Saturday, November 29, 2008

www.Change.ORG -- social networking services for non-profits


Woah! If social networking for good interests you, too, then check out the services provided by company www.Change.org.

Non-profit organizations can contract Change.org to develop a personalized social networking page for the organization, hosted on www.Change.org. The company also provides custom widgets, which can be embedded into the organization's independently managed social networking pages like Myspace and Facebook.

According to the company's website, Change.org is different from other social networking sites because it engages an older audience (older donors), thereby providing organizations with a way to "post specific fundraising campaigns, update donors on the progress of projects they've funded, create online advocacy campaigns, and capture important data about supporters and donors."

Also according to the website, Other benefits include:
Brand Your Social Network: Change.org will design your social network to match your website.

Fundraise: Post fundraising campaigns, accept online donations, and enable supporters to create personal fundraising pages and widgets to benefit your organization. (All 501(c)(3) donations are processed by our partner, Network for Good)

Start e-advocacy Campaigns: Start viral email advocacy campaigns to lobby elected officials and business leaders. Your organization gets the e-mail address of each new supporter that participates in your e-advocacy campaigns! (View Example)

Recruit New Supporters: Send "Supporter Requests" to recruit new members from across the Change.org community and allow your supporters to invite their friends and family to join your social network on Change.org.

Capture Supporter and Donor Data: Download supporter and donor contact information into Excel spreadsheets that can be imported into your organization's main database of contacts and/or e-newsletter mailing list.

Build Community: Connect your supporters with one another and enable them to share stories, write testimonials about your work, and post photos and videos.

Personalize Your Communication: Inform and inspire your supporters through blogging and sending private messages to your top fundraisers and activists.
In addition to all the tools listed above, Change.org will provide you with free consulting on how to best build and utilize your social network on Change.org. This includes Change.org Best Practices and consultation on how to integrate your Change.org social network with other Web 2.0 sites such as Facebook, MySpace and YouTube!




Change.org team member Heather Mansfield owns her own company, DIOSA | Communications. Diosa specializes in Web 2.0 Marketing, Web 2.0 Trainings, Webinars, and MySpace Design for nonprofit organizations, higher education, and small businesses. DIOSA publishes a monthly e-newsletter that includes MySpace, Facebook, YouTube, and Change.org Best Practices for Nonprofit Organizations. To sign up to receive the e-newsletter, go to this site. The company's website also provides links to some interesting articles on this subject matter. Check out the myspace page that Heather manages, too. She's holding a webinar on December 16th for non-profits new to Myspace.

I was recently reminded of Change.org because I heard that they are hooking up with Myspace to collect the public's ideas for the Obama Administration. According to this San Francisco Chronicle article, "shortly before I-Day on Jan. 20, the MySpacers and Change.orgers will announce the top 10 ideas, say which nonprofit organization will sponsor it, will and send it to the appropriate member of Obama's Administration via the 119 million-member megaphone that is MySpace." Why break from Change.gov? Change.org says that Change.gov doesn't allow the public to communicate with Obama "in ways they had become accustomed to during the campaign."

To share your ideas for the Obama Administration, go here, or here.

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