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#DEVELOPMENT: Do You Have Big Plans For Your Big Data? Not So Fast…

The latest buzz concept is ‘Big Data.’ Like most buzz concepts/ words, its definition leaves much up to the mouth of the speaker. Big Data, whatever the specifics, refers to the large amount of information that can be collected from online activity and exchange of information (on social networks, for example). The ability to aggregate such information from posts, streams, and online purchases creates some truly ‘big’ numbers. And they are only further extended with the collection of information from rewards programs and loyalty cards.

But Big Data can also trick us with impressive numbers like our Twitter followers or Facebook friends − but who within that number are encouraging each other to support our causes? Though ‘numbers don’t lie,’ statistics do, so an organization must know how it’s going to parse the data is collecting and what it hopes to achieve with the effort.

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| Category Advice, Communications, Community, Crowdfunding, Development, Fundraising, Marketing Skills, Measurement, Media Review, Nonprofit, Public Media, Public Relations, Resource, Site Administration, Social Marketing, Social Media, Social Networks, Strategic Marketing, Thought for the Day, Tools | | Comments Off

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#SOCIALMEDIA: How Can We Efficiently Use Our Time On Social Networks?

How are you measuring your time?

A definition of irony: using social media to encourage you to find ways to trim your time on social media. But the real goal is efficiency, and it comes with great financial and emotional rewards. According to a survey done by the enterprise platform Harmon.ie last summer, “45% of employees work only 15 minutes or less without getting interrupted, and 53% waste at least one hour a day due to all types of distractions. That hour per day translates into $10,375 of wasted productivity per person annually, assuming an average salary of $30/hour.” Ouch.

Moreover, even if digital interruptions (responding to a tweet that just came in relevant to your nonprofit’s project, for example) are a valid and necessary part of what you do, what were you doing that got interrupted? And can you easily and smoothly get back on that track? Here are some recommendations to rethink how you are using your time and mental energies on social networks.

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| Category Advice, Civics, Communications, Community, How-to, Marketing, Marketing Skills, Measurement, Nonprofit, Project Management Tools, Public Media, Site Administration, Social Media, Social Networks, Technology, Technology for Nonprofits, Thought for the Day, Tools | | Comments Off

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#SOCIALNETWORKS: Sweat The Details, But Focus On The Big Picture

Attention 150x101 #SOCIALNETWORKS: Sweat The Details, But Focus On The Big Picture

In cyberspace, no one need hear you scream.

Ever feel like your nonprofit or small business is doing some pretty interesting stuff online to share the really interesting stuff you are doing in the real world − but no one seems to be hearing you? You are not alone in having those feelings, especially on a Monday − on a week that sees back-to- school for many kids and the start of the political convention season. We all could use a little pep talk.

Plenty of research shows that activity on social networks for businesses and charities pays dividends in many different ways, but what must be remembered is that some of those ways are not quantifiable. Which is not to say they do not have value. Consider this:

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| Category Advice, Advocacy, Blogs, Cause Marketing, Communications, Community, Fundraising, Marketing, Marketing Skills, Measurement, Media Review, Nonprofit, Public Media, Public Relations, Publications, Social Marketing, Social Media, Social Networks, Technology, Thought for the Day | | Comments Off

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#FUNDRAISING: Facebook Gives Pages & Apps To Nonprofits (Zuckerberg Gives Cash)

Facebook Nonprofits #FUNDRAISING: Facebook Gives Pages & Apps To Nonprofits (Zuckerberg Gives Cash)Facebook’s power on the social-networks scene need hardly be introduced, and thousands of nonprofits and charities have tapped into that power to expand and support their good work. But has the company offered any of its billions to those nonprofits and charities? Facebook, like Apple, does not have a philanthropic foundation like some other corporations, like Dell or Intel. Facebook’s CEO, unlike Apple’s, has given a great deal of charity on his own. Zuckerberg has taken the “Giving Pledge” drive initiated by Warren Buffett and Bill Gates, and he famously gave $100 million to the Newark (NJ) school system last year.

So if a charitable foundation is not part of the Facebook portfolio at this stage, what does it do to support the work of nonprofits?

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| Category Advice, Advocacy, Civics, Communications, Community, Crowdfunding, Facebook, Facebook, Facebook, Fundraising, Grants and Funding, Marketing, Nonprofit, Politics, Public Relations, Site Administration, Social Media, Social Networks, Technology for Nonprofits, Thought for the Day, Video | | 1 Comments

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#COMMUNICATIONS: A Storm & A Second Cause Disruptions That Remind Us Of Need For Vigilance (& Backups)

Power Out In Baltimore 150x110 #COMMUNICATIONS: A Storm & A Second Cause Disruptions That Remind Us Of Need For Vigilance (& Backups)

70+ mph winds and burning poles disrupt power

If you live in the Mid-Atlantic region, then you might not be reading this blog on the Monday it was (hopefully!) posted. A freak and unpredicted storm ripped through the region Friday night − an effect of the 100+ heat and no breezes to break up the high-pressure cell parked on the region. Power is now out for some 560,000 residents of the Baltimore area, and millions in the region. The people who lost their lives in the storm (13 as we post), are of course the greatest tragedy, and we wish strength for the families.

From the perspective of communication and technology, the storm knocked out servers at Amazon, Instagram, Pinterest, and Netflix, and the first two of that list especially struggled through the weekend. To make matters worse, the world’s “Coordinated Universal Time” clock tacked on an extra second on Saturday to account for irregularities in the earth’s rotation. Reddit, FourSquare, LinkedIn, and StumbleUpon were some of the highest-profile services to fall victim to the extra tick. What can be learned from all this mayhem?

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| Category Communications, Community, Media Review, News and Current Affairs, Newspaper Article, Nonprofit, Public Media, Site Administration, Social Media, Technology, Technology for Nonprofits, Thought for the Day | | Comments Off

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#Fundraising: However Counted, Charitable Giving Rose Slightly in 2010

fireworks 150x1502 #Fundraising: However Counted, Charitable Giving Rose Slightly in 2010

Happy Independence Day!

First, MKCREATIVE wishes you a happy Independence Day. We hope you are enjoying a day of grilling and a night of fireworks – all with family and friends. We also ask you to remember the hundreds of thousands of servicemen and women who have suffered injuries, lost dear friends, and endured multiple deployments in our multi-front ‘war on terror.’ They will not be enjoying the grilling and fireworks, but (whatever you think politically about these wars) they are helping ensure that you and I can.

But on this most American of holidays, we note an uptick in one of Americans’ greatest characteristics: philanthropic generosity. The Giving USA Foundation recently reported both a reappraisal of how the organization tallies up charitable giving and a slight improvement in giving in 2010. This uptick is all the more noteworthy, given the ongoing malaise that grips our economy.

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| Category Community, Development, Fundraising, Grants and Funding, Measurement, News and Current Affairs, Nonprofit, Storytelling, Thought for the Day | | Comments Off

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#Tech: Does The Smartphone Move Us To A Post-PC, Post-Camera, Post-mp3 player… World?

buggles 150x150 #Tech: Does The Smartphone Move Us To A Post PC, Post Camera, Post mp3 player... World?

But does anybody watch music videos any more?

Few things in life are more futile, and such great fun, as predicting the future. From Francis Fukuyama’s The End of History to Harold Camping’s Time Has An End (the web design exhibited here ended, thankfully, about 1997), we invariably misunderstand what will be the next big thing. And when we get it wrong we tend to argue that we were misunderstood. Or the true meaning will be revealed/discovered later.

But throwing caution to the wind can be one of the perks of blog writing, so we thought we’d follow PCWorld‘s Jeff Bertolucci into the abyss, as he argues all the (10) technologies that the smartphone has killed off over the last 5-6 years. I’ll go first: my pocket/academic calendar, still received each September as a quaint reminder of a simpler age, goes straight to the recycling bin. My phone’s multi-sync, multi-repeat, alarm-tweaking calendar keeps track of my mess of a schedule.

You can play along at home, of course: what technologies have you given up over the last few years thanks to your phone-cum-computer? What technologies do you use now that you suspect your phone will be doing before the Cubs with the Series? Before you click for ‘more,’ take a moment to consider…

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| Category Advice, iPhone Apps, Media Review, Opinion, Software Review, Technology, Thought for the Day, Tools | | Comments Off

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Happy Martin Luther King Day

Martin Luther King Day was signed into law by Ronald Reagan in 1983 and first observed in 1986. Either in the spirit of nonviolent protest encouraged by desegregate public transportation in Birmingham Alabama in 1955, for example. But many still challenge his stand against corporate capitalism.

 Happy Martin Luther King Day

| Category Community, Development, Fundraising, Grants, Grants and Funding, Nonprofit, Resource, Thought for the Day, Web and Print | | Comments Off

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Harsh Op-Ed On ‘Charitable Scrooges’

scrooge mcduck 150x150 Harsh Op Ed On ‘Charitable Scrooges’Debates about social media as catalyst, about political responses to economic crises, about open internets, about the care of our health… can help us sharpen our own positions and/or encourage us to take on ideas that we had avoided. This particular blog outlet tends to focus on the nexus of nonprofits, politics, and communications technologies, and we strive to show some of ‘the other side’ of a given issue. Yet when Pablo Eisenberg’s recent op-ed from the Chronicle of Philanthropy arrived through our tweet stream, we were admittedly hard pressed to stay on his side – though his passion is to be admired. You should read his ideas in their entirety first. Go ahead, we’ll be here when you get back. (more…)

| Category Advocacy, Banking & Finance, Community, Fundraising, Grants and Funding, National/International, News and Current Affairs, Nonprofit, Opinion, Politics, Thought for the Day | | Comments Off

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