The last thing a reporter/journalist needs is another press release and a poorly written one at that. From my guess and judging by the number of press releases I see published across news wires on a daily basis, my guestimate is that a journalist receives anywhere from 50-200 press releases in their inbox on any given day. Considering the limited media space available for new stories every day, I'm also guessing that at least 80-90% of those press releases never make it to the news, yet they keep coming. The worst part of it all is that half of those press releases are written by so called PR people and the other half are written internally by some staff person at the company that has the tough job of convincing the media that what they have to share is even news worthy.
Last week, I had the honor of being invited by the Associate Dean of the University of Miami’s School of Education to present a lesson before a Master’s Degree level Non-profit Management course for those either work within the non-profit sector, currently run an organization, or have an interest in starting a non-profit. Being the social media strategist that I am, I dived right into the presentation discussing advanced level strategies for how to convert followers on social media into ambassadors, brand evangelists, and ultimately, supporters. It was not until I was asked by one of the students to start from the very beginning about what Twitter was and how to use it that it dawned on me that there is a major disconnect between social media and non-profit organizations. Obviously, it’s advantageous for non-profits to maximize their communications platform by using social media as an engagement, outreach, and donor cultivation tool. However, I find that the majority of non-profits still lack the understanding of how to use social media to capture and engage audiences.