Revised with new information as of January 11, 2011

Solicitations for Participation: OVERLOAD!

I wrote this back in 2005. And I'm sorry to say that nothing has changed:

The proliferation of various online publications, portals, databases, blogs and conferences relating to nonprofits and technology or volunteerism seems endless. So does the proliferation of solicitations for stories and presentations.

I am a strong advocate for staff at nonprofits, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), community organizations, government agencies focused on community services, and other mission-based organizations, to submit articles and information for publications outside their own organizations, as well as for their participation as presenters at conferences both on and offline. These activities create credibility for the individual and the organization or initiative he or she represents, help get the word out to a broader audience about good things the organization is up to, add to the organization's reputation as a collaborator, and so forth.

That said... many of us are on submit a story or please present at our conference or please write a blog for usoverload. I get a solicitation at least TWICE a week (in 2005, it was only once a week) from a representative of a portal, publication, blog or conference to submit a story or create a presentation, and many of my colleagues have reported the same.

If your online publication or portal or blog solicits stories or other information from others outside of your organization, or, if you are going to hold an online event and need people from outside your organization to participate as presenters, consider people's shrinking availability, their own on-the-job priorities, and the increasing number of competitive offers they receive. You should consider what incentives you can offer to make it worth a person's time to contribute to your online publication, portal or workshop, including:

See more resources re: Outreach & Engagement, With and Without Technology

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