. But in today’s tech posting, we wanted to catch up with the numbers in the growing tablet market. The 500-pound gorilla in the room is Apple’s iPad 2 (or are you holding out for iPad 3?). CNNMoney’s website reports that the iPad made up a whopping 74% of the tablet market this past quarter.

Such a number is stunning by any standard – including the standard set by Apple in the last quarter of 2010, when the iPad made up 95% percent of the market. Yep, Apple has lost 20% of the market. Will this trend continue?


| Category Apple, Design, iDevice, iPad/Tablet, Measurement, Technology | | Comments Off on Tech: Is The iPad Losing Its Sheen In The Tablet Market?

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Enviro: Towsontown Spring Festival Rocks This Weekend

We continue our periodic series on upcoming festivals by directing you to the forty-fourth annual Towsontown Spring Festival, which runs this Saturday and Sunday (April 30-May 1) on the Towsontown Square north of Baltimore city. The festival began as an arts festival, but has branched into opportunities for local businesses, community associations, and charities to reach some 250,000 people who pass through the festival over the weekend.

We had the wonderful opportunity to speak with Nancy Hafford, who as been the organizer of the festival for a number of years, and we asked her about the ways the festival staff have sought to grow the attendance and participation. She stressed the many ways people can get involved not only in the festival, but with events and philanthropic projects throughout the year. Not surprisingly, social media has played an important role in spreading the word. Nevertheless, they faced some unexpected challenges.


| Category Audio Interview, Campaigns, Communications, Community, Donor Acquisition, Event, Events, Fundraising, Interview, Nonprofit, Twitter, Web and Print | | Comments Off on Enviro: Towsontown Spring Festival Rocks This Weekend

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Social Networking: How to Create Your Group’s Facebook Page… and Promote it


Facebook Follow Us Icon

Using Facebook is somewhere between easy-peasy and dauntingly complex. As we reported previously, the only really unalterable decision is the first one: do you set up a personal account or a Page for a group, business, band, or nonprofit? Though even that decision can now be adjusted, the adjustment goes only one time and one way. Better to consider in advance who ‘you’ are and what you want to represent.


Once you have decided to get your nonprofit organization or cause online via its Page, you want then to consider some of the best practices for getting people to the page. Alison Zarella (née Driscoll) presents four great examples of how best to bring people to your organization’s page, and get them engaged.


| Category Advice, Communications, Community, Dashboards, Design, Facebook, Marketing, Marketing Skills, Permission Marketing, Resource, Social Media, Web and Print | | Comments Off on Social Networking: How to Create Your Group’s Facebook Page… and Promote it

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Aging: Study Reveals Being Homebound is Linked to Alzheimer’s

PET scan of a human brain with Alzheimer's disease

Image via Wikipedia

Steve Gurney (ProAging Information Network) reports on a new study that looks at the incidence of Alzheimer’s in “housebound” seniors. The study suggests that being housebound nearly doubles the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

The new study, published online April 15 in the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, looks at something known as “life space.”

“[Life space] is actually a measure that has come into vogue with gerontologists lately,” said lead investigator Bryan D. James, a postdoctoral fellow at Rush Alzheimer’s Disease Center in Chicago. “Mostly it’s been a measurement of mobility, figuring out whether people are getting around their environment, how much they’re seeing that’s different from their couch or bedroom or living room.”

“The research doesn’t prove that being confined to the house causes dementia, and other factors could explain the association. Still, the findings raise questions about the possible cost of isolation,” said James.

Read the full article here.

| Category Adult Kids, Aging, Assisted Living, Grandparents, Health, Healthcare, Independent Living, Nursing Home, Report, Resource, Retirement Living, Seniors Life, Study, Wellness | | Comments Off on Aging: Study Reveals Being Homebound is Linked to Alzheimer’s

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Development: Nonprofits Hope To Hire (A Few) in 2011

Synoptic Bar Graph of Survey of Nonprofits on Hiring in 2011Happy Easter Monday/Last day of Passover! We mark the season of rebirth and hope in new beginnings with a study suggesting the (tempered) optimism of the nonprofit sector to see some green sprouts of growth over the next six-to-eight months.

The overall unemployment rate has gently and oh-so-slowly slipped back toward a mere 8.8%, and politicians on both sides of the aisle are looking for ways to spin the trend to their advantage as the presidential campaign for 2012 gets going in earnest.

As hiring in the private has somewhat expanded in this late spring, nonprofits are also hoping to bring in new employees in the next few quarters of 2011. A survey from Nonprofit HR Solutions shows an awkward confidence that the hemorrhaging of positions and people is over, yet the resources and demand to hire are not really there either.

How has this uncomfortable balance been expressed by the nation’s nonprofits, according to the report?


| Category Fundraising, Marketing, National/International, Nonprofit, Report, Resource | | Comments Off on Development: Nonprofits Hope To Hire (A Few) in 2011

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Tech: Cloud Computing Can Contain Legal Catches

Though the US lags behind most of our post-industrial counterparts in high-speed network services, more services and content are moving online with each passing month. Many of us are getting our entertainment from ‘the cloud,’ and a growing number are putting our information back up into that cloud.

For nonprofits, so-called ‘cloud computing’ holds a number of benefits: the costs of such online/server-based systems are much lower than buying your own system (Apple’s Mac Mini Server being the exception, as Scott Caldarelli explained a couple of weeks ago), your information in the cloud saves space and energy in the office, and your staff can gain access to information from any wired or wireless connection.

Nevertheless, for larger organizations looking to move their data online, some legal concerns must be taken into account. Stacey Collett of has provided a great primer for some of those concerns.


| Category Advice, Nonprofit, Report, Resource, Site Administration, Technology, Web and Print | | Comments Off on Tech: Cloud Computing Can Contain Legal Catches

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Finance: Tales of New York & Baltimore Budget Shortfalls

New York CityMuch news has been published concerning the debate over the federal budget for the rest of FY2011 (through October), but the city budgets are the ones that have the most impact for most citizens. While Congresspeople pretend to debate over whether or not Death Panels are in the health-care reform act, urban dwellers want to know if trash will be picked up or if the local public school will have teachers come September.

Baltimore and New York cities are two close to our hearts at MKCREATIVE, and both are working to cover budget shortfalls without gutting services needed to keep them running smoothly. The scales of problems between these cities are different, as are the politics that surround them. How are they faring?


| Category Banking & Finance, Civics, Community, Local/Maryland, News and Current Affairs, Nonprofit, Politics | | Comments Off on Finance: Tales of New York & Baltimore Budget Shortfalls

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Communications: A Beginners Guide to the Social Networking Services


Image by Getty Images via @daylife

Leading Age (formerly the American Association for Homes & Services for the Aging) has published a useful guide on their website: it’s a quick look at what social networking is, why you should use it to connect to others and share resources, what the various services do for organizations/individuals, and why one would prefer one service over another. It’s a quick read and will help young and old alike know the difference between a “Tweet” and a “Twit.”


| Category Adult Kids, Advertising, Aging, Assisted Living, Branding, Communications, Direct Mail, Facebook, Geo-Location, Grandparents, Independent Living, Marketing, Nonprofit, Nursing Home, Permission Marketing, Public Relations, Research, Resource, Retirement Living, Seniors Life, Social Media, Twitter | | Comments Off on Communications: A Beginners Guide to the Social Networking Services

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Enviro: Deepwater Horizon Disaster One Year Later

Alabama beachfront mired in oilThe explosion of BP’s Deepwater Horizon rig in the Gulf of Mexico erupted one year ago today. Eleven workers on the Transocean/Halliburton/British Petroleum were killed, though BP has still managed to avoid investigation into their deaths. The terrible tragedy of 20 April 2010 became the ongoing ecological crisis of the largest oil spill in US waters ever. And the cat-and-mouse game BP and the US government played over the amount of old spewing from the damaged wellhead became the political story of the rest of the summer.

One year later, residents of the Gulf are still trying to recover the economic blow of a lost season of tourism and damage to beaches or wetlands. They also continue to struggle to get the promised compensation from BP. What is the state of the Gulf itself one year on?


| Category Blogs, Environment, Events, National/International, News and Current Affairs, Politics, Resource, Sustainability, Video Interview | | Comments Off on Enviro: Deepwater Horizon Disaster One Year Later

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Aging: Baby Boomers – A New Way to Grow Old

Merrill Lynch & Co.

Image via Wikipedia

Baby boomers won’t grow old the old-fashioned way, experts say.

It looks like the baby boomers, who used to urge each other to “do your own thing,” will do precisely that when it comes to retirement, write Tom Valeo and Sylvia Davis at

Some will imitate their parents and drop out of the work force as early as possible to begin a life of leisure, continuing a trend that began more than a century ago.

More than 80% of boomers, however, plan to work beyond the age of 65, according to the Merrill Lynch New Retirement Survey. Most will do so to supplement their Social Security checks, since at least one-quarter of boomer households have failed to save enough for retirement, according to the Congressional Budget Office. “They appear likely to depend entirely on government benefits in retirement,” the CBO report states.


| Category Adult Kids, Aging, Assisted Living, Grandparents, Independent Living, Nursing Home, Report, Resource, Retirement Living, Seniors Life, Study | | Comments Off on Aging: Baby Boomers – A New Way to Grow Old

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Fundraising: Two New Online Platforms Target Nonprofits

Photo of Craig Newmark.

Image via Wikipedia

Suddenly everyone wants to build a social media platform just for nonprofits. In addition to Jumo and Crowdrise, which act as fundraising portals, and Facebook’s nonprofit program, March saw two new entries. Craig Newmark (the Craig in Craigslist) launched Craigconnects as a way to support worthy organizations from the grassroots. Meanwhile, Google for Nonprofits offers nonprofits a one-stop shop for accessing a suite of Google applications, including up to $10,000 a month worth of Google Adwords.

Guest blogger Don Akchin writes frequently about marketing and philanthropy at

| Category Crowdfunding, Development, Donor Acquisition, Fundraising | | Comments Off on Fundraising: Two New Online Platforms Target Nonprofits

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#Communications: Postal Rates Up? No Worries: Direct Mail Still Makes Sense.

USA 10-cent postage stamp, 1973: "It all ...

Image via Wikipedia

We’re firm believers that direct mail is not dead, its merely entering the final stages of a metamorphosis into the perfect solution to support:

So when our friends at Ecoprint reminded us that postal rates will change on April 17 AND we needed to update our The Intelligent Mail (IMb) barcodes for new designs of reply envelopes, we took notice.


| Category Advertising, Communications, Direct Mail, Marketing, Marketing Budget, Measurement, printing, Resource | | Comments Off on #Communications: Postal Rates Up? No Worries: Direct Mail Still Makes Sense.

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Tech: Great Guidance To Develop Social Media Strategy

Infographic on how Social Media are being used...

Image via Wikipedia

The influences of social media on our language, our reading and writing habits, and our communications expectations have been phenomenal. Our blog has tried to help our readers traverse the SM landscape. And today we turn to a peer, Chad Norman, Internet marketing manager for Blackbaud, who has a wonderful presentation and how-to concerning setting up a SM ‘Listening Post.’ But more importantly still, he explains why a Listening Post can help tailor your tactics of SM-outreach to help achieve your organization’s larger strategic goals. The key term for Chad is ‘Listening.’

While listening is critical at an event like the 2011 Nonprofit Technology Conference, it’s also a key function back in the offices of our nonprofits. Listening to our supporters can help in so many ways, and social media has made it extremely easy to so. But how?


| Category Advice, Blogs, Branding, Campaigns, Communications, Dashboards, Marketing Skills, Measurement, Nonprofit, Research, Seminar | | Comments Off on Tech: Great Guidance To Develop Social Media Strategy

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Aging: The Business & Strategy of Seniors Housing & Care (Classes)

The Erickson School, at University of Maryland, Baltimore County, is hosting an entrepreneurial seniors housing and care executive education course at the UMBC Technology Center, May 17-20.

Led by Mark Erickson, and featuring a diverse lineup of instructors, Business and Strategy provides 3 1/2 days of intensive education on strategy, positioning and trends, and the unique nature of the seniors housing and care sector.


| Category Adult Kids, Aging, Assisted Living, Community, Conference/Congress, Education: General, Grandparents, Independent Living, Nonprofit, Nursing Home, Resource, Retirement Living, Seminar, Seniors Life | | Comments Off on Aging: The Business & Strategy of Seniors Housing & Care (Classes)

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#Interview: Erin Barnes & Brandon Whitney of

Cassie, Brandon, and Erin of

Cassie, Brandon, & Erin

One New York non-profit is making great strides in addressing the adage — a real connection to others starts ‘in our back yards.’ The organization, ioby (in our back yards), began with the need to answer the question, ‘What is the fastest & easiest way for someone to get involved with something meaningful?’

Founding members Erin Barnes and Brandon Whitney, as well as Cassie Flynn, were all Yale graduates (2007) who had individually completed field work in Africa and South America. Back in the states they each came to New York for different career and personal paths. While pursuing their young careers and keeping in touch, they saw people who really wanted to do something good for the environment but whose options seemed limited. The three began to discuss the possibility of launching their own grassroots organization to help neighbors reach out to neighbors. For the triumvirate, career changes were in the works, as Erin and Brandon worked on ioby with Cassie, who remained on the Climate Change Team at the UN, where she has provided strategic advisory services to UN bodies, governments, and civil society groups on climate policy issues.


| Category Grants and Funding, Greening, Interview, Nonprofit | | Comments Off on #Interview: Erin Barnes & Brandon Whitney of

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Enviro: 8th-Annual Baltimore Green Week Starts Tomorrow!


2011 BGW Poster by Emilio Martinez

Download Emilio Martinez's poster here

It started with a handful of volunteers hoping to draw attention to some of the environmental efforts in and around Baltimore city. It grew in scope to include the business and nonprofit sectors, as well as scores of neighborhood-based organizations. And now Baltimore Green Works is poised to give us the biggest, funnest, most colorful, and most informative Green Week ever. It kicks of tomorrow with “Plant A Vertical Garden” at 2:pm at the Kennedy-Krieger Institute’s Greenspring campus: “Join Baltimore Contained as we plant organic vegetables started from seed by the horticulture students at Kennedy Krieger High School. Using Woolly Pockets planters, you can grow vegetables on any supporting structure, including a chain link fence!” Read on to see the other green goodness coming our way.


| Category Community, Environment, Event, Events, Greening, Urban Farming | | Comments Off on Enviro: 8th-Annual Baltimore Green Week Starts Tomorrow!

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#Tech: Software & Online Resources for Nonprofit Organizations

NPower LogoWe have come up with a few more materials we wanted to share with you and your colleagues to help your organization make the most of its technology dollars. Money remains tight throughout the non-banking economy, so not-for-profits must continue to make efficient use of their funding and of the software and online gateways they use to bring people to their missions.

The Foundation Center just published a compendium of sites meant expressly to help nonprofits through their services or to offer resources and reviews that nonprofits certainly could benefit from. We want to highlight two of the organizations designed for the nonprofit sector.


| Category Advice, Communications, Fundraising, Marketing, Publications, Resource, Reviews, Social Media, Software Review, Technology, Web and Print | | Comments Off on #Tech: Software & Online Resources for Nonprofit Organizations

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#Tech: The Apple Mac Mini Server – Part 2

Scott Caldarelli of Scott Caldarelli ConsultingScott Caldarelli returns to continue his discussion of the advantages of the inexpensive Mac Mini Server for your office.

In Part One of my review, I talked about the Mac mini server and how it can provide useful services for your organization. I talked about the built in services that are included from Apple. While they are not bad, there are alternatives to use on the mini server to gain more powerful features.


| Category Apple, Database, Hardware Review, iDevice, Nonprofit, Revitalization, Site Administration, Software Review, Technology, Technology for Nonprofits | | 1 Comments

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Aging: Video On Design & Marketing To Baby Boomers

A number of weeks ago we presented a news story about how retiring Baby Boomers are changing the ways we all perceive design and consumerism in older age. Since then NBC news filled out the report with a posted video that includes Today’s Peter Alexander conversation with Joseph Coughlin, director of MIT’s Age Lab. We also get to see him don “AGNES,” a suit designed to impose the physical aspects of aging on a younger person. That suit has been used by commercial designers and engineers to help create products and access to products meant to improve the lives of older Americans. But don’t call them ‘Old.’



| Category Advertising, Assisted Living, Design, Health, Independent Living, Marketing, Research, Retirement Living, Technology, Video Interview, Wellness | | Comments Off on Aging: Video On Design & Marketing To Baby Boomers

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Social Media: What’s Normal for Nonprofits Online? Check the eNonprofit Benchmarks Study

NTEN and M+R Strategic Services released their 2011 eNonprofit Benchmarks Study in March, and there’s good news and bad news all through it.

  • The median email list grew 20%; but the annual email list churn is 18% (8% unsubscribes).
  • Online fundraising grew 14% in one year. But international disaster aid drove that, with 163% growth.
  • Open rates on fundraising email fell 19%, to 0.08%; open rates for advocacy fell 7%, to 3.3%. (Hint: try fund appeals to advocacy respondents)
  • 90% of online donations are one-time gifts.
  • The average organization sent 3.6 emails per subscriber per month (6 in December).
  • For every 1,000 email list names, there are an average 110 Facebook fan page users and 19 Twitter followers.

Guest blogger Don Akchin writes frequently about marketing and philanthropy at

| Category Advice, Cross-Post, Fundraising, Grants and Funding, Nonprofit, Resource, Study | | Comments Off on Social Media: What’s Normal for Nonprofits Online? Check the eNonprofit Benchmarks Study

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Social Media: Museums Extend Their Walls To Patrons’ Computers

Guggeneheim & YouTube Video BiennialMuseums represent all that is classical, time-honored, and stable in a world of worthy f flux and fad. These institutions are made up of the spaces, curators, and scholars who house, protect, and advocate for what is worthy of inclusion in the collection.

Yet some museums are keeping that ethos while also engaging in the latest social media to bring audiences into the processes: giving them behind-the-scenes looks at restoration or early-bird opportunities to view new acquisitions, or even having a say of what gets shown.

Last month The New York Times had a story about how two museums in the city, one in Indianapolis, and one in San Francisco are finding creative ways to bring people to the museums’ activities and collections, even if those people do not go to the museums themselves. What seems to work to engage people in these virtual collections?


| Category Geo-Location, Marketing, Newspaper Article, Nonprofit, Public Relations, Social Media, Web and Print | | Comments Off on Social Media: Museums Extend Their Walls To Patrons’ Computers

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Event: Youth Media Festival Performance Day, April 30th

Event Poster










Wide Angle Youth Media is a Maryland non-profit that provides Baltimore youth with opportunities to tell their own stories using video technology, public speaking, and critical thinking skills. Through after school programs, community events, their annual Who Are You? Youth Media Festival, and a youth-run television show, Wide Angle strives to make media make a difference.

Join Wide Angle in celebrating the accomplishments and creativity of over 300 Baltimore youth. See youth produced videos, experience performances by young people, hear original music and see the Youth Dreamers Fashion Show!

Festival Performance Day
Saturday, April 30th, 2011 at Centerstage
700 Calvert Street, Baltimore, MD 21202

Tickets: Suggested donation of $10. Reservations are required.

Call Centerstage for tickets at 410-332-0033.

| Category Community, Event, Events, Fundraising | | Comments Off on Event: Youth Media Festival Performance Day, April 30th

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Philanthropy: Different Pitches For Different Needs

Stanford Social Innovation Review LogoFor many of us (baseball fans), spring officially arrived this weekend. Whichever team you support, may their ball season be as productive and rewarding as your fundraising year.

And as you revitalize your new-year’s resolutions and strategies for fundraising, consider an interesting article we came across over the weekend. Written by Sean Stannard-Stockton, CEO of Tactical Philanthropy Advisors and the author of the Tactical Philanthropy blog, it presents three kinds of giving and three ways to raise money for each of those kinds of giving. This particular article he posted on The Stanford Social Innovation Review.


| Category Blogs, Development, Donor Acquisition, Fundraising, Grants, Grants and Funding, Major Gifts, Marketing Budget, Nonprofit | | Comments Off on Philanthropy: Different Pitches For Different Needs

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Tech: Facebook Now Allows Conversion To Business & Fan Pages

Facebook's Types Of PagesWhen we discussed some of the basics of setting up a Facebook page, we pointed out the mission-critical decision of whether to have a personal page or a business page. Once that decision was made, the features were set and the only way to get the other type of page was to create a separate page.

In the last few weeks, though, Facebook’s programmers have developed a way to move a personal page to a business page. The conversion is one-time and one-way (only personal to business or fan page). But your slew of ‘Friends’ will follow you as ‘Fans’ of you-as-business. Nevertheless, the transition forces some tough decisions about what you hope to accomplish on Facebook.


| Category Facebook, Marketing, Public Relations, Social Media | | Comments Off on Tech: Facebook Now Allows Conversion To Business & Fan Pages

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