Concerned About Online Donor Data Security? Try a Private Social Network
Many charities make use of the free social-networking tools such as Facebook, and that’s a good thing. It’s important to have a presence there. After all, close to 10 percent of the world’s population is registered, probably including most of your donors. But rather than using it as your main way for engaging them online, have you thought about offering your donors a safer way to engage within the trusted confines of your website on a private social network? A private social network offers all of the functionality of a Facebook or LinkedIn group, but you get to control your brand. It’s an ad-free zone (unless you want to offer “appropriate advertising content” of your own), and no one’s collecting information about your donors for future, unspecified use.
A private social network needs to be hosted and supported but doesn’t get the benefit of advertising income. Therefore, it costs a little to provide one. But providing your own social-networking experience is a powerful statement, and some private social networks have the added benefit of being able to link to your CRM/donor database system, too. Take a look at advsol.com/gosocial to see how some nonprofits are using private social networks.
Robin Fisk is a senior charity technology specialist at Alexandria, Va.-based nonprofit software provider Advanced Solutions International (ASI).