Tag: Strategic Planning

Don’t Neglect Your Social Media When You’re on Vacation!

By Giselle Aguiar, AZ Social Media Wiz

Beach vacation? Don't forget to schedule your social media!Whether you’re heading for the beach, the slopes or over the river and through the woods to grandmother’s house, the last thing you want to think about is your social media and marketing. But…..

Social media doesn’t stop just because you’re on vacation!

Ski vacation? Schedule your social media in advance!If you don’t keep being social, blogging and posting, you’ll risk losing followers — the followers that it took so long to get! Not everyone goes on vacation. Many people use this down-time to catch up with their to-do list, do research or get organized.

Here are a few steps to take before you hang up the “gone fishing” sign:

  1. Plan ahead – At the end of every month, you need to review site statistics and analytics, review your marketing plan and adjust and plan for the next month accordingly. If you know you’re going to be away, take that into consideration and plan for it! Related: The Power of a Good Marketing Plan
  2. Schedule posts – use free tools, Twitterfeed, HootSuite and TweetDeck to schedule posts to go automatically while you’re away. Related: What’s the Best Time to Tweet? ; Video: How to Use SocialBro & HootSuite to Schedule Posts & Tweets in Bulk
  3. Schedule blog posts – make time before you leave to write a few blog posts and schedule them to post in the future. Use that wait-time at the airport to write quick blog articles. Related: WordPress Tools
  4. Get the mobile apps – all the networks are available for iOS and Android – not all are available for Windows phones. Most of the tools are also available for mobile: Feedly, HootSuite and even WordPress.
  5. Post about your trip – you’re human, you connect with humans – humans have fun on vacation – have fun with social!

If you plan ahead, you’ll be able to relax and worry, if people will think you fell of the face of the earth – even if you want to actually do that.

About the Author:

Giselle Aguiar, AZ Social Media WizGiselle Aguiar, founder of AZ Social Media Wiz is a social media, inbound and content marketing strategist & trainer helping small to mid-sized business owners learn how to leverage the power of social media marketing, increase traffic to their websites, generate leads, increase brand awareness and establish themselves as experts in their fields. As with anything in business, using the right tools in the right way and at the right time are critical parts to your success. Learn from someone who’s known the Internet since it’s infancy. Official Social Media, Newsletter and Blog Manager for Greater Phoenix SCORE and Adjunct Faculty at Phoenix College. Social media training – 1-on-1 or for groups. WordPress sites and blogs. http://azsocialmediawiz.com 602-738-1700. You can connect with Giselle online at LinkedIn or on Google+.


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Nonprofits Have Two Missions—Not Just One

By Rod Houston, Certified SCORE Mentor

Non-profitsOften nonprofits start-up and run on the energy that comes from the passion that is the original reason the organization was formed.  Founders put their heart and soul and sometimes personal resources to making the effort work.  And often they have great success —for a while.

However some unexpected event always seems to occur that puts the organization’s existence at risk—government funding gets cut, the economy takes a downturn, key donors or people leave, etc.  Unfortunately, it is only then that they realize that there are really two missions that the organization has—the passionate mission and the business mission.

Passionate Mission—this is why the organization was founded and is the moral compass for the organization.  It must never be compromised and should drive the organization’s direction.

Business Mission—the organization is a business and must be operated like one.  This will ensure long-term sustainability.  A nonprofit cannot succeed long term without being successful with both missions.  Some elements of the business mission are:

  • Think strategic—the board’s responsibility is to do the strategic planning for the organization, and operational oversight only.  The Strategic Plan is the board’s plan with strong input from the Executive Director, and the Operating Plan is the Executive Director’s plan with strong input from the board.  Too often, board of directors meetings are taken up “counting pencils” rather than doing operational oversight, looking only at significant deviations from the Operational Plan by exception.
  • Think like a for-profit business and get orders—the nonprofit’s customers are its donors.  They give money expecting that specific results will be obtained, the same as buying a product or service in the for-profit world, so it is important to understand what they are buying, measure it, and report the successes.
  • Think efficient, effective operations—your donors demand it.  They are giving money to your cause that was not easy to come by and you owe it to them.  Too often, with a lot of volunteerism being involved, people get involved with paths that don’t contribute significantly to the mission, and become a distraction.  Good planning makes sure everyone is on the same track.

People involved with nonprofits must recognize that there are always two missions—a  passionate mission and a business mission, and that you must succeed at both to be effective over the long term.

More information on this and other aspects of running a nonprofit successfully, is available at the seminar “Making Your Nonprofit Work”, presented by Greater Phoenix Score, on Sept 16, from 6:00-9:00 PM.

About the Author:

Rod Houston, SCORE mentorRod has been a SCORE Mentor since 2004.  During his extensive 40 year career, Rod held various executive positions in Sales and marketing at General Electric Industrial Automation and Power Generation units and other energy and environmental companies. Rod has mentored more than 400 small businesses and 100 nonprofits as a member of SCORE and the Executive Service Corps. He has been a board member of seven Not for Profit organizations.


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Setting Strategic Business Goals

By Roger Robinson, PhD, Certified Score Mentor

Setting strategic goals helps you know where you are going. As Joseph Bronkowski noted in The Ascent of Man, one of the major differences between mankind and other forms of life is our ability to think in terms of the future consequences of present acts. Thinking in terms of future consequences is another way of saying goal setting, an end toward which effort is directed (Webster’s). This is a dominant attribute of human behavior, whether we are acting in groups or individually. In the business world we call this process business planning. It can be as simple as setting a destination when entering a car or as complicated developing a strategic plan. The critical elements of planning, and specifically to strategic business planning, include the creation of goals, of what the organization really wants to accomplish and how it will be accomplished. The prime task of strategic business planning is thinking through the overall mission of the organization:

“…that is, of asking the question, what is our business? This leads to the setting of objectives, the development of strategies, and the making of today’s decisions for tomorrow’s results.” (Peter Drucker)

Thus strategic business planning is the determination of where an organization is going over the next 3 to 5 years and how it’s going to get there.
Goals and the process of goal are invaluable, they motivate. Goal setting theory of motivation supports the assumption that behavior that leads to performance is a function of conscious goals and intentions. For this to occur there must be:

  • Involvement in the goal setting process
  • Acceptance of the goal as realistic, attainable, meaningful
  • Commitment to the attainment of the goal
  • Appropriate intrinsic and extrinsic

Once this has occurred a goal becomes an acquired motive – it has drive strength, the ability to move the individual and/or the organization to its accomplishment.

About the Author:

Roger_RobinsonRoger Robinson, PhD has been a SCORE mentor for over 16 years. His specialties include non-profits, business planning, specifically in restaurants and hospitality, recreational and arts
and Entertainment verticals. Read more about Roger here.

Click here to schedule a free mentoring session with Roger or another SCORE mentor.


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