How important do you think it is for the United States to have plenty of computer programmers? Pretty important, right? Just think about how much technology you’re surrounded by every single minute of your life. Our use of technology and software is obviously only going to grow. This is why we believe it’s crucial to teach our children to code. One way we can all easily do that is to support the Hour to Code initiative. Read more…
Posted by Matt Harrell on October 29th, 2013 | No Comments »
Posted by Matt Harrell on February 8th, 2012 | No Comments »
Last night, while I was settling into some evening work, I received a text message from one of our first customers (yep, that’s how we roll). He wondered if I had a few minutes to “chat MemberHub”. I said, sure! What resulted was an extremely productive and encouraging 1 1/2 hour discussion. Here are some things I learned from that call that I want to share with you: Read more…
Posted by Caroline Cobb on July 26th, 2011 | No Comments »
Posted by Matt Harrell on June 30th, 2011 | 4 Comments »
- Caroline wants to learn more about social media marketing (so do we)
- She’s already strategizing a really cool social media marketing idea for August
- She’s spending her summer days with us; not hanging at the pool
- Caroline is a volleyball super star for Meredith College
- One of her passions is teaching the sport and manners to younger women
- She has great taste in music
- Her affinity for tacos and spicy food is comparable to the rest of the team (very important stuff)
You can email Caroline at firstname.lastname@example.org and while you’re at it..help her respect the Twitter and follow her at http://twitter.com/cobbcaro (those college kids are so stuck on Facebook ;-P).
Posted by Matt Harrell on April 22nd, 2011 | No Comments »
Amazon is down but MemberHub is up! Well, the east-coast server of Amazon EC2 is still down. But we have succesfully moved MemberHub.com over to their west coast server.
We recommend that when you access MemberHub again to logout and then back in to clear out your browser’s cache.
Thank you to all the users we spoke that were so full of grace and understanding.
Have a blessed Easter weekend!
Posted by Matt Harrell on April 22nd, 2011 | 1 Comment »
As I write this post, MemberHub.com is experiencing the largest outage since we launched our service. Yet we are not alone. Sites such Foursquare, Quora, Reddit, Hootsuite, Flavors.me and others have experienced downtime and felt the the effects of Amazon’s current outage. In fact, well over 100 sites have been affected.
To help our users understand what’s going on I’ve put some notes together. Read more…
Posted by Matt Harrell on October 1st, 2010 | 1 Comment »
We are in the process of making updates to our website. The fist thing we did was update the homepage.
While we do serve large organizations with thousands of members, the majority of our customers are the small to medium size churches, nonprofits and schools.
We know that a common challenge across all these organizations is duplicate member data. You’ve got spreadsheets and databases in several systems.
With the enhancements that we’ve made in 2.0, MemberHub can help rectify the challenge of managing members and communication in one system. This is a big part of our original vision and we know this is how we can best serve the majority of our customers…centralizing data, communication and logistics all in one place.
What do you think?
Posted by Matt Harrell on August 18th, 2010 | 6 Comments »
One of the most common questions with regards to implementing social media objectives at churches, nonprofits and associations is “Whose responsibility is it?”. Should the IT people do it? After all, they know how all this techy stuff works. What about marketing/communication? They are in control of our “messaging” and “branding”. What about the leaders in the organization? They should do it because they reflect the vision and heartbeat of the organization.
The truth is most social media experts will suggest that all staff members at your organization should have social media as part of his/her daily tasks. Social media should be used at all levels of the organization.
Earlier today, during the free M2Live webinar, Cynthia Ware (a well-respected church technology consultant) suggested that churches should appoint a Social Media Director. Someone that is responsible for laying out the plan for your church’s use of social media. I for one think this is a great idea! Here’s why:
- Every church should have a social media policy for their staff. This person is responsible for that.
- This person is also responsible for all social media strategy. What should Facebook be used for? What should it NOT be used for. Will you use Twitter? What is the PLAN? Who responds to ridiculous comments on your Facebook page? Should your pastor blog? What is a blog? Should someone wear a Hootsuite?
- All questions social media related are filtered through this person.
- This person is responsible for new trends and staying on top of the rapidly-changing landscape that is social media.
Should you hire or does your social media director already exist? What else am I missing? Why is hiring a social media a director a good idea? Why is it a bad idea?
Posted by Matt Harrell on August 4th, 2010 | 8 Comments »
Much of the online church community is familiar with the upcoming free conference called The Nines, but are you familiar with The Tens? Okay, I made that up. But, there is something important going on this year on 10.10.10. It’s called the National Faith in Action Sunday and it’s all about just that…putting your faith in action.
In case you’re not familiar, Faith in Action (FIA) is a four-week campaign with the purpose of empowering churches to get out of the building and into the local community. What is Faith In Action?
Faith in Action is a four-week, church-wide campaign that creates an outward focus and a heart to serve in your congregation. FIA culminates in a Sunday where regular services are cancelled, and the entire congregation engages in service projects in and with the community.
There is a lot more information on the website including an Overview, slew of resources, stories of other churches, and they have an active Facebook Page too.
The four-week campaign is “embraced by churches year-round, but many choose to participate on National Faith in Action Day.” On this one Sunday every year, churches get out into the community, canceling their normal Sunday service and work together with other churches to serve their community. I can’t think of a better way to model Christ’s call for unity within in the church.
How awesome would it be if every church in America participated on National Faith in Action Day? What would happen to local communities? What effect could this have the body of Christ? What would Anne Rice think?
We think FIA is awesome, so we’d like to spread the word and here’s what else we’re doing about it: we’re offering our services for FREE to organizations for the 3 months leading up to and during their 4 week Faith In Action Campaign. Simply use the following coupon when selecting your plan: FIA101010 and you’ll get 3 months use of MemberHub for FREE!
THIS IS ONLY VALID UNTIL SEPTEMBER 1, 2010
So has your church considered participating in a Faith in Action campaign? Have you participated in the past? How did it go? Did you share your story anywhere? Leave a comment!
[Image from Faith in Action]
Posted by Matt Harrell on July 19th, 2010 | 11 Comments »
From July 8-11, over 3,000 staff, volunteers and vendors converged on Salt Lake City, UT for the 4-day General Assembly of the YMCAs. It’s an event that is held every four years and the whole city was infused with the YMCA community. Literally everywhere you went, were signs of endorsement for the event. It was expected to generate $3 million for Salt Lake County’s economy. By the looks of things I’d be surprised if they didn’t hit that number.
We were there as an exhibitor. At first I was a bit skeptical of the potential return on such an event, but as we looked closer we began to realize that this is the perfect opportunity for our company to share our success stories from working with the YMCA of the Triangle as well as speak with close to 3,000 Y staff and volunteers. I’m confident now that being there was the right thing to do.
Here are some observations from our time at the General Assembly:
1. The YMCA has Some Serious History
Saturday’s general session ended with the introduction of the Y’s new brand and new strategy, (culminating with a very bizarre rendition of U2′s Beautiful Day, I might add) but the morning started with the introduction of the 2010 inductees to the YMCA Hall of Fame. The list included such notable men and women as Ellen Brown, the first female YMCA staff employee and John D. Rockefeller Jr. The surprising thing to me was that each one of the 17 inductees was born in the 1800′s! It was powerful to learn about each inductee as they splashed the antique photos up on the ginormous LCD screen and shared stories about how these people contributed to the organization that has had such an impact on millions of lives in local communities for the past 160 years! It was moving.
“For the first time in 43 years, the YMCA unveiled a new brand strategy to increase understanding of the impact the nonprofit makes in communities.” The organization is now referred to as “The Y” and the new logo reflects this. It’s interesting that the foundational guiding beliefs and truths upon which the organization was built continue to take a back seat in the organization’s core message. It’s also unfortunate that a search for the YMCA turns up tons of images for the Village People.
3. YMCA is Missing the Boat on Social Media
The Y seems to be missing the potential of social media. They want to re-introduce themselves to America. They’ve already appeared on Good Morning America and they’ve got big plans for an all-out media blitz. That’s great! But in his presentation, Neil Nicoll, President and CEO of YMCA of the USA had no mention of using social media tools like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter to help create the powerful networks that can so easily spread your message for you. Perhaps they do have a plan and we’ll be surprised, but I’ve done social media presentations for Y executives and spoke with a LOT of others during the conference. My general observation is that none of the Ys are doing social media right and they’re all looking at each other waiting for one of them to just nail it. It would be a real help if the YMCA of the USA had a strategy in place that all other Y’s could turn too.
4. YMCA Spirit is Hard to Ignore
As a child, did you ever attend a YMCA summer camp? I did. I spent 5 summers at Camp Kanata, in North Carolina and I also participated in the Y Guides program (at that time it was called Indian Guides…needless to say that had to change). The child-like enthusiasm and magic that happened in those programs can be felt throughout all levels of the organization and it’s people. Whether it’s a seminar at the YMCA General Assembly or a fundraising meeting at a local Y, the staff and volunteers always know how to balance a proper amount of silliness and professionalism in such a way that it’s hard not to want to be part of what they’re doing.
5. The Y is Going to Grow Even Stronger
Regardless of any missing religious affiliation and lack of social media prowess, the YMCA is going to continue to grow. The work that they do in communities is a true blessing to millions around the world and this can no longer go unnoticed. They’ve done 2 years of research to figure out how the general public perceives the organization and compared that to it’s core principles. They’ve done their homework for the new strategy which focuses on Youth Development, Healthy Living and Social Responsibility.
As Neil Nicoll said, “The Y is more than just a place for a gym and a swim.” It always has been and it will continue to be. Now they just need to remind the world who they are. The proof is already there! It is a blessing for us to be able to serve them!
Were you there? What did you take away? What do you think about the Y’s new strategy and logo?