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Twitter Use for Non-Profits

I wrote a guest post over at about 12 ways Non-Profits and Church’s can use Twitter.  The post is part of a series called “Top Twelve Tuesdays”.  Please go check it out.


How to get your organization to use social media.

Many organizations haven’t delved into social media yet; you are not alone.  You have probably read some guides telling everything you need to know on how to get started but while it is easy to write down the five steps to using social media it is exponentially  harder to actually get started or convince decision makers to spend time or money on it.

So, what do you DO now?  

Start with your personal social media brand.  Get on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter and start listening. This will give you personally a presence and help make you more comfortable selling social media to your organization.  It might even give you some real world examples to share with your organization.  This is the Twitter sign up page. You will need a username (use your real name so your firends can find you easily), a password and your email address.  After you sign up go to and click follow.  Then underneath the “what are you doing” type in “@ryanpaulsmith Hey Ryan, joining twitter after reading your blog”.  I respond and your life will never be the same again……

Second, start small.  Get a Twitter account for your company. Don’t try to invest the time it takes to run a good blog (even poor blogs take time and energy, ask me!) or even to get a branded presentable facebook page.  Twitter will give you a presence, a voice and a way to interact.  This interaction will allow to gain insight to guide which next steps are right for your specific situation.

What is a Tweetup?

If you are new to Twitter or not even on twitter yet, this site is for you.  Those kids in the advertising meeting kept talking about Tweety Bird but never Sylvester, this site is for you.

James Dickey’s Ten Commandments of Twitter

This is a great post of some guidelines that let you know if what you are doing or planning on doing on Twitter will be accepted.  

This is my favorite set of “rules” for the beginning Twitterers.  These guidelines will get you started in the right direction, especially the first rule.  Not everyone will use twitter the same, some celebrities will follow very few but have tens of thousand of followers while using twitter to broadcast more than have a conversation.  Others will not be interested in how many followers they get as they will be using Twitter to communicate with a small group of “real-life” friends.  

Because social media is so new there are rooms for many different styles; don’t let someone tell you you are doing things the wrong way before they know your goal!!