Social Media Outreach – An Idea to Watch from the DMA Nonprofit Conference

I attended a great session on social media at the DMA Nonprofit Conference last week.  Folks at the Arbor Day Foundation are conducting an interesting social media project.  They identified 100,000 donors with email addresses and then worked with to identify folks who are also active in social media (on Facebook, Linked In, Twitter, Google+, YouTube and more).

They came up with a group of about 10,000 people that had three of more social connections, folks they dubbed “social media-ites”.  Combined, those 10,000 people had about 400,000 followers; their top two social media-ites have 17,000 followers.  That’s a lot of potential new people for an organization to reach!

Next they gave every one of the 10,000 a social influence score determined by looking at:  1) social relevancy (are they talking about your issue or Justin Beiber?) 2) social impact (how influential are they?) and 3) social reach (how many connections do they have?).

Now the organization has begun reaching out with one-on-one communications to the top few hundred people with the best social influence scores.  This includes sending emails, following them, retweeting them, etc.

In the coming months, Arbor Day Foundation will be tracking the behavior of their top scoring “social media-ites” in terms of giving.  They are also tracking the engagement that results from their friends. I, for one, can’t wait to see how this one turns out.


Have you tried any interesting ideas for reaching out to your followers on social media?  If so, I’d love to hear about it.


– posted by Kathy Swayze, CFRE

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