volunteer experience Archives - Syneka Marketing

Managing Volunteers - Take the Next Step

Managing Volunteers – Take the Next Step

By Advice, Advice for Not-for-profit Organisations and Charities, Presentations, Resources No Comments

Many not-for-profit organisations rely on volunteers for service delivery and to assist with administration and other functions.

Managing Volunteers – Take the Next Step, was a full day conference hosted by the Shire of Yarra Ranges and Eastern Volunteers. The conference discussed several topics relevant to volunteer management national standards, the steps required to prepare an organisation for volunteers, as well as marketing and promoting an organisation.

I presented a session for the afternoon workshop, discussing the Essentials of Social Media and Marketing.  The presentation discussed the need for a strategic marketing approach, to identify aims and to understand what would attract volunteers to assist with the organisation.

Organisations need consistent messages to demonstrate the volunteer experiences that are created through their involvement.  Messages need to be communicated using a range of marketing tools to reach prospective volunteers through multiple communication channels.

Social media is one of the tools that can be used to reach prospective volunteers and should be considered as a part of a cohesive marketing campaign.  Social media should be integrated with website content, providing the seamless ability to update websites, as well as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other social media sites

It is important to utilise the strengths of each tool and one advantage of social media is the ability to share content.  The intent should not necessarily be to develop viral content, but to ensure your target audience is able to distribute content and share their views on being involved with the organisation.  Stories can be very effective and assist in providing content that can be shared.  The sharing of content is the online equivalent of word of mouth recommendations and can help reach the connections of people already involved with the organisation.

Successful volunteer recruitment will use a mix of tools to reach prospective volunteers, supported by consistent messages and a cohesive marketing approach. Marketing encompasses more than promotional tools, such as brochures or flyers, but every form of interaction that someone has with an organisation.

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BizMaroondah EmployAssist Forum

By Advice for Businesses, Advice for Not-for-profit Organisations and Charities No Comments

The BizMaroondah EmployAssist Forum is a Council initiated event that invited businesses to learn about the forms of assistance that exist when recruiting new employees. The forum included several community organisations that are involved in assisting jobseekers, with the aim of supporting business growth.

Eastern Volunteers was invited to the forum as an organisation that provides volunteer recruitment. People are increasingly using volunteer roles as a way to develop skills that can assist in gaining potential employment. Research undertaken by BizMaroondah has indicated that employers look favourably upon potential employees that have volunteer experiences.

The forum successfully connected businesses with these community organisations and will hopefully lead to new employment opportunities within Maroondah.

Alex presenting Social Media and Volunteers at a training session for Volunteering Warrnambool

Volunteering Warrnambool – Social Media and Volunteers

By Advice for Not-for-profit Organisations and Charities, Government, Presentations, Resources No Comments

Volunteering Warrnambool serves as a volunteer resource centre, aiming to encourage volunteering within Warrnambool and southwestern Victoria.  The service, which operates through Warrnambool City Council, holds regular training sessions for volunteer based organisations.

I was invited by Volunteering Warrnambool to conduct a training session to assist organisations in utilising social media as a marketing tool.  Social media can complement existing marketing activities and provide further opportunities to promote causes, engage stakeholders and recruit volunteers.

Alex presenting Social Media and Volunteers at a training session for Volunteering Warrnambool

Alex presenting Social Media and Volunteers at a training session for Volunteering Warrnambool

The session provided an overview on marketing, including the need for organisations to develop key messages and consistency between their marketing activities.

In developing these messages it is often useful to consider the strengths of the organisation and how these attributes can benefit the target market.  While not-for-profit organisations tend to avoid framing their stakeholders in marketing terms, it is important to consider that most organisations will have multiple target markets.  For example, target markets may include clients, volunteers, business partners and government, who interact with the organisation is different ways.

While the type of interaction with these stakeholders may differ, there should be a common message that builds upon the strengths of the organisation.  This approach assists an organisation in considering the best methods to engage each of these target markets to ensure maximum impact.

It is important to consider the best methods of communication to each reach target market. It is worth considering social media as one of these tools, particularly in extending the online presence and reach of an organisation.

An organisation’s website needs to reflect the branding and key messages that are used in all other forms of communication.  The website should serve as the basis for online communications by feeding updates into social media tools, such as Facebook and Twitter, as well as email based newsletters.

Integration ensures that there is consistency between these tools, while providing ongoing updates to stimulate discussion.  Social media is a two-way communication tool and it is important to maintain ongoing dialogue to further engage the online community.

While there are several well-established social media tools, there are emerging platforms such as Pinterest, which enables people to pin images and multimedia and to share this with their networks.  Not-for-profit organisations can utilise Pinterest to capture volunteer experiences using imagery and videos.

Alex guiding participants through the creation and use of social media.

Alex guiding participants through the creation and use of social media.

Social media is part of the overall approach that an organisation can use to to reach their communities and stakeholders and needs to be considered in the context of a marketing strategy.

View Digital storytelling for nonprofits

#npau TweetChat – Digital storytelling for nonprofits

By Advice, Advice for Not-for-profit Organisations and Charities 3 Comments
Retelling experiences and word-of-mouth recommendations are particularly important in reaching prospective volunteers.

Retelling experiences and word-of-mouth recommendations are particularly important in reaching prospective volunteers.

The #npau TweetChats are fortnightly conversation’s organised by ConnectingUp, a not-for-profit organisation that encourages the use of technology within the community sector.

Each fortnight the TweetChat covers topics relevant to the not-for-profit and community sector with people able to participate through the sending tweets with the #npau hashtag.

While we were unable to participate in today’s tweetchat due to workshop commitments, the topic of digital storytelling for nonprofits covered a similar theme to one of the items addressed during our workshop to the Hume-Moreland Volunteer Coordinators’ Network.

Digital storytelling is particularly effective in recruiting volunteers through social media. Research undertaken by the Australian Bureau of Statistics indicates that 35% of people become volunteers because they were asked, while 29% knew someone involved in a voluntary experience. These statistics highlight the importance of word-of-mouth recommendations in promoting voluntary experiences.

Sharing content through social media is the online equivalent of word-of-mouth advertising. Social media through blogging and the sharing of content, enables volunteers to discuss their experiences in volunteering for an organisation and ways other people can become involved.

The use of videos and blogs can personalise a volunteer experience and encourage others to consider volunteering. This content can be shared via Facebook, Twitter and other social media tools to reach prospective volunteers.

Digital storytelling through the retelling of experiences is how not-for-profit organisations can use social media in recruiting prospective volunteers.

We’ve included a selection of slides to highlight how digital storytelling and social media can be effective tools in recruiting volunteers.

View Digital storytelling for nonprofits – Recruiting volunteers through social media

For the full presentation please view “Using Social Media for Recruiting Volunteers – Hume-Moreland Volunteer Coordinators Network