NLN18: Awareness, social media and building bridges in the nonprofit sector with Matt McIntyre

Twitter HeadshotMatt McIntyre is our guest for this episode of the Nonprofit Leaders Network to discuss Nonprofits and the digital space that is social media.

Matt is co-founder and executive director of Brackets For Good, an Indianapolis, Indiana based 501(c)3 charitable organization focused on activating new donors and increasing awareness for other nonprofit organizations through competitive, online fundraising at no cost.

Brackets For Good is a online fundraising tournament where local nonprofits compete against one another to ‘out-fundraise’ each other, advance through a bracket style tournament, so they’re competing head-to-head round by round. As they advance in this tournament, they’re gaining more dollars, more awareness, new donors, and the winning organization will have a chance to receive a $10,000 grand prize from a very generous corporate sponsor.

He is a Butler University graduate with a successful background in software marketing and previous experience in co-founding a nonprofit school for computer programming Eleven Fifty and marketing consulting company Sixty100.

Following are some of the key points from our discussion:

Social Media: A Leadership Opportunity

Almost always within nonprofits social media defaults to being the intern or volunteer task. Why should this be the case? Through digital platforms you are broadcasting a message to many people about your organization that you care so much about; but you are not really taking responsibility for and ownership of that strategy by simply delegating it. They don’t have as much experience of your organization, the good it’s doing and in telling its story, in telling your story. Find a way to spend time learning this new tool that is going to better the organization longer term. It is an amazing opportunity to tell your story to people who want to hear it. You’ve got to tell them the story and make sure they understand it. Own your organizations social media voice.

Crossing the Nonprofit Digital Divide: Just Take a Single Step

The digital world can seem a complicated and difficult space to operate in, which may in part explain why there is such a large number of nonprofits NOT engaged with it at all, or only in a very limited capacity. But really, you just need to start somewhere, anywhere, and doesn’t need to be a big action. I encourage organizations to see what tools they already have available to them, tools that are truly accessible. It could be as simple as making better use of your website or as simple as an email. Could you start a standard email newsletter to better engage with your board, or your volunteers, or your beneficiaries? What does it look like for you to start doing something today that can be a good stepping stone?

Don’t Be the Best Kept Secret Anymore: It’s Your Choice

We all know the old hat marketing terminology “Invest in Your Brand” right? In todays world nonprofits really should consider this in relation to digital development in the same was as they do flyers, traditional fundraisers and volunteer drives. When it comes to nonprofits operating in the digital space people gravitate to, discover, and learn more about something that they can relate to, access easily and that really appeals to them. So, when I say invest in your brand, I mean both raise your awareness and your outward communication, and social media is a great place to do that and reach a really wide audience with minimal effort and cost. So just don’t hesitate. Don’t be the best kept secret anymore.

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