A Video Approach You Can’t Stop Watching

pre-digital_flipchart If you’re here because our main page video grabbed your eyeballs and wouldn’t let go, you’re in good company. The technique is often referred to as “whiteboard video” and those of a certain age will understand why. My own career included more sessions than I can count where someone got the grease pen and the job of scribing meeting highlights on the white flip chart. Today’s choices are light years beyond in impact, and without the alcohol smell! If you’d like information on how to access content like this use the contact link and we’ll be in touch right away.
If you HAVEN’T seen the video, here it is.

CMS? – What’s in it for You?

Our WordPress websites look to the world like what we’re all accustomed to seeing on the Internet, but hidden beneath the surface is the special value – the content management system. Anyone who can create a document or work with pictures from a camera or a download can quickly master the tools that allow for self-management of site content. Add or change copy, create new blog posts, add pictures to posts and pages, include video from YouTube or elsewhere – all with minimal instruction. And all of our options include the support to get you started. This image shows the same page with the web view on the left and the edit view on the right:

A look behind the web page. Note the yellow highlighting of identical copy.

A look behind the web page. Note the yellow highlighting of identical copy.

Neighbourhub – the backstory

for_backstory_postEarly evening in mid-town Toronto, a meeting room filling with neighbours out for the Annual General Meeting of one of seven Ratepayer Associations touching on the crossroads of a major business area. The guest speaker is the newly recruited Chief City Planner and we’re on site to videotape her address for the Association’s website. The issue is condo development and once question period arrives it becomes clear that passions among the roughly 200 attendees run high on the subject.

We have spent the better part of a year previous to this evening learning and practicing the emerging business of social media marketing. Our understanding of how unstoppable is the force of community forming online, our expanding knowledge of tools and methods for supporting the objectives of online communities – these and other “parts” contribute to a dawning awareness after the edit and after a conversation over coffee with the video client. He has served as a volunteer Board Member for ten years on the neighbourhood association dedicated to preserving and enhancing quality of life in his community.for_backstory_post2 Our conversation makes it clear that he and his colleagues have a sense that they need more than a website maintained by a neighbour/volunteer. They sense that social media, Facebook in particular, could offer them a place to foster community in a way helpful to growing membership. They see that doing this successfully would build the treasury and increase the influence they could bring to their lobbying efforts. But who has the time and how much would it all cost?

I left that chat with some ideas. After a month of research I had better ideas.  Working with a colleague we developed a vision for growing neighbourhood groups by using the same tools that were/are seeding and nurturing communities of common interest on every subject in every corner of the world. This website is the tip of the iceberg. Together with the more than 500 RPAs in Ontario and countless more across Canada and North America we are going to change the way we live in neighbourhoods, and the way we connect with our neighbours.  Developers and politicians beware. Unless you’re working for us…

Next Steps

Why All Three? – Website-Blog-Facebook

You could watch TV without the sound system or the PVR, but the combination – the suite of products  – takes the experience to new heights.

That’s as close as I can come to describe the necessity to develop your Association website, blog and Facebook presence simultaneously.  Impact. Experience. Added Value. The combination offers the straightest line to recognition, relevance, membership, funding and influence. Offer a path to  a vibrant community online, with every supportive tool we provide, and you reach and exceed your objectives for community-building while others are still debating whether they should try one approach or another. Your investment is quickly returned, then compounded into the future. Maybe you’ve looked at the product and pricing information already. Maybe you should take another look.

Let Members Blow Your Horn

It is said that social media is word of mouth on a grand scale.  Your neighbours will engage with your online presence far more often than in any other way.  Take every opportunity to solicit and present every good thing said about your work.  If you really want to make a difference in your community encourage members to blog and post about how their lives have been affected.

In the world of marketing, brands have discovered that if they tell their audience that they are the best, 14% of listeners will believe them. If you tell ten friends the very same thing about the brand, 90% of your friends will believe it.  If your members encourage their neighbours to believe in the value your many volunteer hours create you’re pretty much assured of a growing membership.

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