Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Nonprofit Idea Roundup

I came across several very interesting articles this week which had little in common except that they were good ideas or good news or just something I didn't know. Here they are (in no particular order):
  • Facebook is testing private messaging for Pages: If you had a brand Page in the olden days (like last year), you could privately message the people in your community. When FB did its re-vamp, that ability went away. Now it may be coming back, and with some extras.
  • Twitter rolled out a new look, but you may not have seen it applied to your page, yet. This is because - as I just recently found out - only people with smartphones (ios or android; 38% of the population) can get it. Next up will be the iPad, with the plan to provide a consistent look across all platforms. If you don't have a smartphone, well... you just have to wait.
  • Even though yours is a small nonprofit, you may (we hope) find yourself in the enviable position of not being able to sustain your community via FB another platform, or you may just want to interact in a different, more idiomatic way. In which case, you may have to think about creating your own space. Here are Fifteen Best Practices for Managing Your Web Development Project at Social Signal. As someone who has worked as a project manager, I think this article covers the areas that need covering and provides some insights to setting limits and expectations.
  • Throughout 2011, a common thread among all social media predictions and advice has been community. To me, this means seeing yourself as part of the whole. Now, maybe you think you've always done this, but I'll argue that social media has redefined the term to include people you might not have considered. In this thought-provoking article, NPQ examines how social media has made 'outsiders' part of the community.
In particular, I'd love to know what you think about social media providing people not normally or regularly involved with you or your staff (i.e., outsiders) with the ability to affect your planning or tactics. You can do this by leaving a contribution in the comment box.

A Good Idea: PDF to HTML

I haven't tried this tool, yet, but I will. Sometimes you have a perfectly nice document in PDF, but you need to be able to have it in another format. You can always upload the PDF onto a website, but maybe you want to do more with it. Or maybe you want to send it to someone who wants to use parts of it or modify it and you don't have Acrobat's full version. OCR is iffy and doesn't maintain the formatting, which supposedly this tool does. As I've said, I haven't used it, but if it seems like something you might find handy, try it and let me know how it worked for you.

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