Part of the MA in Social Media course that I am undertaking at Salford University is a semester long Community Project. It is here that we team up with an institution, be it a business, charity or academia, that wants to expand their use and knowledge of Social Media to raise their brand awareness and to hopefully partake in manageable, cost effective and effective marketing.

This is our first chance to unleash some of our newly forged skills on the community as well as giving real world practical experience us and the clients. Crikey!

The purpose of the project is to team up with an institution and work together with them to establish a Social Media Strategy that will be effective, bring results and be useable in the long term.

As I live in Norway, have chosen to work with a charity based here in the city of Bergen called Kolibri: Children at Risk Foundation (CARF). Kolibri was set up in 1992 by a British man called Gregory Smith, who had moved to Bergen in Norway. In 1992 he sold all of his belongings and auctioned his house and moved to Brazil initially to help children in the streets of São Paulo.  Throughout the years this focus has shifted to the preventing children getting on the streets in the first place and in doing so being able to work more effectively. the Norwegian charity Kolibri, which is Norwegian for “hummingbird” works together with the Brazilian wing (ahem) “Beija Flor” – which is the Portuguese word for hummingbird.

Street Children Copyright All rights reserved by carf

Street Children Copyright All rights reserved by carf

The Kolibri Project are looking to revise their social media strategy in order to raise peoples awareness of them, the work that they do and of course try to attract more funding. Social Media such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube are used more and more as cost effective methods of self promotion using such sites and outlets as ways of connecting with thier audience and people that want to engage and spread the conversation.

To date I have met twice with people at Kolibri here in Bergen, General Manager Sigve Fjeldtvedt and Head of Communications Kristine Askvik with a third meeting scheduled at the start of the coming week. I will be using kobestarr.com as means of keeping a log of the development and the implementation of the Kolibri’s Social Media Strategy.

The first meeting with the Sigve established that they saw the potential in social meadia, theire website had recently been revised in the past two years to accommodate, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, MySpace and Flickr links. So they are well aware of these outlets. Kolibri are well aware of the importance of connecting with people and the conversation and links that can be developed via Social Media. The heart of the problem with Kolibri’s strategy is the effectiveness of their current strategy. In order to make it work well for them they need to develop a manageable method that will bring results from now into the future. Ideally the sites will work with each other to improve the efficiency of their workflow and so maximise the potential connections and increase engagement with their subject matter.

As it stands today (Saturday 10th March 2012 at 17.07 NorskTime) the Kolibri Twitter account @KolibriCARF has 84 followers, is following 91 people and has tweeted 293 times. I was told that the tweets are generated automatically when a story is posted to their website. The twitter account page has none of the branding that can be found on the website.

The Kolibri Facebook Page has 688 fans, which is a great start! Again with all posts being generated from the website with additional content from the fans. This does not currently have the unique or “vanity” URL that it is entitled to after earning 25 fans.

The Kolibri YouTube page currently has 4 subscribers, 7 video uploads and 1066 video views. The last video was uploaded 6months ago. As with the twitter account the YouTube Channel has none of the branding that is present on the website

Kolibri also has a MySpace Page with 60 friends. The last comment was posted to this page 2 years ago.

Finally, in terms of their current Social Media output is the Flickr Page, which seems to have the most prolific output. I was told that this was actually managed by Gregory Smith in Brazil, who has taken some fantastic photographs of the work out there!

So that was a brief introduction to the Kolibri Project guys! Please visit their website, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flickr and lets see if we can get the conversation growing!

Ha det!!

K*