Last month the team spent an evening being and good being social…

“Founded in August 2010 by Ross McCulloch of Third Sector Lab, Be Good Be Social brings together third sector professionals interested in social media for social good. The events are a chance to learn, debate and connect with others working for non-profits, charities and social enterprises. Unlike traditional conferences Be Good Be Social combines networking, inspirational talks, practical workshops and, importantly, the chance to collaborate in a relaxed, friendly environment. You’ll hear real-life case studies, ground breaking new ideas and hands-on solutions.

The events are for social media newbies as well as the digital die-hards. Coming along to Be Good Be Social will help you understand:

– The practicalities of where to start with social media

– The benefits of Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, blogging and beyond for third sector organisations.

– The risks involved in your organisation’s social media presence.

– Strategies for effectively engaging with supporters, donors and partners.

– How you can measure your social media success.”

The evening kicked of by everyone asking themselves “what are we all doing here?” the answer being to talk about meaningful engagement. Martin Keane ( the first full-time member of staff dedicated to social media in a Scottish charity, One Kind ) was first up. Martin talked about breaking his audience down into thought leaders / advocates/ lurker / newbies. I was particularly intrigued by his concept of a social media volunteer, he talked about ‘mini movement builders’

Martins talk echoed two of the messages we push out when delivering Studio Unbound sessions ; being online levels the playing field and it’s about making connections with individuals. I liked his advice to always keep an air of mystery around your online profile, something Cassie and I have spoken about lately in response to noticing the way people use these tools is shifting.

The audience then split into two to attend workshops: one delivered by ourselves and the other by the brilliant Steve Bridger

We split our audience into groups of three:

1. We are about Marketing -we want to improve our brand through all channels!

“Our brand is important to us and our future service users. We want to improve out brand reputation across all channels. How do we integrate both online and offline media so we don’t forget our offline service users?”

2 We are about Feedback

“We maintain a Scottish Heritage site. We often send out questionnaires but get a low response. How can we keep up to date with what our followers thing of us and improve our service?”

3. We are about Reinforcement

“We connect to young people through the phone. How do we ensure that our message is concise if we start to spread ourselves across all of our channels?”

Each group had a one character to focus on. We had elements of a story board to complete that tied in with channels their characters already used…websites / personal devices / networks / outlook etc.

Each group designed new ways of interacting to answer their question:

1. Marketing: Our solution focused on the online as well as the offline. The motivation behind the interactions was creating something for greater good. Our character joined and then used newspaper club. This newspaper was then delivered to our characters local  library ( characters daughter designed the paper from Oz over the phone ). We then held an event and got a student Social Reporter to come along, during this event we developed some ideas for potential apps.

2. Feedback: #schmob is a flash mob event designed for Scottish Heritage organisation. It involved lots of bicycles and mountain climbing . When you reach certain mountain you get a point, you upload an image to the Scottish Hertiage site. Inspired by MyCanmore.

3. Reinforcement: Our group took our user through an online journey but allowing her to help someone begin the same journey offline. By calling Child Line, the organisation slowly start engaging her in online tools. Inspired by the Samaritans who offer emotional support via text messaging

The workshop taught us that people really responded well to the visual tools we used. Also, building up characters with the group rather than using pre-defined personas works well to make it real. Never underestimate the power of a persona! Using stories to bring things to life and make stuff tangible is brilliant fun!

Rosie MacIntosh (who tweets from @oxfamscotland ) was up next and opened her talk by saying “because we work in a charity, every day we go into work we are changing the world bit by bit”. We like it. She told us all about Oxfam’s: citizen journal network. It is brilliant.

“What is a citizen journalist anyway?

If you listen to Andrew Marr, we are ‘inadequate, pimpled and single’

Well, maybe we are, but we’re lots of other things too. We’re people who are concerned about the world around us. We’re people who see injustice, and instead of turning the page or changing the channel,  take action. We’re people who have something to say.

If that sounds like you, why don’t you join us?”

One girl called Helena has been championing the initiative and recently wrote an article on how to find the perfect outfit for an interview in Oxfam. Follow them on twitter

Oh, and you can read what other good, social people saying about the event…and the conversation is still going… join in!

Huge round of applause for Ross for making it happen and thanks @jubilee for the awesome pics.

Here’s to being good and being social!