Blackbaud Social Launches to Help Nonprofits Increase Constituent Engagement through Social MediaStaff Report / LowCountryBizSC
CHARLESTON, SC - August 23, 2010 - Blackbaud, Inc. (Nasdaq: BLKB) today announced the launch of Blackbaud Social™, a new offering that provides social media solutions for nonprofits to create both private-label and public socially-enabled communities. It is the only integrated social platform that offers organizations an easy way to extend their mission, access user data, and leverage it for meaningful constituent engagement.
"Nonprofits see the rapidly growing potential of leveraging social media to acquire new constituents and engage them with their mission and programs," said Marc Chardon, Blackbaud's chief executive officer. "Blackbaud Social finally gives organizations the ability to integrate their social media strategy with their overall communications, and most importantly, with their CRM."
Blackbaud Social is a complementary solution to the company's existing suite of fundraising, Internet, and constituent relationship management (CRM) solutions. When integrated with Blackbaud Sphere(r), it creates the most comprehensive online solution for social media, email marketing, online event management, website management, and advocacy. With Blackbaud Social, nonprofits can drive awareness and traffic from public networks such as Facebook(r), Twitter(r), and YouTube(r) to their own private-label house social networks where constituents can meaningfully engage. Blackbaud Social enhances an organization's ability to more effectively communicate and gain insight into constituent behavior. With a single sign-in, the platform supports bi-directional data transfer to personalize a user's experience while capturing key data in the user's CRM profile.
In partnership with ThePort Network, the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) will use Blackbaud Social to provide a private online community for its members. Founded in 1960, AFP advances ethical and effective fundraising through its 30,000 members in 213 chapters throughout the world. "The fundraising profession advances through open communication, networking and the sharing of knowledge, which is why AFP's work with The Port and implementation of Blackbaud Social is so important," said Kathy Compton, chief marketing officer for AFP. "This robust social media platform will create an online community where AFP members can easily access new value-added programs, interact with colleagues, and work towards achieving their organizations' philanthropic missions."
Additionally, the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation recently built an online community to connect people living with paralysis to friends, family members, scientists, and each other. "Through the Reeve Foundation Paralysis Community, powered by Blackbaud Social, we are able to provide a community where our members can engage, contribute content, and access information that is specific to them," said Rob Gerth, the Reeve Foundation's director of digital media. "In turn, we can learn more about our supporters and centralize our chapters' social media communities, while extending them to public social sites to increase our reach."
To introduce the technology and best practices built into Blackbaud Social, a free web seminar series "Blackbaud Social Hour: Engaging Your Supporters through Social Media" will kick off on September 17 and will continue the three following Fridays at 1 p.m. EDT. The series of four web seminars presented by industry experts will explore how to engage supporters using social media. The Blackbaud Social Hour web seminar series will feature the following four sessions:
- **Unlocking the True value of Social Media–-the Answers are in the Data
**Holly Ross, Executive Director, NTEN
September 17 at 1 p.m. ET
- **Engaging Donors Through Social Media
**Frank Barry, Professional Services Manager, Blackbaud
September 24 at 1 p.m. ET
- **Private-Label House Social Networks–-10 Really Good Reasons to Build Community on Your Organization's Website
**Jeff Patrick, President and Founder, Common Knowledge
October 1 at 1 p.m. ET
- **Achieving Success with Blackbaud Social: A Reeve Foundation Case Study
**Mark Davis, Director of Enterprise Internet Solutions, Blackbaud; Aaron Biddar, Executive Vice President, The Port; and Rob Gerth, Director of Digital Media, The Reeve Foundation
October 8 at 1 p.m. ET
Nonprofit professionals can register for one web seminar, or for the entire series at www.blackbaud.com/blackbaudsocial.
To celebrate the launch of Blackbaud Social, the company is also holding a Blackbaud INSPIRE Tweetaway and will be giving away four passes next week to the 2010 Blackbaud Conference for Nonprofits, which is being held in Washington, D.C, from October 20 to 22, 2010. To enter, nonprofits can follow Blackbaud on Twitter, and respond to the question "How do you inspire supporters with social media?" by @replying Blackbaud and tagging it #bbsocial. For more information, visit www.blackbaud.com/inspire.
More than 4,600 nonprofit organizations around the world use Blackbaud Internet solutions, including Blackbaud(r) NetCommunity, Blackbaud NetCommunity Grow™, Blackbaud Sphere, Blackbaud Sphere(r) Grow™, and now Blackbaud Social for content email, and event management; online fundraising, online community building, and advocacy. For more information about Blackbaud Social, or to request a demonstration, visit www.blackbaud.com/blackbaudsocial.
Blackbaud is the leading global provider of software and services designed specifically for nonprofit organizations, enabling them to improve operational efficiency, build strong relationships, and raise more money to support their missions. Approximately 22,000 organizations use one or more Blackbaud products and services for fundraising, constituent relationship management, financial management, website management, direct marketing, education administration, ticketing, business intelligence, prospect research, consulting, and analytics. Since 1981, Blackbaud's sole focus and expertise has been partnering with nonprofits and providing them the solutions they need to make a difference in their local communities and worldwide. _