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Digital Strategy: Strengthen Your Online Presence & Advance Your Mission

Wayne Atwood
Audio Only


The only constant in the world of technology is change. It’s sometimes hard to know how to effectively harness the power of the online world to advance your mission. In this seminar we will look at simple, low-cost ways that you can strengthen your online presence. This seminar will greatly benefit both business people and ministries. 


Wayne Atwood

President of Better Living (Mieux Vivre)




  • August 6, 2015
    10:45 AM
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Father in heaven we thank you so much for the privilege of being able to be together today. We thank you for media that you've given to us we thank you for the Internet that you've given and Lord. We just pray that you would help us today to learn how to use it to spread the gospel how to use it to help others and to encourage and bless them. We thank you and we pray that you would guide the whole convention in everything that's done in Jesus' name amen. OK so how many of you are from ministries and how many of you are from businesses that will start with ministries how many of you represent ministries here today. OK And how many of you represent businesses like for profit. OK Very good. We are so glad that both of you are here because the Internet is so so important in both of these categories. It's important for us to be able to get our message out there and it's important for us also to be able to see how we can use the Internet in order to you know we can from a business respect that we can spend. So so so much money on web development and Internet and things like that as well and its members are people that believe and embrace the philosophy of A.S.I. we want to be able to use our businesses to be able to reach out and be tools to reach out to others. And so I think that it's just so important for us to know how we can use the resources now. You know in a seminar it's so difficult to be able to condense things that we could say about the Internet and online the world of websites and online and development and all this because it's just so huge and beyond that. Another big child. Just that it's changing so fast that there is no way that anybody can keep up with it. I mean you could spend just all day every day just trying to follow what's happening and you still would only have a little tip of what's happening. I mean it's just so huge. And you know I'm not the youngest guy out there either. I'm not the oldest either but already in our ministry I'm from better living ministry which is based out of Quebec Canada. And we we do media training which involves like training young people how to do video production and then like audio radio television programming as well as web site development and how to. Everything is in the context of how to use it in ministries so we we train young people for this and it's just amazing to see you know what the young people when they come in and I mean they know things that I don't know even though I've been working in media and and website development and things for you know a while now but there's still it's just like it's incredible. And so I think that what's really important for us is to really see how we can reach our goals and how we can really be focused on how we can use the Internet for God's glory. I mean so much time let's face it I mean so much time is wasted online so much time is wasted in doing things that probably aren't that important and not even to talk about all of the very destructive things as well that are available on the engine as well. So it's you know it's something that we we have to really be careful with it's something that is very important for us to learn how to manage and learn also how to be able to really harness so that we can use it for God to work and that's just a real burden that I have is to do everything that we can to use the tools that God has given us to be able to spread the gospel. And you know. Part of that is to be able to find efficient ways part of that is to be able to find cost effective ways especially for a ministry but I would say not only for ministry for business as well because if we're running a business and we want to focus our resources financial resources and others into you know being able to spread the Gospel then we're going to want to be able to take advantage of a cost effective ways as well to be able to harness the Internet. So we're going to look at a lot of different ways simple ways. And we're also going to take time for the for for you to share ways that you might have already used so the can really be a networking time as well because I don't have all the answers. You might have some that I've never even heard of and so that we can also learn together by dedicating a little bit of time for that in our presentation too. So for those I just came I'm delighted that each of you are here and we're going to get right into the topic. We've been are going through we've been reading for the last few months of the publishing ministry by Ellen White. It's a it's a book that's really inspiring because you know in her day of course the Internet didn't exist and yet we see that the book you know the printed page was the way that we could use to be able to reach out to people and to be able to spread the word because a person talking can only talk to so many people at one time but add that multiply then as the books are distributed and she talks a lot about call Porter thin and just what a wonderful thing it is. And she is just talking about here that the publication sent forth from friends you know others are to prepare people to meet God. So these are these messages that are out there are prepared so that people can meet God People can be ready for Christ's return. And I don't know about you but for me I've been just so impressed. And the events leading up to. Like the G C session and the emphasis on prayer and all of that have just so much convicted me even deeper that we are at the end of time and there's not a lot of time left and we need to be serious about what we can do to spread the gospel. And so we see here that they spread through publications were to spread the word and that we can see that we we can teach with a certain sound we can have a certainty by spreading the word to those around and of course that can be other forms of media as well like you can be web sites or a video and so on and we see here that this same message is to be given in our printing houses or through any other form of media to the world. Today the message of John the Baptist repent it's time for the Lord to come and of course we know also that this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world there is something that's very interesting about internet and that is that we get like these viral videos or these these things that suddenly become like it's just like a wave just sweeping over the Internet. And I believe that God can use these sorts of things as well to be able to get the message out and we need to pray for the Holy Spirit to be used in order to do just that. So today we're going to be looking at how we can effectively power harness the power of the online world to advance our mission and we're going to talk about a few things that can help that is as well as some very practical tips because I think this seminar is a lot more practical than it is theory because that's kind of what will help to guide us and help to know what we can do now. So let's kind of jump into some of this. How many of you have the website. OK for your business organization ministry. These days I think pretty much everybody has a website. It's something that's very very important. But there's a lot of factors to consider that are important. One of them being especially if if we're trying to reach with the world with our message is that it's very important for us right on our Web site very prominently to have a mission statement or it may be in the business world it can be like about us it doesn't have to be too much of if it's not like a charity or a ministry then we can use other methods as well. We can use about a little bit less of sounds a little bit less non-profit but it needs to be concise and precise. It needs to be something that not too long because anybody online today is in a big hurry. Unfortunately it's part of our society. I wish it weren't and I wish I wasn't in such a hurry all the time either. But it does seem like it is a plague in our society today and so it needs to be concise and we need to be able to understand what the mission is all about or what our purpose is rather quickly. Now it's also very important for the look and feel of our website to match that mission so what I would like to suggest is that the mission is like the central theme of what your website is so it should be very easy to find it doesn't mean it's on your home page necessarily but it should be very very easy to find. And what your website looks like should agree with that as well. And so if you're talking about something that serious you're not going to want to have colors that are you know super bright and don't sound serious if you're you know depending on what you're looking at you want to have something that agrees. And then another thing that I think. Often challenging for ministries and perhaps businesses as well that we have to find what makes us unique as an organization and a lot of times or ministries are doing similar things. So it's a challenge sometimes to find out what makes us unique but it is important I think that both sides are extremely important how we can learn to collaborate together with the with Sister ministries or with businesses in the business world we think of them as competitors but if we can find out ways that we can collaborate especially in the ministry Well I really have a burden for us to get rid of this mindset of competition and unfortunately I would say it's probably more present in the media world than it is in other areas of ministry. And so it's very unfortunate but for some reason this kind of this competitive feeling that that comes up sometimes then when we tend to sometimes not collaborate I think of much as we could and I don't mean that in any critical way I just I'm saying I have a burden for us to see what we can do in order to collaborate more so we want to see what's making us unique but we also want to see how we can collaborate with others. Now we're going to talk about some very practical things here and I've just put kind of some keywords here and you're welcome to take them down. If you google any of these words you'll get all the information you want to know. And so I'm not going to give you all that but I'm just going to try to present some of the things that are important. So basically what we're talking about Web site and development and how to get your message out there. And so today we're going to look at two different categories. OK So the first category is right here and it's online Web site solutions. These are probably the easiest to use. Or as somebody that doesn't know anything about web sites to be able to design their own Web site. So there's pros and there's cons and we'll talk about them a little bit. But basically any of these solutions they're they're online they're not free these solutions are not free I'm going to be showing you some free solutions later. They usually run between five twenty maybe thirty dollars a month depending on which solution and which plan there's different plans that are available. But basically what you do is you manage everything directly online and you choose it's all based on like templates and so on that you can choose and some of them are more limited than others and so one of the disadvantages of that is that if you choose a template then you're going to look like other Web sites out there. That's an important thing to be aware of in your decision making process so if you choose a template you just rest assured you're not the only one that in that template. And if you choose a really popular one there's you know there is there are others out there that are using that as well and so if you really want to create a very clear identity you might want to consider going with something that's more customized. And a lot of these online solutions don't offer like as much customization as some of the open source solutions that we'll talk about pretty soon. But the advantages of this is that it's very very easy system really doesn't have any kind of web knowledge at all. If you can type up a Microsoft Word document then it's a little bit of a learning curve but you can figure it out. There's a lot of good tutorials as well video tutorials that can help you to know how to create a website. Now we're going to talk about some of the factors of what's really important to consider is where the details are not right now because we're just talking about the different options the platforms and of course this is not by any means an exhaustive list. You can go. Will search and find a lot lot more but these are some of the ones that are pretty popular and fairly easy to use I know people that are using these different solutions although for myself it's not what I would recommend because of the fact that I like to have more control over what I want to be able to do on it and and we're going to talk about that. But the big big plus here is that if you don't know anything about web sites or development and your website it's pretty simple I need to say that if it's pretty simple not too complicated. It's a good place to start. And the other advantage is that you don't have to think about hosting or anything like that. OK so what that means is that you pay for the service and with the service you get both the hosting so the place where your web site is published. Maybe another way of saying it and and you get the service as well to how you can manage it. And so everything's all in one end so it makes it a little bit simpler from that perspective. Now we're going to talk about another category of platforms and then we're going to go more into detail about different things that are important to know. And I'll just say that it's kind of challenging also to present this kind of seminar because of the fact that people are all different levels. So it's really hard to kind of know where to get in the middle so it's you know it's not too boring for those that maybe don't get into all the tech detail and then it's not too simple for those that want a little more. So I'm kind of walking a tight rope that's not really easy but as we get into some of the questions and answers hopefully we'll be able to address more specific things. Now this this just blows me away here and Word Press gets a lot of bad rap but a lot of good stuff as well. Wordpress is nobody can refute the fact that it is the most popular platform out there period. And I mean here's And this is a six that there is seventy four. Our point six million sites that depend on Word Press and twenty two percent of registered domains in the U.S. run Word Press I mean that's just huge huge huge huge huge for one platform. So you know it's a lot of the criticism that Word Press gets is has to do with two areas one is that it's criticize because of security and the other is that it's criticized because developers don't like it too much. OK so those that are developing plugins and so on they find that it's not a very friendly platform although it doesn't stop developers because there's more developers for Wordpress and there is for any other platform out there but they don't it's not very developer friendly. However there are a couple of other options as well and now I should probably explain what open source is because I'm not sure that everybody knows what it is. Maybe let me ask for a show of hands now don't be a Bears if you don't know but just to get for me to get kind of a feel how many of you know what open source means. OK good so that gives me a very good idea so I'll take just a little bit of time to explain it. You know the world is connected today isn't it. You know through Facebook Unfortunately we won't go into whether we're really connected or not or whether we're really social or not because that's not the that's not the topic of today's seminar but we are connected I mean in the in the sense that you know we have I don't know how many people at our fingertips reading time that we can just send a message to and so on. So so we're very connected and so open source is basically what it is is it. It's communities that joined was based on a platform like I would say that open source is kind of the equivalent of the nonprofit in the organizational world like a nonprofit versus for profit open source is kind of like. And many of them are now. On profit organizations well like how many of you have ever heard of Firefox. It's a browser so Firefox is a non-profit organization and they fund their development through donations and I'm not sure all the different methods that they use but it is a non-profit organization and so open source basically means that you give everybody has access to the way this platform is built. And so as the community grows and they see those they have access to the way it's all built and they can add things to it. And so basically what it is the community of people that are working together they're developing for the open source platform is like it. We could say the kind of volunteering for it but a lot of times they're hired to do it. But the platform is not paying them to do it and then they can everybody can share what they call plug ins. And in my opinion the reason that I recommend Wordpress is being the best platform if you're on a bus. If you're ready for something that's more complicated than just the self hosted that you're doing yourself. I recommend Wordpress because of the fact that it has thousands and thousands of plugins available from its community it has more plugins available than any other content management software out there. And so for that reason you can make it do anything you want to do so it's not so much that Wordpress itself is so great although it does a lot but it's because it's so adaptable because the community that so forth it is so huge and so that really makes it be something that doesn't work for everybody so I mean I can't stand here and say well this is definitely your solution but I found that for a lot of ministries It is a very good solution because of the adaptability and other thing that I should. Say because of course cost is always important and that's what we say we're going to look at is cost effective ways to develop our online Web site and so on is that these platforms are completely free. OK there's no cost whatsoever for open source software it's its license under oath. If it's licensed under open source you cannot sell the product now you can sell products plugins is what I meant. You can sell plugins for this for the for the platform but it's always three. And then these other platforms it would be good for us to talk about them a little bit because Joomla is something that's kind of designed for e-commerce and so it kind of has a niche although Wordpress actually doesn't do e-commerce out of the box. But as I said because the plug in there is so strong you can definitely do it. And there's a couple of plugins that are like really. They really dominate the e-commerce plugin platform even though you have options it's pretty easy to choose because of the fact commerce is really the most popular one out there but then Drupal is probably the most difficult one. So it takes a little bit more technical knowledge but it's also like the most powerful developers love it because you can just make it do anything you wanted to do. But I would say in general it's probably a little bit more costly to develop for it then than the others. So I think I'm going to stop here before we get into the details and take some time for some questions I think it'll be more effective if we take a couple of segment for questions on the topics rather. Then just the whole thing at the end. So does anybody have any questions on what we covered as far as platforms the differences and so on yes in the back. OK Well let me tell you how I use this plugin. In our organization for Wordpress our main site is not hosted on Wordpress they were hosted on net Adventist for our main site for A.S.I. which is a platform developed for advantage. OK However there's there are parts that can't be supported by net advantage so we have a part of our features that are hosted through Wordpress. So I'm going to tell you some of the things that we do because that's an excellent excellent question. We use a plugin called for mythical formidable is primarily designed to collect a form information for people that fill out forms to like if you volunteer. If you are any kind of form that you have to fill out on the Web site is using a Word Press plugin called for medical. But the beauty of this blog is that it not only collects information but you don't have to collect information through forms you can import it as well. So what that means is for example exhibitors like all the exhibitors that we have exhibitors can choose where they want they can they can make a request and then they get assigned and they get assigned they get published automatically on the Web site the exhibitor coordinator can enter that information and it is instantly published. But because it's like it's database driven rather than text based like how many of you know like Excel versus word. OK So word you type your text in there and you have a document right where it's X.L. It's. All like in spreadsheets and you've got columns and you have roads so you can kind of think of like exhibitors would be more like columns and rows. Right because it's not really a lot of Texas just the name of the organization and the booth number you're in and so on it's pretty simple as a concept. However because it's it's entered in it in a database type format. Then we can take that information we can publish it to our ministries convention app. I don't know how many of you have that installed but you can look at the exhibitors or anything else for that matter in that app but that information could also be taken and published on the Web site and it's exactly the same information that's used everywhere. So if we need to update it you update in one place it it it's done everywhere so that formidable the very powerful plug and I would never ever install Wordpress without using from is just like is just awesome. Then there's other things too like for example you can use e-commerce e-commerce. It would be like a plug in that you could use a security plug and highly recommended especially if using Wordpress because although you know I don't think I wouldn't consider Wordpress to really be insecure I'm not a security specialist because I mean you could go to school for you know I don't know how long to really learn a lot about security so I should definitely say that. But what I would say is one of the one of the things about words that is so so so so popular that you know people do attack it because it's so big like you know Microsoft. It used to be they would it would get attacked a lot more then you know back you know and so we didn't even install any virus protection on Mac. You know and now now we're doing it more so it's kind of that same kind of scenario. But I would definitely always recommend a security plug and it will keep track of the log ins it'll do things that are needed in order to make sure there's no attack. And so that that something and then. There is a lot of different plug ins as well that could be used for different reasons for example if you want to have like a slide or a presentation or something like that where you can there's just a lots and lots of different things but for a middle I mean it does so much that it's amazing like all that I don't know how many of you seen the New Beginnings I'll just say about this one page as well and then we'll move on to another question. But the new beginnings now we've put it all online where there's twenty five plus languages you can download all of the files right there. We we made it so files of the D.V.D.'s so you can download them and you can burn them on a D.V.D. if you want to present them on D.V.D. or those that are available in powerpoint. And so on then those are available as well. So all of that is all driven as well by free middle and so you can you can download all that information and it's like it's over two hundred gigabytes of information that's available and it's all it can be then then that information all can also can be fed to the evangelism app and so on. So those are some practical things. Any other questions and on these platform areas no questions. OK Well let's move on then. So yeah this is just one thing that I couldn't resist. Jerry and I don't know how useful it will be to me but it's a neat concept and a friend showed this to me recently basically it's a new company called the grid. If you go to the grid IO It's actually not fully launched so I'm just going to take a couple minutes because it's just the concept is like wow. And so basically it's a cloud based artificial intelligence that like can you just tell it basically what kind of Web site you want and it'll it can like Korea for you or you can say. All make it more like this and it like here is what you say and then it like makes it more. But you have like no real like coating control over it but it just through artificial intelligence figures out what you want and it just makes it look like you wanted to look. And so it's a neat idea and I couldn't resist kind of throwing it out there just for you guys to be aware. They raise like a ton of money and their fund raiser to get it off the ground it's not like it's not really launched yet but it's an interesting story to follow and see where it goes. Like I said everything's changing so fast that you know who knows and it's hard to be the top guy too because somebody is always going to come and take it from you. Let's talk a little bit about social media. Now I'm not a social media specialist but it's also me is very unfortunate when it comes to getting our message out there. It's very important and I think that there are some misconceptions about social media as well because a lot of times what we do is like we'll try to get out the message that we want to be out there. We will think in terms of what do I want to communicate with the world or or with our fans. OK but a phenomenon in social media that's really important to understand is that it's very important to think of in terms of what your fans want. And I know that sounds a little strange but it's really really important you have to think what do they want. And so basically the ratio that that I would recommend is that you try to put about eighty percent of information out there. They're wanting that is helpful for them that they feel is worthwhile. And twenty percent of the information the thing that you're trying to communicate with them that they aren't necessarily you know. Most interested in but it's the part that you really want to get through examples of that could be for example say that you created something for they could be really useful for people like say you created an e-card or something like that where people can use it and they can send it out to their friends or something like that and it has like a message on there that could be communicated. But because it's something that's useful for them and something that I mean everybody send e-cards anyway right I mean I don't know if everybody does but I do. You know you so you send out e-cards. I don't know if we have any water close by. Sometimes it would be much appreciated. Thank you appreciate that. It's dry out here in Washington isn't a bad back east we're used to lot more humidity. So something like that could be an example of something that we could use. So trying to think of Turner in terms of what kind of things can be useful to my fans or to my friends then that helps to build the people that are interested but it also helps to have the feeling that yes I'm interested I'm going to go back more often because it's something that that somehow is a benefit to me because if we just keep posting every time as ministries you know donate here donate there I mean that's not going to work to to be able to build and in any case I think even though we are ministries and we do need funds we should think in terms of what can we offer Thank you so much. Much appreciated. So that is something that's very important. Now I'm not going to go in depth of each of the platforms but I think we can understand that Twitter is basically short messages that we're getting out there through tweets. And it's something that's very use. All but it's it depends on people like it some people are not much of a fan of it but as a ministry I would say that these four hours till social media that we should really consider we should really consider being on all of these for it doesn't mean we have to be. I would say Facebook and Twitter are definitely the most important but Linked In is something else. Week about for just a moment because it's a more kind of a professional network and so it's kind of like in a way kind of the air type a lot of people where we can we can share on a professional level and we can support we can get services from each other we can benefit each other we can let people know we can offer them and so on and so that's something that's interesting. I'm going to talk about who tweet because again we're trying to keep this really really part really really practical. Thank you so much. So good sweet. And there's others as well is basically software that will post to all of your social media for you so you can imagine that if you have to manage Facebook and Twitter and Instagram and Linked In and all these so then you're going to log in either every day a couple times a week or however often you want to post and you have to go and you have to organize all this. It can take a lot of time to have to do all of that. And so that's why there's features like Hoot Suite that can basically and there's others as well that can post to all of your social media for you. You can also schedule them. So because it is important not to just post everything at the same time because over a period of time it is where you increase your traffic and where more people are going to be interested and also it creates a presence that is more constant which is important. So one of the advantages there is that you can decide when you want to have a publish and. If you're really organized you might be able to you know get in a whole two weeks of things program in advance or even more if you know what things you want to publish and then that way it's more on autopilot and it saves a lot of time. It's also practical I mean a lot of ministries one of the big challenges that we face is that we have so many responsibilities and so many things we have to manage that it becomes very overwhelming and so little things like this that can help us to manage it better and to help us to be able to to really be able to organize it and then kind of forget about it until we have to come back to it is so so practical so who treats the one that I've used the most. But again I encourage you to to search for other similar products of there's another one that can meet your needs better. Do we have any question. Yes it was a good one. Well I think anything that in some way can can benefit them. I think that that that can fit in that category. I think my example of like e-cards verses you know asking people to give money kind of helps us to kind of see the difference between the two things that anything that we feel like can be a service to them I think can be a benefit. Anything that it's true that it's important for us to also understand the demographics of who our people are and I've spoken to some people that are really really good it. All those statistics and been able to find out all that information that's not my specialty I don't know as much about that but. I think that anything that we can use that can really be something that can be useful for the person I think can fit into that category yet. So it's benefiting them rather than them benefiting me. I think in those terms and I think we'll be able to come up with something that that can help. Yes another one. OK. Yeah that's actually a good question for Facebook I'm definitely not an authority on that I know a little bit about more about You Tube and paid for for You Tube and so on but I don't specifically is your question you're wondering how effective that is or what. Right right right exactly. Yeah yeah. Personally I don't put very much of a high value on Facebook ads as an advertiser because I don't. But again I speak not from some authoritative perspective of knowing all the stats on it but I don't think that it's a very effective way to really get a message out there. I'm going to recommend some other ways that are available to nonprofit that that I think are more effective and furthermore they're also free because that's what we're looking for is how can we try to really you know cut our costs in advertising. I would put it in this perspective in this is certainly not some sort of scientific but when is the last. It's time that you clicked on a Facebook ad to go to something that you're interested in you know. And to me I guess that kind of it's kind of a turnoff for me wanting to invest dollars in advertising specifically on Facebook now Facebook can be used and in connecting with people and building fans if we will you know that's a funny word but you know building fan but I personally wouldn't really recommend actually advertising. Yes everybody I was looking for the return on investment. So when you get this right. Yeah yeah yeah. You want to look at that there where somebody is actually doing something right. And it means for example I films are where I sell my software for advertising just to get my name out there and I don't see anybody looking down. Thank you so much that. Very good comment. Any other questions or comments. Yes. Last thing for me understand what they want a relationship with. That's a really good question and I definitely think there should be a very close relationship because after all you're building fans on people that are interested in your field. So if it if it's media for example or like in our case we're doing media training well then we could maybe offer to Tauriel the know how to do this. Thing in media or how do you what's a quick tip for how to build this thing on a website. That's the kind of thing that people are interested in our field. So I mean that's just such a good question because it's so important for there to be a connection between what you're offering them and what kind of services you offer or what kind of messages you want to communicate so an arcade may be getting out the word that there is a training program. Are you interested in learning more. So that would be like a message from us that we are getting out to them. But it's related to the other kinds of things that we're offering them as well maybe in some free little tips or something like that that kind of connects. Yes it's a persona were directly right. What I'm saying looking for donors and sure. Yeah and it's true. OK that's good. Yeah and I think it's something that we have to take time to to think about and to analyze because I sometimes take a while to come to us and it's really different also for depending which field we're in that we have to really kind of focus on it from from our perspective and first of all what's my goal and then what could I offer that that fit into my mission and what I'm trying to accomplish. And I'd be happy to even think of some of those things and we could dialogue later but you know I not necessarily that something comes to my mind right now you should do this maybe somebody else has some other suggestions. You're right. Yes Yes Very true very true. Anything else before we move on. OK So one of the one of the important things that we used today besides Social media is email marketing. It's very important. As to use email marketing because it is a way that connects with a broader spectrum of people than just social media. I am actually not much of a social media fan myself even though I have like a ton of friends on Facebook I never really spend time on Facebook whereas email is something that covers a larger age group as well you know pretty much everybody has e-mail I know our our inbox is flooded and you know it's a challenge and where it's not as good as like actually sending a car like that comment about the card I'd always rather get a card with a new card you know. But it is still an effect of method that the more effective then so so well it has a broader spectrum than social media let's put it that way. There's a few resources I'd like to suggest for email marketing. And the reason that I put vertical response on the top of this is if you google Vertical Response you'll find it but it's not the most popular e-mail marketing software out there but they're very friendly toward non-profits and so nonprofits they'll actually give you unlimited contacts and ten thousand free e-mail per month. So depending on how large your organization is it can be a lot lot more interesting than like male chimp for example which is the monster of email marketing. I mean male chimp is probably I don't have statistics for that and look them up. But of course they're available for anybody to see. But still it's definitely the strongest one out there. Male chimp is very very interesting for for profits because or non-profits but first Mauler smaller lists because you paid directly according. How many contacts you have in your lists. So if you were to like say for example you wanted to send out ten thousand emails per month and you have a contact list of ten thousand. So you just do it once a month because that's another thing it's really important not to send out your messages too often because you get a lot more unsubscribed if you send them off out too often. But you know depending on what you're sending can kind of dictate a little bit how often I mean I would say the general rule you wouldn't want to send out things more than every two weeks or something like that. If it's really a short little messages you might be able to do it more often but let's just say for example that you have ten thousand people in your database. And so you want to send out one message for a month you can do it absolutely free with Vertical Response or if you only have five thousand and you want to send out twice a month then you can do it as well. OK. And then constant contact that's another service as well I think it used to be quite popular I'm not sure how popular it is now. Male chimp is really taking a lot of a lot of that male chimp some of the advantages there is if you want to send out messages really often it's unlimited how many messages you can send out all the prices based on is the number of contacts. So for example the I noticed that the General Conference ministerial department is the I don't know how many of you are subscribed to the daily Bible reading very you're familiar with that you can read through the whole Bible I think it's over a three year period five year OK. Yes that's right. Believe his prophet That's right. Well I was interested to see that their use e-mail Tim for that if you click on the link you see it right there but they're thinning out. Messages every single day to a certain amount of contact so probably that was the best deal for them because they're sending out messages every day and so they pay less because it's based on number of contacts rather than number of e-mails. So you have to look at those differences in order to see which one is best for you. But for Vertical Response you need. You have to apply for the nonprofit account in order to get it free so you have to go through a process of providing your five A one c three documentation or equivalent if you're in another country. They will honor documentation from your country I'm not sure of how many countries they support I mean in Canada they definitely support Canada they probably support other countries as well. So video video is extremely important maybe before I jump into this I should just see if there's any question about email marketing as I said it's I prefer to kind of take the questions the topic by topic is there anything that we need to talk about for e-mail marketing questions you may have you know we can talk a little bit about that. So the the best way to do it that the most should I say at the co-host the most will have the most the least complaint is through like your Web site. But how about offering them something to sign up for your list so you're encouraging them more rather than just say sign up maybe offer them something free if they sign up. Offer them different special that they sign up. If your question is so good because of the fact that the more e-mail marketing is rather challenging because if you get if you end up adding like a whole bunch of people to your list that are interested in you start getting complaints it will affect your delivery rate. There's no question about it. And you can even get problems with your provider is if you if they. Go up to high as far as the complaints are concerned. And with these features you can. There are tools that you can export contacts from your email or whatever it might be that whatever software you use and you can export them from your contacts and you can import them. So you can build your lists that way but you just have to be more careful. You should never ever and really you can't you can't do it with these providers anyway. But you should never ever send out mass e-mails without an unsubscribe link. In fact in Canada recently they passed legislation that required organizations to the certain as of a certain date all organizations had to resubscribe every single subscriber on their lists. So small companies we didn't do it to this or that but but all the big companies all did it. You know it's just for us it would have been really complicated to do all that and it would've you know how to big impact but that was what the legislation said needed to be done. And so it is something you have to be really careful. So I would that the best way really to build it is you know use all your avenues use social media use your Web site use everything but offer something and then another way that you can do it is if you're selling products is an easy and ethical way to do it is to simply have it by default that they subscribe to your list when they purchase products but you have to disclose that. OK so you disclose that and then in that way by default they get subscribed by the court they can always on the Skype so that Bill dealers a lot faster than if you do it the other way around where you know you have to they have to click on the button in order to subscribe. A lot. More Effective other ways is that for example if you're offering down things for download you can make it required for them to submit an e-mail address before and then the little disclosure there about subscribing. So those are different ways that you can use to build it is anybody else have some suggestions Yes They're saying those e-mails are buyers here. Yes that is I know Vertical Response does not required a double opt in. Well they do not require double opt in from a web site but not from importing a list. OK but if you actually subscribe I think you can turn that feature off. But it's true the double opt in is is very popular and it also I would recommend it in because of the fact that you guarantee that that e-mail address is a good one and if you send two bad email addresses too much you get too many bounces that can affect your delivery as well. So so there are things to consider and any other comments on that and I need to be watching the time to make sure we cover everything we twelve that we finish at twelve. That right. OK OK good. Twenty five aren't so any other questions or comments on that. OK so we're going to talk about online video and some of the things that are important and some of the things that are trendy. First of all I just want to say that there's different providers and we have an A as I remember that provides video services three angels Tube He's actually here with us and so if you have content that you're interested in and put it up on a service similar to You Tube you can use them among others. Oh course You Tube is the biggest one out there there. There are huge and it's free. You can put all of your things up there but you know is another suggestion as well. Basically some of the differences between like You Tube and the M E O is that You Tube as you know very well you get adds a lot more where you know you pay for the service but it's not very expensive and you never have any ads it's used by a lot of like video professionals like there's a lot of content up there that that's more kind of like amateurs and so on that it's just kind of a different niche but it's a good place. I don't know how many of you have seen the greats link videos for kids it's the Sabbath school videos. Those are all on video. I think they might be on youtube as well. I think they're officially on them. You know I don't know that they're officially on You Tube and there's other channels as well. You can have your own channels and videos are also on BOTH You Tube and video but something that's really important. If you're thinking about creating content and creating video is that today it's really popular to have things that are really short and you might already know this but there is a phenomenon where you know what people try to do today is create short videos videos that you want to watch more of them. And so it keeps it the what the viewer more in touch when they have to keep clicking on the next in order to get where you're going now. Maybe I'm just a little bit too old to to like to do that because we're kind of more used to the longer time period. But that is a phenomena and something that we really have to think about especially for the younger generation is that the attention span is getting shorter and shorter and we got it. Click on the next one. So if you're thinking about like some sort of video or something promotional for your Web site. It's very important. Just think in terms of how you can keep it short and maybe multiple rather than something that's really long. Another thing that is interesting about You Tube that I definitely want to mention that that is that is very interesting from a promotional standpoint is that is that you can advertise to a local area as well so you don't have if you decide to pay for advertising on You Tube You don't have to just do it everywhere you can choose like a local area and you can advertise just there so this can be very interesting if you're doing like an evangelist a crusade or you're trying to target a certain area in order to get to get the word out. Then I definitely recommend the possibility of being able to use that feature to reach out to to a targeted area. I want to talk a little bit more about maybe just a couple other things and video. It's important for these days it's very important for things to be real to life. People don't seem to it doesn't seem to be as popular for things that are really necessarily it should be polished but it can be something that's very real. I think it attracts people a lot more. And also if you're going to put a video online on the other hand it's important for it to be something that's professional and representative because even though today it's really just putting thing you want up. I still think that as an organization it's very important to put something that is representative of the organization that the professional can have a young and fresh look. But it's important to to talk to somebody that that specialize in that area because it's otherwise you might get something that you're not satisfied with there doesn't represent you well now. Here is a few things to consider that's a little bit more technical. And as I mentioned it's it's sometimes challenging to kind of balance that but there are some things that are happening in our world as it changes that are things that we definitely have to think about. One of them is that security is more and more important to people. How many of you know what the H T T P S stands for Not stands for but what it does what it is. OK So when you see the H T T P S That means that it's a secure site that uses a secure a certificate in order to encrypt all of the data that transfers between the end user's computer and the server. So basically that means that all of the information is protected so that if you're entering like for example e-mail addresses or certainly if you're entering credit card numbers or things like that that are of sensitive nature it always has to travel through that encryption. However it's becoming more and more the industry standard for your entire web site to be secured. OK. And so I would highly recommend anybody that is interested in moving in that direction to check into how you can have a secure certificate that is installed on your entire site. So any time you go there you've got the H T T P S. And then one other thing to consider is that if you get a higher level certificate your name can even be written on there. And so the browser will show what name that is a little bit more of a id. Entity so so people feel more secure about that. Google is actually kind of changing some of the way that they're ranking people as well to where they are prioritizing those that have cells installed on their entire site. So this is the one thing that I've been encouraging side to do as well because our entire site is not a cell but any site that I would ever build. There are some technical difficulties with that and that's one reason but any site that I would I would build or that my organization to build today would always be S.S.L. because it's very very important to consider. However with S.S.L. something that's important to understand is that normally it requires a dedicated IP address a dedicated IP addresses where you can next to an exact address in order to go to the server and so that's unique for your particular website. But because of the push toward S.S.L. security and the importance of that now all modern browsers are beginning to support are beginning to not require IP addresses in order to run S.S. elf and so I know this is a little bit technical but it's important for you know because if you are going to run an S.S.L. if you're going to get an IP address you'll be able to be more compatible with all browsers including old ones. If you don't want to pay the money for it to get an I a dedicated IP address then just be aware that you will be compatible with pretty much all new browsers but all browsers may have issues in not recognizing that because they'll be more than one site using the. At IP address. So it's just something to to be aware of and to consider. But I would definitely recommend S.S.L. because more and more people know what it means and more and more people will feel more secure or you know entering information on your website if they know like for example on the S I Web site even though the whole thing is not as a cell. Any form that you fill out in is all on S.S.L. so when you go to fill out a form even if you put in sensitive information you know that that's on S.S.L. and you can see it right up there. And so we've covered the bases even though technicalities make a little bit hard for us to do that for the entire site. And now another thing that is a really really important these days is that web sites have to be mobile friendly. Used to be you know how when you look at a Web site on your phone and you can't read it you have to zoom in in order to be able to read it because the Texas still small and it doesn't it doesn't it's not responsive in order to fit onto your your mobile device. Well there are still a fair number of Web sites out there and if you have a Web site like that you really need to consider having it updated to be mobile friendly because more and more people are looking at both their e-mail as well as at web sites on their mobile devices and again here Google you know I guess they just think this so big they can just control where we go with everything but again they are ranking sites that are responsive or mobile friendly they're ranking them higher. Well I don't think it's quite yet but they announced that they're going to be ranking they were higher. And so that's another reason I think it's just a push to try to get us to come up because people were adopting mobile. It's really called responsive because what responsive means is that when it's on a large screen. It will be larger and then when it's on a small screen the design will change to where it looks. It's still readable and looks good on a mobile device. So if you're sitting having somebody like develop a website for you that's like one of them. These are all like things you have to make sure that they know how to do and that they will be included in that. And now another thing is that a lot of times like say for example we decided to go with one of the open source solution like Wordpress for example. Well Wordpress although they have like their own like blogging platform where you can get just a Word Press account and you can manage it there. I don't really recommend that because they don't open it up to all the plugins that you can do and there's not as much flexibility and so what that means is that you're going to have to have a web host or a service provider in order to host your site. OK So there's another level involved if you're going to do that. And so if you're going to do that it's really really important to choose somebody that is going to give you very fast service that the servers are not going to be bogged down they're not going to be slow and on most fast connections today you can see that very well yourself if you go repetitively to the site it takes a long time to load. You want to consider going somewhere else. Yes I recently upgraded and switched services writers. We saw at least twice. It was at least twice as fast as it was before with a simple is exactly the same thing running even the same resources were quoted by the company. I mean the company was very similar resources that they were saying was allotted but a huge huge difference in speed. So that's something that's really important to to look. When you're going to look for the hosting provider and basically I think I would personally recommend to most ministries to try to find somebody that knowledgeable about web development that has a ministry focus. This is something that I really developed a burden for because I saw the kinds of prices that developers are charging in order to build websites in order to build mobile apps and all of these things end and prices are just so high that a lot of times the ministry's can't really afford to use their services in order to develop. But the problem is that what happens is that ministers often pay the price of not having somebody that's competent to to help and guide them through the process. And so I really had a growing burden for this and that's one reason why Also we started training young people in this as well because we felt like it was so important to be able to provide these kind of minute these kind of services to ministries and to for profits to if they're if their goal is to be able to spread the gospel share in Christ in the marketplace. And so we started developing this is part of our curriculum for our Media Training Program. So what we do in order in and it's in an interesting kind of philosophy because what we actually do is we invite young people to come. It's to wish in free they don't have to pay anything to be there they have to cover the room and board. But there's no cost whatsoever for tuition. They can come and they can learn on site and then we have clients that hire us in order to develop Web sites for them. We train the young people how to do it for them and we all work together so our prices are very very low. The price goes where it goes forward to train the young person to be able to have a skill that they can use and then bless other ministries later whether it be in video production or web site development or audio and so on and so this is been something that's really been a growing burden for me is how we can support our our ministries. And we've had the privilege of supporting a number of them and I won't start saying names of who we've had the privilege of the forty in but we've had the privilege of supporting a number of people and really helping them to be able to save a lot of money but also at the same time to make wise decisions in this field. So that's something that if you're if you're interested in I don't want this plug to go on too long but I'm just saying that I have a burden for this and maybe there's others if there's others in that's wonderful too but there's there's a need for this sort of thing where ministries can have these resources that they can have websites developed that cost much much less than if you would go out to a regular company to get them developed Google Ad Words this is something we definitely have to talk about before we're finished because for nonprofits this is a really big deal. You have to apply for this but Google does have ten thousand dollars of ad words available for nonprofits basically what that means is that is you. It's through the Google grant system. And if you apply for it you can be listed in where the ads are listed on Google so either you know on the side or on the top there's ad I feel like that a lot more effective way of advertising than like Facebook for example because of the fact that it's very much geared toward your search and what you're looking. Before and you were already. That's that's the mindset that you're in is OK I'm going to go find this information or find out information and in the fact that it's free also is something of course you have to be a five one c three but is something that is a lot not a lot of ministers know about but it's something that's very very important to check into. I don't know exactly how strict all of it is or or the qualifications like it but it's something to definitely definitely check into yes. Yeah I mean you have to go through an application process and another thing is the important understand is that you you can't like bid for the highest dollars either there's like a limit so you can't. And that's those key words that would like cost a lot per click. There's a limit on how high you can get them. No it's per organization. Yeah yeah. It's proven ization. Yeah. So that's definitely something that you want to check into because it is something that is is available to apply for that. I think it's actually yearly. Yeah I do. I'm sorry. OK OK monthly. OK. No. Yeah but so. So it's definitely something worth looking into that that's very interesting. Yeah I think that's a lot. Course it doesn't cost them anything but it's good. So that's a definite I'm in second. Now there's another good resource called Freelancer dot com and I'm going to just take a couple minutes to talk about the pros and the cons of this kind of. Work OK so the pros is that you can get. You can hire out jobs at a very very low cost very low cost and i probably a lot of you are here because that's a need you know you need to find a way that you can develop for the web at a low cost. And so you can often get people you can hire people that will do jobs a lot of them are from other countries as well but you can get people from North America if you want as well. And it's a huge huge community again. So there's you know like millions of people that will bid on a job that you place. So the big big advantages that you can get people that are very competent and that will do jobs at a very low cost compared to if you were to just go to like your local firm or something here locally. However I couldn't present all of the wonderful things of it if I don't say what some of the challenges are too. One of the big challenges in working with freelances is that you have to be prepared to be able to very very specifically tell them what they need to do because if you don't have the technical skills in order to explain exactly what you need you're probably going to be disappointed because many what I have found in my experience with working as freelancers is that often they won't take the time to put into the whole concept in the whole design the whole thinking of what would be best and they won't take time really to know your organization either which is also extremely important. So it can be a good situation but you have to be prepared to have all of those kind of things a very well defined before choosing somebody to do that sort of a job. So but you can save a lot of money so if you. You feel like you have enough information that you can give it to them then that's something to consider definitely and I think that's probably the best website but there's others out there. I was really excited to hear Jesse Johnson told me recently that there's an Adventist website that is beginning to develop for developers and things like this as well. Now I don't know how much that's gotten off the ground and I tried to look it up and couldn't find it so. But anyway it it is it would be wonderful to have something like that as well so that we would be able to have resources among Adventists to be able to do development. Having said that I would also say that a lot of times when we try to do things on our own we can't do things as well as we can when we embrace the whole world. And that's very true when it comes to developments and one reason why I am very much an advocate for like open source software and things like that because I feel like when we restrict it only to charge a nomination we just there's no way we can compete with the resources of the whole world out there and it's very clearly seen often an advantage. The fact that they don't go as far because we're so much more restricted in our resources. So it's just a little bit of my philosophy there although I'm very very supportive of Adam as developer than working with admin today as I members to I mean to me that's so important but we have to also be ready to realize the limitations of what we can do compared to when you have a huge huge community that can build a product and move it forward. I think or time's just about up I don't know if there's any other questions that you may have before we we close. Yes. Because with me me. That's that's actually a really good question and it really depends on what you need on the website. So for example cost is directly related to whether you need e-commerce whether you need to have like a video platform or whether you're just it's a simple informational Web site where there's maybe not interactivity or a couple of forms of something like that. And so I would say that basically to develop Web sites that can be you know a large price range where it can be anywhere from maybe five hundred thousand for something really simple or it could be you know up higher than that as well. So it really depends on what you need but it can be quite canonical. Yes. Well what's really important for and I'm not a search engine optimization guru but what's really important if you want to get out you or your content is to optimize it for search words. So it's very important for you to use the key words that you want people to type in when they search for it so and you can you can. There are several services that you can use to analyze it in C. and you can even Google Ad Words It will even do that for you as well it'll analyze to see kind of where your ranking is and how high you are. And you can modify the key words according to do that. And it was courting to get so you can get listed higher. But I will tell you that even though I'll every single one of us would love to just write this perfect article that would just get rated up really high. There's another factor. That's really really important in that's how many people are linking to you how many people are sending to you. And so even though you might you know be here with a wonderful message if nobody else is saying this is a great message it's going to affect your ranking you're not going to be able to get as high. So it's it used to be very key words was kind of the ultimate. But it's not so much that way anymore so it's a little bit more complicated. Well like you know for example if if you would put a web you'd put a link on your Web site to another website like amazing facts or a a size of a like that. Well so you're linking to them and that will actually affect their ratings to where they will they will get more listed higher because there's more people linking to them. So there's more Web sites that are saying this is a good Web site go there. Yes if you can link to anybody I would say if you are starting to like in bad logos or in bad information from those webs Well logos is probably not a problem if it's a simple logo on a link. But if you're actually and getting content from their web site you should get permission for that. But if it's a simple link you don't need permission. I think our time's up and I think we need to stop. So thank you so much will close with prayer. Appreciate each of you being here today. Father in heaven we thank you so much for giving us technology and we just pray that you would help us to be able to use it to bring honor and glory to your name we pray that you would give us tools that you would help us to know how we can get the message out there and we just pray that each of us here at the convention and that we would be buyers to finish the work as quickly as we can so that we can meet here. It's services and industry if you would like to learn something or if you like or free minds are pleased at the W W W W verse.


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