It's my pleasure to introduce you to Clover Frederick. Clover is a marketing consultant, speaker, and blogger specializing in nonprofits. As director and founder of nonprofit marketing network in Lincoln, Neb., she helps connect nonprofits with the marketing professionals they need. She's also the American Marketing Association Lincoln 2011 Marketer of the Year. When she told me she'd given a seminar on "slacktivism," I asked her what that was. This is her answer! You can follow her on Twitter @cloverfrederick.


Clover Frederickby Clover Frederick

Gen Y has a reputation for being lazy but don’t try to claim the Slacker label. That belongs firmly with my Generation X. Of course, the Baby Boomers never went through a lazy phase, did you, former hippies?

Truth is, most of America’s living generations went through a life stage where sloppy styles told the world that we didn’t care what “the man” had to say. Whether it was the hippies’ long hair, us Gen Xers and our flannel shirts or Gen Y’s …well, whatever those crazy kids are now wearing …. we all went through a phase.

While we all cringed at the return of the bell bottoms, we must give hippies credit. They made signs, staged protests and sometimes physically fought for the causes they believed in.

Today, we have Twitter and Facebook. We don’t need to get out a marker and posterboard. We don’t have to take a day off from work to sit on the Capitol steps. We simply cut and paste to tell the world that we hate cancer, love our armed forces or despise the current state of politics. A classic case of Slacktivism: the search for warm fuzzy feelings of helping a cause without actually having to do anything to make change.

This does about as much good as yelling at the referee on TV during a football game.

As a marketer of nonprofits, I want my next status update to say:

“Whatever you do, don’t copy and paste this into your status. Instead, open your wallet and write a check to your favorite charity. Get out your calendar and find a day to volunteer for a cause you have passion for. Pick up your phone, dial the local nonprofit of your choice and volunteer your skills and talents. Quit copying and pasting and start DOING something.”

As a nonprofit, there is something you can do about all this

  1. Be INVOLVED in social media

    Be active in talking with your supporters.

  2. Have the digital basics

    Have a decent website that you can update yourself with online giving capabilities.

  3. Identify key influencers

    Figure out who is likely to share your posts or talk about you on social media.

  4. Ask your followers to get more involved

    If someone is willing to share information about your organization, they are likely willing to share their time, talent or treasure. You just have to ask.

Do you have more ideas? Share them here!

The author at the height of her “slacker” days (circa 1994). Even then, she used her college newspaper as a platform for change.

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