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The Unifying Power of

Social Technologies
Become a Force for Nature

Image: Earthflight with Sutton Avian Research Ctr (SARC) Oklahoma. Photo by R. Cook.
This presentation is by Betsey O’Hagan,
Consultant, and is shared under a Creative
Commons license,
Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike CC
BY-NC-SA which means you can share and
adapt materials with attribution, for
non-commercial purposes, and distribute
under share-alike licensing.

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COAC Goals
● Raise up the COAC Social Network.
● Share ideas and talk with each other,
compare successes and failures.
● Centralize communications.
● Collaborate on projects.
● Bring a unified voice to conservation
issues.
● Spread the word about birding and
conservation in Ohio.
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​AFFILIATES

COAC Social Network


1. American Birding Association
2. Akron University Field Station
3. American Avian Conservation & Research Institute
4. Birders of Miami University
5. Black Swamp Bird Observatory
CHAPTERS 6. City of Cleveland Office of Sustainability
7. Cleveland Metroparks - Natural Resources
1. Audubon Miami Valley Audubon Society 8. Cleveland Museum of Natural History
2. Audubon Society Greater Cleveland 9. Doan Brook Watershed Partnership
10. Geauga Parks District
3. Audubon Society Ohio-Cincinnati
11. Ivory-bill Connection
4. Blackbrook Audubon Society 12. Kirtland Bird Club​
5. Black River Audubon Society 13. Lake Erie Nature and Science Center
6. Canton Audubon Society 14. Mentor Marsh Nature Center
15. Ohio Conservation Federation
7. Columbus Audubon Society 16. Ohio Bird Conservation Initiative
8. Dayton Audubon Society 17. Ohio Natural Areas and Preserves Association
9. Great Lakes Audubon (ONAPA)
10. Greater Akron Audubon Society 18. Ohio Ornithological Society
19. Ohio Sea Grant College Program-The Ohio State
11. Tri-Moraine Audubon Society University
12. Western Cuyahoga Audubon Society 20. Ohio Young Birders Club
21. Ohio Wetlands Association (OWA)
22. Rust Belt Riders 4
23. Sierra Club Ohio
A Thriving COAC Social
Network...
1. A COMMON VISION AND A COMMON
GOAL
2. COMMITMENT TO WORK TOGETHER
3. MUTUAL RESPECT
4. STRONG RELATIONSHIPS AND TRUST
5. NO LEADERS BUT A GROUP EFFORT
AMONG EQUALS
6. ASSIGN ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
7. BE ACCOUNTABLE
8. BE FLEXIBLE AND COMFORTABLE WITH
AMBIGUITY
9. COMMUNICATE EFFECTIVELY
10. MANAGE CONFLICT

The Art of Collaboration: 10 Essential Skills for


Successful Music Entrepreneurs
“Mayors Map” by www.orgnet.com/ www.icareifyoulisten.com
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“Know the Net, Knit the Net”

~ Valdis Krebs, Founder, Orgnet.com


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1969
Founding Vision of the “Ohio Audubon Council”
● To coordinate the thoughts and programs of Audubon chapters and
affiliates in the State of Ohio,
● To speak in a common voice on important conservation issues,
● To act as a sounding board for various and common problems among
Audubon chapters and affiliates,
● In some cases, consolidate efforts in field activities,
● To act as a liaison with National Audubon Society, and
● To act as a center for the dissemination of information.

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2002
“Council of Ohio Audubon Chapters (COAC)”
● COAC is to “aid chapter development in strength, growth, and leadership
through dialogue and networking between the Chapters, Audubon Ohio,
and the National Audubon Society; and to provide an independent,
collective voice of Ohio chapters and affiliates in all Audubon affairs.”
● National Audubon representation
● At least two inter-chapter forums/meetings per year

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2006
“COAC Strategic Plan of 2006”
1. Updated mission, vision, values.
2. Summary of core strategies, goals & objectives:
a. Communicate and collaborate with Audubon Ohio and other entities.
b. Review proposals COAC receives to see if they are within our mission
to fulfill.
c. Work with chapters that want our help.

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2006
Audubon flourishes
in 60% of Ohio

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2006
Then languishes for the next 11 years: 2007, 2008,
2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016...
During these years the Internet began to take off. We saw an unprecedented growth of mobile
technologies and 18-44 year olds fastest growing groups on mobile. Monopolizing the attention of
18-44 year olds. That’s everyone.

And Audubon chapters like so many organizations, businesses, and government offices, were not on
the web or only in a limited capacity.

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2017
‘Perfect storm’
conditions as Audubon
activity declines 50% in
the State of Ohio.

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Backgrounder
● As web & marketing consultant to WCAS, I wanted to connect and share WCAS materials online
with other chapters but didn’t find much activity.
● With the support and oversight of the WCAS Board, I conducted first person interviews of Ohio
chapters spring & summer 2017.
● “Research showed in 2006, there were 19 Audubon chapters in Ohio that reached 60 percent
of the population, whereas by 2017, there was a 30 percent reach, due to the loss of five
chapters. I presented the results to WCAS Board members who, acting as an interim advisory
network in the summer of 2017, suggested bringing together the 14 active chapters to carry on
the COAC mission.
● We developed a preliminary network of contacts in the chapters, reached out to them, and
invited them to a planning meeting October 1, 2017 to find common ground and determine the
level of interest holding a more intensive workshop in 2018.
● Six chapters, including Columbus Audubon Society, Firelands Audubon Society, Audubon
Society of Greater Cleveland, Canton Audubon Society, Blackbrook Audubon Society, and
Western Cuyahoga Audubon Society, attended the planning meeting.” MINUTES OF COAC
MEETING FOR 10-01-2017 PDF 13
A Platform For COAC “Platforms deliver hosted services over the
Internet.” - Wikipedia

At the next meeting,


● Library
March 4, 2018, nine
chapters vote to fund the ● Operations

construction of an ● Collaboration
Internet platform to
● Publishing
connect all chapters in a
● Marketing
network.
● Ecommerce

MINUTES OF COAC MEETING FOR 03-04-2018 PDF 14


COAC Network Resources One Year Later
1. Administrator
2. Brand identity
3. Google for Nonprofits
4. Website www.counciloac.org
5. Service tools
6. Content marketing

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1. Administrator Skills Matrix
Strategist & Servant Leader -- oversee at a high level
informed by the collective, “close the triangle”, help set the pace.
“Network Weaver” -- entrepreneurial, talk with people,
research & recruit core members, affiliates, individuals, and reach out
to outliers.
Administrative -- assistant, office manager, coordinate
workshops and conference calls, conducts special fund-raising
campaign marketing.
Web & Data Manager -- information architect and data
manager, establishes brand and data protocols, manage multimedia,
develop platform web tools for connectivity, collaboration, scaling,
and manage technology license accounts and security.
Content Marketer -- finds innovative ideas for content design,
curate and publish creative digital media content, achieves #1 search 16
results, produce live-streaming events (TBA).
2. Brand Identity
● Branding Guidelines eBook

● Logos

● Fonts

● Color Palette

● Social Media Banners

● Black & White for Print

www.counciloac.org/media-resources 17
3. Google for Nonprofits
● Gmail

● Drive

● User accounts

● Google Photos

● YouTube

● Hangouts

● Google Analytics 18
4. Website
HOME

● NEWSLETTER SIGN UP
● MEMBERSHIP
● LEADERSHIP
● HISTORY
● RECORDS
● NEWS & STORIES
● CALENDAR
● WORKSHOPS
● QUARTERLY WORKSHOPS
● MEDIA RESOURCES
● LEGAL
● COMMUNITY GUIDELINES
● MULTIMEDIA RELEASE FORM​
● PRIVACY POLICY
● ​TERMS OF USE
● POSTING POLICY
● SITE MAP

www.counciloac.org/ 19
5. Service Tools
● FreeConferenceCall.com
● MailChimp.com
● SumoMe.com
● SurveyMonkey.com
● Flickr.com
● SoundCloud.com
● Scribd.com
● Disqus.com
● Bitly.com
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6. Content to Market
● COAC news & event announcements
● First person interviews & stories
● Chapter & affiliate histories
● Meeting minute notes
● Photography
● Videos
● Podcasts
● Educational resources
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Early Network Insights
Above average responsiveness to

● Feedback Forms - i.e., Brand, Registration, Presenters


● The COAC email list delivers communications to 150
members. The average COAC open rate is 43.2%,
higher than the industry hobby rate of 28.49%.
● Website 500 unique visitors & 1,000 pageviews weekly
● A growing presence on social media

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COAC Education
Calls and Meetings

● 18 COAC calls and 5 Quarterly Workshops


for a total of 23 events in 15 months.

● Engaged 14 of 15 Ohio chapter reps &


members, 20 affiliates, and 5 individuals.

● Engaged a total of 250 people.


○ WORKSHOPS www.counciloac.org/workshops.html
○ RECORDS www.counciloac.org/records.html
○ CALENDAR www.counciloac.org/calendar.html
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COAC Next Steps
1. Fund the COAC Platform Yrs 2 & 3.
2. Grow the COAC Social Network.
3. Schedule workshop & meeting hosts to 2023.
4. Launch central communications schedule.
5. Broadcast a unified COAC voice to
conservation issues.
6. Scale collaborative projects.
7. Raise funds through special events.
8. Spread the word about birding and
conservation in Ohio.
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Thank you!

Betsey O’Hagan, Consultant

Platforms, Digital Strategy,


Multimedia Producer, Social
Network Developer
“The Unifying Power
of Social
Email: betseymerkel@gmail.com

Technologies” Phone: 216-246-2447

Images: Mary Anne Romito, Tom


Become a Force for Nature Fishburn, R. Cook

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