SEO and Social Media for Non-Profits

seo and social media for non-profits

This year, I’ve been fortunate to be involved with a non-profit organization here in Atlanta, called Vision Rehabilitation Services of Georgia.  My wife is a member of their staff and I have volunteered to help with promote their upcoming fundraising event via SEO and Social Media.  It’s been a great learning experience and I am proud of the results that have been produced so far.

Screen shot from Google Analytics showing improvment

Thankfully, my wife is often my sounding board and she will be the first person to remind me I am talking over people’s heads.  I love technology and all things internet related. Once I get excited about something, I tend to take off or (incorrectly) assume everyone knows what I’m talking about.

consider your audience

Alas, such is not the case.  The good people at VRS are not technical in nature and I’ve done everything from explaining what Twitter is to how to edit the title of a page in HTML.  They certainly haven’t had much exposure to SEO and Social Media. This, I have found, is great since it helps me stay grounded, slow down, take a breath, and really make a difference in helping achieve results.


I have found that I learn best when I have a goal in hand and the can put whatever I’m doing to practice.  This is how I learn and improve.


I’m no stranger to Social Media and I consider myself more of a rabid enthusiast as opposed to an expert. I was already somewhat familiar with SEO and the over all concepts, but putting it all together for a good cause really helped me grow and be effective.


I’ve bought books, signed up for mailing lists, practiced and experimented.

Rinse, Lather, Repeat for success!

(If you read Malcolm Gladwell’s book, Outliers, you know about opportunity and experience so I think that’s very apropos in this case.)

Malcolm Gladwell's book, Outliers

finishing touches

I’ve been using an example to illustrate how I feel. The example I’ve been using is that the Internet is a car; I know how to work on the engine, transmission and brakes, and with what I’m learning now I’m learning how to put on the custom, hand-painted pin striping.

I’m not going to go into specifically into SEO or Social Media tips for non-profits because that stuff is already plastered all over the web and can be found in books, but I have really enjoyed my experience and am glad I’m helping a great cause.


But is has become clear to me that you have to use both, or that is to say, you should use bothThe sum is greater than the parts and with the various tools available, you can see the results, (whether positive or negative) pretty quickly.


I guess the one piece of advice I can give, is to have a goal.  Whether it is something like “getting people to sign up for the fundraiser,” or “move up in search engine results,” or simply create awareness, you got to have identified what you are trying to do.   SEO and Social Media just for the heck of it, will not work.


Oh, and if you are interested in helping our cause and seeing how SEO and Social Media can help a non-profit, check out the Spooktacular Chase, 5k Race in Symrna GA.


I’d love to hear any suggestions or questions you have.





my favorite music videos

I’ve been wanting to do this for a while. Since there is Youtube and Google Video, it’s easy to find your favorite music videos. Granted, the quality isn’t always perfect, but I rarely watch videos on MTV or the other music video channels. So, that’s where I get my fix. There are several videos that I would consider to be my favorites and some that I would say were very influential in my life. I should also clarify that while these are songs I really really like, this list is about my favorite music videos. Without futher ado, here’s my list of Top Videos…

Once in a Lifetime by Talking Heads.
I saw this video one night when I was spending the night at my Grandma’s house. My grandma would let me stay up late and I remember sleeping on a cot in the living room and it was a Friday night. SCTV was on, and this video was featured on the show.

Around this time, I bought my first LP… it was Devo, New Traditionalists. What, you want to know what my first cassette was? Sure, it was the self titled album by The Clash.

Rubber Biscuit by The Blues Brothers.
Okay, so this video isn’t that great, but I got lots of questions about “What’s with your tag line?” Well, I got it from this song.

You got to understand that I lived in Chicago when the first Blues Brother movie was made. As goofy as this song is, it will always hold a special place in my heart.

Everything is Everything by Lauryn Hill.
Damn, she’s got a voice. My wife was really into her and when I saw this video, I was floored.

I like the song and I like the who turntable motif. It’s a great video and song.

The Talking Heads – Road To Nowhere

I love this video.  I remember when True Stories came out.  It was a classic in my opinion and this video I thought really showed off some of the creative genius they had.

Great visuals.

They Wiseguys – Start the Commotion

I haven’t been able to find a lot of info on the Wiseguys, (apparently, there is German band with the same name and they overshadow these Wiseguys).  But I love this video with the loops (both audio and video).  It’s one of those songs that just sticks with you.  I sure wish I could find a better version.

Johnny Cash – Hurt

I don’t care who you are and what you’re made of.  If this doesn’t tug at the ol’ heart strings, then you are probably a cold bastard.  The first time I saw this video, I had a household of contractors, (we had just moved into our new house).  Everything came to a stand still and when the video was over, we were all teary eyed… “Uh, I musta got sumthin’ in my eye…”

I hope I go out like Johnny Cash.

Smog (Bill Callahan) – Rock Bottom Riser
I’m a recent new listener to Smog. I love it, or I should say him What I like about this video is the calligraphy-like draws that illustrate the song. I’ve always wondered how they did things, and I think this video is amazing. Much in the same way I’ve always enjoyed the opening to the old Pink Panther movies.

Cornershop – Brimful of Asha
I don’t remember where I saw this first, but I loved it the first time I saw it. In the same vein as “How’d they do that…” this video is cool. The song is good, too. I picked up the CD somewhere and there are a lot of good songs on it. Besides, Tjinder is a cool name, right?

Adidas – Hello Tomorrow
This really isn’t a music video, but rather a commercial. When I first saw this, I was about to watch the Simpsons with my son and after it was over, we just looked at each other with out jaws hanging open. We must have watched it 20 times on the TiVo. This video is so interesting, it got all sorts of press in the Ad journals:

And that girl singing is Karen O from the “Yeah-Yeah-Yeah’s”.

Einstürzende Neubauten – Stella Maris
Sure, I like the song, but this video is beautifully shot and composed. The subtitles also lend to the overall experience and tell a engaging story.

I would also like a hat like that.


I’ll be the first to admit that I am not up all the music videos these days.  But much of the music that is churned and pushed out is just crap.  The videos I’ve posted here are significant to me in that they were either the first time I was exposed to the music or I was a little kid and they made a profound impact on me.

There is a house built out of stone
Wooden floors, walls and window sills
Tables and chairs worn by all of the dust
This is a place where I don’t feel alone
This is a place where i feel at home

And I built a home
For you
For me

Until it disappeared
From me
From you
And now, it’s time to leave and turn to dust


Out in the garden where we planted the seeds
There is a tree as old as me
Branches were sewn by the color of green
Ground had arose and passed it’s knees

By the cracks of the skin I climbed to the top
I climbed the tree to see the world
When the gusts came around to blow me down
I held on as tightly as you held onto me
I held on as tightly as you held onto me

And I built a home
For you
For me

Until it disappeared
From me
From you

And now, it’s time to leave and turn to dust

– The Cinematic Orchestra – To Build a Home

Happy New Year!

Hey Folks! I hope you all had as nice as a New Years Eve as our family did.  It was really nice and we spent some good times with our neighbors and met a lot of nice people.  The kids had fun and even though I slept in, I feel pretty good.

Chinese TV

Today, I am going to finish helping my Chinese mother-in-law set up a Medialounge device on her TV.  You see, she bought this rather cool set top box that was a wireless media extender but was pre-programmed to go out and get Chinese content on her TV.  She would like to watch this on her TV while she did her treadmill, Lose Weight Exercise bike, etc.  She doesn’t want to watch it on her computer monitor.

We got it set up and I was pretty impressed.  I can’t read Chinese but it did look like it was going to be great.  What she found out was, they get you hooked and then literally nickel and dime you to death.  The first shows are free, then $.10, then $.50, and so on.  She sent it back, but wished we could do something else.

D-link DPG-1200

We had a family trip to our local Fry’s and we were trying to figure out how to get the Chinese content off her PC onto her TV.   Sure, Fry’s had a ton of the wireless media players, but they were expensive.  They had two open boxes for the D-Link DPG-1200.  I scanned the barcode with my Google G1 and found that the price was right but had a really hard time finding any reviews.

I brought it home to set it up and was impressed.   Now this is no original XBOX with XBMC on it, but it would do fine for our needs.

Wireless Woes

What I didn’t plan on was that her PC is hooked up wireless as well as the DPG-1200.  The DPG-1200 could get content from the Internet just fine, but watching content off of her PC sucked bad.  I’m guessing it had to do with both devices being connected to the LAN wirelessly.

So the plan is when we go over there, will run Cat5 cable through the walls.  This is always a slippery slope.

My thoughts on the Dlink DPG-1200

Honestly, I like DPG-1200, but I will admit the set up was very complex.  I don’t think the less tech savvy crowd would have hung with it as much as I did.   Additionally, there is almost zero documentation on what to expect with the device.  Someone who never had a device like this would be like, “Okay, now what?”

I can’t even tell if it supports uPNP, but that’s just me.  For my mother-in-law, I think she’ll be happy but if she didn’t have me around to help, I think she would have disappointed and frustrated.

I’ll keep you posted on how it goes today.

wii controller and Mac Book

First, let me apologize for not coming up with a more catchy title for this post. I’ve been overwhelmed by the information I’ve found over this weekend.  That’s no exaggeration.  Furthermore, this is all new to me so I am not up on the digitial music vernacular so it’s like learning a new language.

First, if you saw my Tweets, you would have seen how excited I was that caught wind that the Wii controllers have Bluetooth in them.  I honestly had no idea.  Additionally, there’s been a ton of super smart, talented people out there writing crazy apps (for Win, Linux, and Mac) to do all sorts of crazy things.

How this started was that I got some great comments from Andy on Bob on my Theremin post a couple of days ago.  Somehow, I got down the rabbit hole looking for ways to make a Theremin-sort-of-thing on my Mac using the Wii controllers.

I found a great amount of great resources and I got pretty darn close.  But I had to learn how to use GarageBand, play around with the Mac MIDI drivers, and put them all together and make ’em play nice.  If I understood all the terminology, this would be easier, I think.

I was playing “drums” and guitar with my Wii controller, Nunchuck, and Garageband.  That was pretty cool, I must say.  I read about WiiJ’s and other looping sort of things.  I was so excited that I jumped head first into it, trying to get it all to work.  And that’s my problem.  I got to the point where it just wasn’t making sense any more, (seriously, I’ve felt like this trying to learn a new language).

The good news, I think I got all the pieces I need and I learned a ton about the potential for the Wii remote and digital music making, not just a Theremin.   I need to digest it and put together in a way that makes sense.  This is some pretty slick stuff.

Oh, did I mention that a lot of this isn’t just for the Mac?

Definitely more to come!

Wii Loop Machine Demo from The Amazing Rolo on Vimeo.