Sunday, April 15, 2007

NTC Session - Web 2.0 for Communities

One of the sessions I attended at NTC was Web 2.0 for Communities, which is a topic I am very interested in.

American Cancer Society was used as an example of a nonprofit that used Web 2.0 technologies. Here is more information about their experience:

  • They defined their community. This consisted of anyone affected by cancer, events, volunteers & donors, and location
  • They researched the blogosphere and went to where people were. They started using tools like MySpace and Second Life.
  • They recently launched an online community at It has an rss feed which is from the ACS website. Their most popular feature is the gallery which allows users to share photos. Volunteers helped spread the word about this new community.
  • Relay for Life started on Second Life because a volunteer asked for this. They raised $5,000 their first year and $41,000 their second year.

Things to Do:

  • Find out what online communities people use
  • Find out what donors and volunteers do on these websites
  • Find people who are talking about the topic/issue on the Internet and connect with them
  • Use Technorati to find blogs about the topics/issue
  • Comment on blogs and provide a link to the organization

Thursday, April 12, 2007

NTC Session - Branding Through Websites: Building Your Brand From the First Click

One of the most useful sessions for me was the session titled "Branding Through Websites: Building Your Brand From the First Click". Websites can be branded by statements, information & functionality, priorization, and graphic design.

Here are some of the things I learned:

  • A tagline should be a brief phrase to associate with a logo.
  • Taglines should not change often.
  • A website with alot of information and resources shows that they are experts.
  • Searchable databases shows the depth of knowledge an organization has.
  • Emphasize some things and not others in navigation bar.
  • Choose only a few things to highlight on homepage
  • The navigation summarizes the site and the priorities of the organization.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

NTC Session - Classrooms Without Walls: Methods for Online Learning

The first session I attended at the Nonprofit Technology Conference was Classrooms Without Walls: Methods for Online Learning. I wanted to attend this session since my goal in the future is to develop e-learning and online training. I was curious to learn the different ways nonprofits were implementing online learning.

Most of this session was a review for me since I studied Instructional Systems Technology in college.

Here is some background information:

  • Online learning can be asynchronous or synchronous
  • Online courses can be full courses or by modules
  • Online learning can be in lecture format
  • Games can be used to learn more about a topic
  • Blogs can be a form of online learning
  • The learning/training can be individualized
  • People have different styles of learning and different learning styles can be used in online learning

Resources Shared:

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Thoughts about NTC 2007

What did I think about my first NTC?

Well, it was great meeting people in person who I have been communicating with on the internet. But I did not get a chance to meet everyone who I wanted to meet and wished I had more time to talk to the people I did end up meeting in person. For me, my goal as far as meeting people, was to meet people who I already knew of. This probably was a bad thing since I didn't make that much effort to meet others (I did end up meeting a few others though) . The people who I did finally get a chance to meet are the ones that I e-mailed when I tried to figure out how to break into nonprofit technology. I felt accomplished by meeting these people. I hope now that we have met face to face that our conversations will continue.

One thing I was the most looking forward to were the discussion tables, where some tables were different topics. But I did not get a chance to take part in this because by the time I got to lunch after the session that ended at noon, the tables were already filled. Plus, when I did get in the room, I had no clue where to look for them until it was announced. I did end up finding a seat at a regular table and that ended up fine. However, I was disappointed that I could not take part in these discussions.

Another thing I was looking forward to were the backchannel chats, mainly the unmoderated one. However, it seemed like no one was using these. (maybe it was because of the internet connection at the hotel?) It seems like the only thing that worked with the backchannel was the group/e-mail list that was created. In the last session on Friday, the one I wanted to go to didn't happen. My backup one was filled up, which was the one that was in the moderated chat. I even ended up going to where the computers were and went to the chat. Nobody was in there. This bothered me because if people who were not at NTC wanted to check these out, they could not. Maybe there should have been a note added to the page that said "due to the internet connection problems at the hotel, these moderated chats might not happen" or something similiar to that.

Here are the sessions I attended:
  • Classrooms Without Walls: Methods for online learning
  • Managing your Nonprofit IT Career
  • Building Better Online Fundraising Campaigns: Practical Tactics for Raising More Money via Email
  • Branding Through Websites: Building Your Brand From the First Click
  • Web 2.0 for Communities

I also attended part of the Flickr affinity group meeting.

One complaint about the sessions/meetings is that the attendees were all at different levels. Some were very new to the topics, and others were already familiar. Alot of us are familiar with many topics and would like to learn more. I would have liked to have seen two sessions for some topics where one is for beginners and learning about the topic and the other for ones already familiar with the topic and want to expand their knowledge. I honestly don't know if this idea could work, but it could be worth a try in the future.

I see these sessions and the introductions as a way to continue the conversations either in an e-mail list, blog, or somewhere else.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

NTC - Day 1

I spent the afternoon at NTC. I was able to meet lots of people and place faces with names of people I have been e-mailing. That was the most exciting part about today. There are still more I would like to meet and hope I'll be able to meet them.

I was at the Flickr group meeting for the first hour. I heard about what everyone wanted to learn about Flickr and other related issues.

Nonprofits want to learn more about using Flickr......
  • to organize photos with tags
  • for conferences
  • for photo contests
  • to use a tag to let members/participants share photos easier with the organization
  • to use the maps/geography feature to organize photos
  • to build community