Social networking a must for fundraisers

Nico Baird

FUNDRAISING has always been a very important part of any organisation’s daily tasks. Most charitable organisations are dependent on donations and support from the public.

In this day and age, however, it is more difficult to get the support you need. There are so many organisations bidding for the same support that you really need to do that little extra to get attention.

In the past few weeks I have been asked by organisations to help them harness the Internet to generate income. Most organisations do not have websites or even have someone around with the knowledge to utilise all the tools available.

Most of these tools are free and can generate large income if they are utilised correctly. But I think that at times it is a question of being penny wise and pound foolish.

There are a number of things that organisations can do, but I do believe that the most important is to create your own social network online. Creating a Facebook group to link to your website and also to get people to join your cause is the first step.

Please note that there are more than one social network out there and as organisation, joining more than one will be in your best interest. You will see how quickly people join your cause.

These groups grow bigger and bigger on a daily basis and as organisations you immediately have access to a large number of people who support your cause. Through the Internet and your social network platform, you can now directly and easily communicate with them and if needed mobilise them to action.

Organisations not embracing the world of social networking and new media will need to re-examine their strategies. If you want support you will need to go where the people are, and they are online all the time.

Podcamp South Africa to be hosted in Bloemfontein – 19 April 2008

DURING November 2007 I attended the first Podcamp to be hosted in South Africa.

Podcamp Cape Town was a huge success and my greatest wish was for Podcamp to come to Bloemfontein, to the centre of South Africa.

I am proud to be able to announce that Podcamp South Africa will be held in Bloemfontein on 19 April.

A PodCamp is a usually free BarCamp-style community UnConference for new media enthusiasts and professionals, including bloggers, podcasters, YouTubers, social networkers and anyone curious about new media.

The first PodCamp was held from 8 to 10 September 2006 in Boston, Massachusetts. PodCamps   are now being held worldwide.

PodCamp is not just about podcasting.

If you are interested in blogging, social media, social networking, podcasting, video on the net, if you are a podsafe musician (or want to be), or   just   someone curious about new media, this is an event you cannot afford to miss.

PodcampSA is free to attend and at this stage we are looking for sponsors and people in the new media community to get involved, not only to attend, but to spread the word and lend a hand.

I was asked “why Bloem? Why not Cape Town or Johannesburg?” and my answer has always been, “Why not Bloemfontein?” We may not have the biggest new media community, but I think it is because we are not aware of each other, everybody is busy with their own thing, not knowing that there are others in Bloemfontein that could possibly assist you.

If you want to get involved please visit www.podcampsa.com and register to attend this event. The new design of the website should go live soon!

People or companies who would like to help or sponsor any part of the podcamp, can send an email to nico@clicksa.co.za.

Pangea Day

In 2006 the visionary documentary filmmaker, TED Prize winner and founder of Pangea Day, spoke at the TED conference. At this conference she unveiled her wish to change the world through the power of film.

To find out more about Pangea Day I went to the www.pangeaday.org website and after watching an incredibly well produced trailer. I found the following information.

 

Pangea Day taps the power of film to strengthen tolerance and compassion while uniting millions of people to build a better future. In a world where people are often divided by borders, difference, and conflict, it’s easy to lose sight of what we all have in common. Pangea Day seeks to overcome that – to help people see themselves in others – through the power of film.

On May 10, 2008 – Pangea Day – sites in Cairo, Dharamsala, Kigali, London, New York City, Ramallah, Rio de Janeiro, and Tel Aviv will be video conferenced live to produce a 4-hour program of powerful films, visionary speakers, and uplifting music.

I love the fact that if you have access to a venue where a screening can be arranged on the 10th of May you can submit it to the website and it will be listed. Two venues in SA will be screening the event, but I honestly hope that a venue in Bloemfontein will come forward and give their facilities for this cause. Not only will they be doing their part, but they will get quite a bit of exposure around the world. If you have a screening facility available let me know and I will assist you in setting it up.

Let’s put Bloemfontein on the map and do our part. Visit http://www.pangeaday.org today and watch the short trailer and get involved.

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The Knowledge Age (TED)

WE are living in the knowledge age and having access to information on demand is vital to the way we live and do business. Through the Internet we can now easily access knowledge we would otherwise probably never have had access too.

An example of this knowledge being shared is TED. TED stands for Technology, Entertainment and Design. It started out in 1984 as a conference bringing together people from these three worlds. Since then its scope has become ever broader. Each year TED brings together the world’s most fascinating thinkers and doers who are challenged to give the talk of their lives. These talks are on average about 18 minutes long and are just amazing to watch. They gather to spread their ideas and share their thoughts.

Only a 1000 people are allowed to attend the event each year and a ticket is a sought after item. This year TED has put one ticket up for auction on Ebay. Amazingly in a matter of two days the bid for this single ticket has gone up to more than $30 000,00, that is just over R210 000,00. The bidding is still continuing and there is still a few days left for this auction.

But you do not have to be rich to have access to this conference. All you have to do is go to www.ted.com and there you can download and watch all the talks. You can even subscribe to the Video or Audio feed in iTunes and each week you will get two new talks.

This is a vital resource for educators because these videos are released under a Creative Commons license, so they can be freely shared and reposted.

If you want to view some of the best talks available given by some of the world’s thought leaders and pioneers then you should go to the website today.

It has been announced that a South African version of TED will take place in Cape Town later this year, but I will keep you posted as information becomes available.

 

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Podcamp in Kaapstad was Ongelooflik

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DIE afgelope naweek was dit die PodCamp in Kaapstad. Wat ’n ongelooflike ervaring. En om alles te kroon wen die Bokke toe ook.

Ek was uit die veld geslaan oor die ongelooflike sin van eenheid en gemeenskap wat ek in die Kaap ervaar het.

Die New Media-gemeenskap gesels saam, kuier saam en ondersteun mekaar geweldig. Dit het ontstaan, omdat die gemeenskap gereeld bymekaarkom om te gesels en gedagtes uit te ruil.

Ná gesprekke met van die groot name in New Media het ons besluit om ’n poging aan te wend om dieselfde soort eenheid hier in die Vrystaat te vestig deur gebruike daar ook hier te implimenteer.

Die eerste hiervan sal op 27 November wees.

’n Geruime tyd is daar elke maand op die 27ste van die maand ’n 27 Dinner.

Op hierdie aand kom almal in die New Media-gemeenskap bymekaar vir aandete.

Daar is gewoonlik ’n spreker, en indien jy die spreker wil wees, kan jy dit net aandui en jy sal die geleentheid kry.

Hierdie is ook die ideale geleentheid vir beleggers om kontak te maak met ontwikkelaars.

Jy as ontwikkelaar of ontwerper kan kontak maak met ander ontwikkelaars en so word nuwe samewerkingsgeleenthede geskep.

Die aande is gratis om by te woon en jy betaal slegs vir jou aandete. Dit vind gewoonlik in ’n restaurant plaas en daar heers ’n feestelike atmosfeer.

Indien daar iemand is wat belang stel om die geleentheid volgende maand by te woon of om die gasheer te wees kan hulle my laat weet. Ek glo vas daar kan ’n sterk gemeenskap in die Vrystaat wees. Ons moet net die eerste tree neem.

 

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Elektroniese nuusbriewe meer

Unwanted Gifts

EK word gereeld gevra om mense te help met die opstel van elektroniese nuusbriewe. Dit is iets wat ek ­geweldig geniet en wat my opgeval het, is die toename in hierdie ­versoeke.

Daar is vandag soveel opsies ­beskikbaar vir elektroniese nuusbriewe en van hierdie opsies is outomaties. Wanneer jy clickkliek se webblad besoek, sal jy ’n blokkie regs bo in die hoek sien waar jy jou e-posadres kan invoeg.

Elke keer wanneer ek nuwe inhoud op die webblad sit, sal daar outomaties die volgende oggend ’n nuusbrief aan almal gestuur word wat ingeteken het. Die beste hiervan is dat dit ’n gratis diens van Feedburner is. Indien jy dus ’n blog begin vir jouself of jou maatskappy sal ek dit sterk aanbeveel dat jy sommer dadelik ook by Feedburner gaan aansluit.

Skole, kerke en ander organisasies kan honderde rande spaar deur al hul lede op hul nuusbrief te laat inteken. Indien daar nuwe nuus is, kan die nuusbrief outomaties gestuur word.

Ek onthou nog die dae toe ons elke paar dae ’n omsendbrief by die skool gekry het en dan moet Ma of Pa dit teken om te bewys dat hulle dit gekry het. Die groot probleem was dat ek nooit onthou het om dit vir hulle te gee nie, maar as Ma of Pa internettoegang het, kan hulle ’n elektroniese omsendbrief ontvang. Indien jy ’n grafies ontwerpte nuusbrief wil uitstuur, kan dit werklik in enige program saamgestel word. My aanbeveling is slegs dat jy die finale produk in ’n algemeen beskikbare formaat sal plaas. Die Adobe Pdf-formaat is baie gewild en werk uitstekend.

My aanbeveling is dat jy altyd ook ’n paar gedrukte kopieë van die nuusbrief beskikbaar maak.Nico Baird is ’n direkteur van Dreamagineers Internasionaal.

 

Bfn-webontwerpers beïndruk

 

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DIE afgelope naweek het ek ’n openbaring beleef. Aan die einde van Oktober kom Rowan Polovin van myvideo.co.za hier in Bloemfontein ’n werksessie aanbied oor hoe om op die web ’n onderneming te vestig en ’n goeie inkomste te verseker.

Ek het besef dit is die ideale werksessie vir almal wat webbladsye in Bloemfontein ontwikkel. Ek besluit toe om ’n paar uur te bestee en op die web na ontwerpers in Bloemfontein te soek. Ek het verwag om dalk ’n handjievol te kry, maar groot was my verbasing toe ek nie minder nie as 20 webontwerpers opspoor.

Ek kon dit nie glo nie. Vir my was dit ’n warm gevoel toe ek van die bladsye besoek en vind die ontwerpers van Bloemfontein het nie nodig om vir enigiemand terug te staan nie. Omtrent 90% van die webontwerpers in Bloemfontein se bladsye is nie net indrukwekkend nie, maar is ook funksioneel en voldoen werklik aan die huidige neigings wêreldwyd.

Ek meen die plaaslike pryse is dalk nog ’n bietjie hoog en dat baie van die ontwerpers vereis jy moet jou webblad op hul servers stoor. Ek stem glad nie daarmee saam nie. Die rede hiervoor is omdat baie ontwerpers dieselfde produk herhaaldelik verkoop en nie wil hê iemand moet dit namaak nie. Ek verstaan dit ook, want ek skep self webbladsye, maar indien ek betaling ontvang daarvoor, is dit die eiendom van die een wat daarvoor betaal het.

Dit is regtig al probleem wat ek met van die plaaslike ontwerpers het. Die gehalte van die werk wat ek gesien het, is na my mening werklik van ’n internasionale standaard.

Indien jy enigsins daaraan dink om ’n webblad te ontwerp wil ek jou vra om beslis eers ’n ontwerper in Bloemfontein te kontak. Die werk van die gemeenskap sal jou voorwaar beïndruk.

Google launches new web application

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ON Tuesday Google launched its newest free webbased application. Now you can create presentations online.

Google has quite a number of webbased applications available, from a writing application, which replaces Word, to spreadsheets to replace Excell. Now you can also replace your PowerPoint application.

These online clones have a number of advantages and obviously some disadvantages.

The advantages are that it is free to use. You can access your documents from any computer with an internet connection. You can easily collaborate and share your work and know that the application will constantly be improved.

The disadvantage for me is that you need to be online to create a presentation or document.

This application allows you to upload your current presentations and edit it. You can save the files online or on your computer. To try it, go to: http://docs.google.com.

I am amazed at the exorbitant prices that some of these mainstream software packages still have today, if you consider that the main competition offers these applications for free through large companies like Google or through open source projects like OpenOffice.

In most countries universities and other government institutions have adopted these opensource packages, but the uptake in South Africa has been extremely slow. I think it is the fear of having to try something now.

OpenOffice also released their updated version of the programme on Tuesday.

If you want a complete suite of applications that include presentation software, writing tools and spreadsheets, you can download it for free.

It is very similar to the Office Packages that we all know with one big difference – its free.

To download it go to www.openoffice.org.

 

Tyd vir ‘n verandering!

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TYD vir ’n verandering!

’n Maand of twee gelede het ek besef dit is tyd vir ’n verandering.

Daar is só baie wat ek nog moet sien en doen dat ’n agt-tot- vyf-beroep nie by my meesterplan inpas nie.

Die internet het ook die nodige geleenthede vir my geskep om daardie angswekkende stap uit die sekere na die onbekende te neem.

Vandag is my laaste dag by die Sentrale Universiteit vir Tegnologie, Vrystaat (SUT).

Ek het besef Bloemfon­teiners het nie altyd toegang tot bekostigbare webontwerpers en korporatiewe opleidingsgeleenthede nie.

Dit het my aangespoor om hard te werk aan die vestiging van ’n onderneming wat bekostigbare webbladsye vir diegene wat dit nodig het, kan ontwerp en een wat korporatiewe opleiding verskaf. Enigiets van akademiese werksessies tot alles wat jy van die web en nuwe tegnologiese verwikkelinge wil weet. Die doelwit is om seker te maak inwoners van Bloemfontein sal nie net ingelig wees oor die internet nie, maar dat elkeen sal weet hoe om die internet doeltreffend te benut – wat beskikaar is en hoe om die wêreld in te vaar met net die kliek van jou muis se knoppie.

Dit is opwindend, dit is ’n wêreld wat gedurig verander en dit is werklik makliker en goedkoper as wat jy dink.

My rubrieke sal ook in die toekoms dalk meer krities en kontroversieel wees. Vir almal op wie se tone ek gaan trap, vra ek nou al verskoning. My mening is dalk soms nie gewild nie, maar ten minste is dit my eerlike mening. Ek sien uit daarna om steeds op ’n gereelde grondslag vrae en boodskappe van almal te ontvang.

 

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