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November 10, 2008


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our man in cameroon

That is great info. Just talking to another charity today here in Bamenda about how they could use it.

For an African charity, for me the main attraction is transparency. Several hundred pics on your Flickr count alone demonstrates what you do and where the money goes. You couldn't fake that.

Getting people to trust you is often the hardest part.


Hi Rachel,

This is a really good back-to-basics explanation of where to start and where you can go. Fantastic.

We're also really chuffed that you featured our Facebook page, Twitter feed and YouTube channel in this! It's great to be able to both learn from other charities and offer an example to any just starting out with social media. We're all in this together!

Thank you so much.



I watched the presentation several weeks ago and on my list to do very very soon at work (University of Central Lancashire Students' Union) is to put some sort of social media strategy in place.

We're already using networks like Ning to help us communicate with specific sets of our members and create communities of students where they can interact, share ideas and raise issues with us that we can then act on. A key thing for us is to give our members control (up to a point) of those networks, and they've responded really well and grasped it.

We've started using flickr, we're going to start using twitter, and just trying to push as much of our content out across different social media.


Thanks for the comments, all.

Glad it was useful and worked out in the way I envisaged - I wanted to keep it simple and have some clear take-outs, as there are a lot of presentations out there that cover social media as a concept, or hypothesise about it's applications. Giving real examples is so much more accessible, I think, and it saves trying to explain what each platform is and what it does - which can just be difficult to grasp otherwise, for the uninitiated.

I agree, that for charities like Mara Triangle, and many overseas aid agencies and development charities, social media offers huge opportunities to bring people closer to their work and create a real connection. People have always needed to know that their support makes a difference, and social media is just a gift in that respect.

I also showed Mara Triangle because they've achieved so much with so little in the way of money or manpower, including generating significant donations (which is what most charities are going to want to see to assure themselves that investment in social media is worthwhile) so they are a fantastic example to organisations who think they can't manage to dip a toe in.

Ed, as an alumna of UCLAN, I shall be looking forward to seeing all the social media activity you have in the pipeline and maybe engaging with some old friends as a result!

Phil Greaney

An interesting presentation - I do similar stuff in introducing social media for education. I think your emphasis on seeing how social media is actually employed can be very useful for those interested in using it. I liked, too, your guide to 'what to do next' - some good ideas, I might borrow that!

Speaking of borrowing - did you get clearance for the images? I think I recognise at one from Flickr that is copyrighted. You can't be too careful with these things...



Rachel Beer

Thanks for your comment, Phil. I'm glad you found the real-life examples useful. Much easier to grasp like that, I think.

The 'what to do next' bit was very short and simple because I wanted to give people some really easy take outs and actions that they could take to get started. The article I wrote for CharityComms (which is also linked within the post) went into a bit more detail on the strategy and planning side of things, in suggesting a process.

If you do borrow, it would be great if you'd credit me (where the presentation is hosted, on Slideshare, it's licensed under Creative Commons as 'All rights reserved') :)

On the last page I have noted that all photos are either @ iStockphoto or @Rachel Beer - in the hope that people would notice and no one would use them for any other purposes without seeking the appropriate permissions. Only a couple of the shots are my own. The rest are all used legally, although I know that's not always the case in presentations. When you put them on the web, you need to be careful about that kind of thing!

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