A picture, they say, is worth a thousand words. And with digital social media, images are becoming both more common and more powerful as platforms such as Facebook and Google+ emphasize the photo and graphic qualities of their social-media networks. A kind of ‘visual economy’ is developing, within which social networks are competing and users are finding ever more refined ways to share their most interesting/compelling/entertaining work. With the ubiquity of smartphones with at-least decent cameras, nonprofits should be encouraging their staffs and volunteers to use those cameras to help tell the story of your organizations good work. One of the best ways to share that story is through. Let us show you how.
The general trend toward the sharing of images and video comes from a confluence of better camera technologies in smaller devices, from a growing comfort with the technology, and from a developing sophistication to categorize and to control what images are being shared with whom:
This Visual Economy is spreading fast due to several factors. First of all, people are being more careful with the visual content they share online, curating their life experiences and glossing over the ugly bits. Tech has improved too; desktop, mobile and tablet devices all have faster connections making higher quality visual content easier to share. Plus, competition between different social channels has increased (particularly between Facebook and Google) who seek new ways for personalize user accounts to differentiate their channels. (on SocialMediaToday.com)
Flickr was launched in 2004 and then was bought up by Yahoo! a year later, who slowly phased out its own Yahoo! Photos service (rather like what Facebook might do with Instagram). It still remains the most popular photo-sharing site, with a global Alexa status of 31. So your organization will tap into a well-known and widely-used service as soon as it signs up, which you can do with a Yahoo!, Google+, or Facebook account (although there is no small controversy about whether such integration is good for Flickr itself). Here’s a handy introduction to get you started from there:
What you really want to be on top of from the get-go are the naming of galleries and the creation and use of meaningful tags. In this case, best to leave control of these decisions to one or two staff members who can ensure some standardization in the account, even as you post images from numerous participants’ cameras from an event.
Like so much of the social-networking universe, your nonprofit or charity should be thinking about sharing a story. At a rally or summer festival, for example, create signage and hand out information at the registration/entrance encouraging people to post images of their experiences to their Flickr accounts, and to email those images to your organization, who will do the same. Then you can pick 2 or 200 of the best shots that tell the story of the day’s events. Share them on your account, and let those images tell your story in an emotive and engaging manner.