Estimated reading time: 2 minutes, 48 seconds

periscopeNot another social media tool! Doesn’t it seem like the moment your organization has mastered one social media platform another social media site pops up.



While it isn’t advisable for your organization to jump on every social media bandwagon, it is a good idea familiarize yourself with new tools. That way you can make an informed decision about whether it is right for your organization. Social media sites like Twitter and Facebook, remain the most popular sites, but it can feel like they offer a limited way to engage your donor base. Sure, you can write carefully crafted posts that get you likes, comments & shares, but the even if you embed videos these sites can feel a bit static.

It doesn’t help if you’re scheduling your posts ahead of time, not that there is anything wrong with that, it certainly is a time saver, but it can contribute your site feeling a bit scripted. How about livening things up with a bit of live streaming? Okay, so live streaming with all its unscriptedness, can be a bit intimidating. That’s why you should start small. A great way to dip your toe into live streaming, that doesn’t require more than you phone and a willing partner is Periscope.

Periscope is owned by Twitter, which means if you already have a Twitter account you already have a built in Periscope audience. To begin you download the Periscope app (available for Android and iPhone). Not only does the app let you do a live broadcast, but there is a chat function that lets you interact with your audience. Use it to answer questions during your broadcast or a for a specific Q & A session after an interview. You can also turn off the comments.

As it is social media, you get hearts from your followers to let you know that they like your broadcast.  Besides the hearts you can  get other analytics from the app such as overall views and the retention rate. Want to do a live stream for an exclusive audience? You can lock your periscope and share it with a select group of people.

Things to consider when you’re preparing a Periscope. First, you really do need two people to do a Periscope, one person is the on air talent and they other is filming. If you are Periscoping an event, you can also use the other person to live tweet and Instagram it. Plus, they read you the questions for a question and answer session.

The app will send out a notification that you are doing a Periscope, but it is a good idea for you to have built up some interest in the Periscope prior to the event. You can also create your own hashtag for the event. Remember to be aware of your location when filming, you don’t want extremes that is; too dark/bright or too loud.

Finally, embrace the live nature of a Periscope. While other social media sites show a carefully curated version of your organization, Periscope is your opportunity to show a little levity. You can also use it to see your organization in action. The question and answer session can bring you closer to your donors and really get them invested in your organization.  
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