World Vision on “YOU are the Fortress”

Keith Don is Digital Channels Manager at World Vision Australia. In response to my blog post on “YOU are the Fortress”, Keith left this awesome response which I thought I would share below:

Hi Shawn,

What you’ve said is exactly right – big orgs like us are fortresses. What Wendy has said is the reality but ultimately its not up to the ‘free agents’ to make organisations know who you are, its up to the organisations to be listening and understanding the social media landscape to know who are the voices that can help them deliver their message.

When it comes to traditional media usually we don’t and can’t dictate to newspapers and tv networks how to present our content yet we facilitate access. In the new social media environment NGOs often take a DIY approach. Generally speaking this will only get you so far. Distribution is key, and that ony comes from partnering with strong, influential voices on issues aligned to your organisation.

Another aspect is given more people are spending more time online than on other media forms, where are your ambassadors going to come from?

The world has changed – just because the big NGOs are big doesn’t mean that they can control the media landscape. They couldn’t before and they can’t now. The challenge for organisations like ours is to be smart and use our size to engage new media to bring our work to a new audience that can easily be drawn to smaller, more niche, less transparent organisations that have simply cracked the SM puzzle.

It can be done, I just don’t think anyone has really cracked it yet. The first one that does will lead the way – hopefully its us! ;-)

Keith Don
World Vision Australia

World Vision is definitely one of the charities I am trying to team up with. Whether it’s forward thinking people like Wendy Harman at the Red Cross or World Vision guys like Keith Don – there is no shortage of forward thinking people in non-profits. Hopefully, the fortress can be broke from within.

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