Book Review: Social Media Nonprofit Tweet

Earlier this year I reviewed some of the THINKaha series of books: Leadership Tweet and Quality Tweet.

Recently released a new book in the THINKaha series, Social Media Nonprofit Tweet.

It’s an exercise in crowdsourcing. The front cover says Janet Fouts wrote the book with Beth Kanter, but five pages in you’ll see the cast of characters who contributed to this book of bite-sized advice.

As with the entire THINKaha series, the idea is innovative: distilling down the most important advice into a series of tweets, this time specifically for the nonprofit sector.

Here’s a taste of some of the tweet-sized observations:

You already communicate, campaign, fundraise, serve and build community locally. With social media, you can do that with the world!

Search engines love social media. It’s like candy to them.

Focus on level of engagement, not raw numbers; leaders and creators, not sign-ups; movement and conversion across the web.

Something strange is happening here. It used to be that the web would provide you with the bite-sized pieces of advice, and a printed book would give you the substance. In this case, it’s reversed. The bite-sized advice is here on the page, and the in-depth stuff is on the blogs of some of the authors. Just look at the average post length on Janet and Beth’s blogs. There’s amazing value in each post.

I’m not sure the reversal works for me personally. When I read a book, I’m looking for narrative, I want to be led on a journey exploring an issue.

However, this could be just great for someone who’s new to social media, for whom the tweet-sized insights (like those above) could be great conversation-starters.

I guess no book exists in a vaccuum. Or at least, books like this don’t. Like other forms of media (social or otherwise) they exist in an ecosystem. This book may exist in conjunction with presentations, conversations, actual tweets, blog posts and videos – among other things. The aim is clear: to explain specifically to nonprofits how social media can make them more effective.

Bonus extra reading: Janet’s story of how the book came about.

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