Presentation on theme: "Websites for Conservation Groups by Peter Cooper Rimutaka Forest Park Trust."— Presentation transcript:
Websites for Conservation Groups by Peter Cooper Rimutaka Forest Park Trust
Title: Promoting your conservation project effectively on the World Wide Web Description: This workshop is aimed at helping conservation project personnel to appreciate the substantial benefits a dedicated website can bring to their promotional efforts. In non- technical terms it will cover such practical issues as: Getting started – what you need – a step by step guide Simple web design principles for persuasive and engaging conservation sites Accessing top-quality, inexpensive (or free) web-hosting services locally Using the Internet to reduce administrative costs, recruit volunteers and woo sponsors
Webmaster and committee member for Rimutaka Forest Park Charitable Trust ISP (Internet Service Provider) and Web designer since 1994 Former eCommerce Solutions Manager for US multinational Graduate of Wellington Teacher’s College, but ended up specialising in adult Training & Development/ O.D. Fell in love with computers & software whilst working with Exxon subsidiary, Gilbarco, in Sydney in the early 1980s (it’s been downhill ever since – my latest mistress is a laptop!!) Since returning to EnZed after 30 years of globe-trotting abroad, I have indulged my life-long passion for tramping and the great outdoors by getting involved with local conservation groups and restoration efforts
It’s not hard to do It costs very little The rewards and cost savings can be enormous The visibility of your organisation’s goals & aspirations can be greatly enhanced It’s a great way to secure volunteers It makes it easier for you to raise funds, gain grants and receive donations
It’s the most cost-effective form of publicity Unlike a brochure, a website works for your Cause 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and has global reach It’s a great way to give recognition to your “heroes & helpers” It’s a terrific way to disseminate your brochures, application forms and press releases, etc.
iracy lagiarism ornography aedophiles redators (including terrorists) arental anxiety rivacy invasion (AKA Identity theft) (Let’s not forget those other scourges; Phishing, Spyware, Spam, Trojans and Viruses!!)
& Instant Messaging WWW, Blogs & RSS feeds Voice Over Internet Protocol P2P file sharing, Intranets, VPNs, WANs Superb resource for homework/ research/ supplier & competitor analysis Internet Banking Online Trading/ eCommerce Low-cost distributed/ grid computing Online maps, training, gaming, radio, TV, Video on Demand, eDating, Comprehensive, up-to-the-minute weather forecasts, traffic & news reports and sports results Another media-rich channel for marketing our conservation causes Unprecedented access to Government and Local Body records and services Cheaper, faster, better ways of billing our customers, keeping them informed of our products and services/ special offers, etc. Instant online reservations and bookings for flights, accommodation and other travel arrangements Access to the latest books, software, tech- toys and movies/ TV shows/ music etc. - often for free - or at a huge discount from retail How the Internet has permanently changed the way we do most things these days
The “Killer Combo” – Browsers & the W.W.W. Allowing distributed computing and online communications & global collaboration, trading and eCommerce The “Killer Application” – Bringing about the demise of telex/ facsimiles/ snail mail, etc. because of its superior benefits: Immediacy, low cost, flexibility, utility, ease of use The “Killer Network Protocol” – TCP/IP Where have all those expensive, old proprietary protocols gone? The “Killer Research Tool” – Search Engines Google, LiveSearch, Yahoo, AltaVista, Excite, etc. The “Telecoms’ Domination Killers” – VoIP, Instant Messaging, VPNs Voice over Internet Protocol, Skype, Virtual Private Networks, WANs, etc. The “Killer File Formats” ZIP, TAR, JPEG, GIF, MPEG, MP3, PDF, HTML, XML, DHTML,CSS, etc.
Don’t spend tens of thousands on a Yellow Pages Ad, or print-media, radio or TV advertisements unless you are also promoting your website URL on it!!! Web hosting is super cheap in EnZed – you can get 10 megs of space and full services from as little as $1pw It is easy to design, build and maintain your own website if you have the time & inclination, a computer and access to the Internet – and, it’s a lot of fun! If you don’t have the skills or inclination, get someone who has to do it for you, then teach you how to update and maintain it, ongoing Intelligent use of the Internet allows you to maximise publicity and minimise your administrative costs – Depending on the size of your organisation, you can save thousands of dollars annually on billing, postage, printing, advertising, telephone bills, facsimile paper, travel, banking and customer service costs, simply by getting your Internet act together! Standing out from the crowd
Clear content Simple messages (K.I.S.S.) Attractive, logically-structured presentation Easy to follow navigation scheme Designed from the ground up with search engines and prospective visitors’ queries in mind Constant revision and updating of the site to encourage repeat visits and better search engine rankings Constant promotion of your website address in everything you do/ all of your marketing efforts Honour your “Heroes and Helpers” Celebrate your successes and “manage” your public relations
Choices: - D.I.Y. or bring in the pros? Consider sponsorship Consider the use of a Content Management System such as Joomla! or Mambo Choose an attractive existing Cascading Style Sheet (CSS). You can download them from the ‘Net or create your own from scratch. Plan the content and navigation structure of your website meticulously. Flow charts are very helpful planning tools in this regard Applying the K.I.S.S. principle is vital, intially at least!
Don’t make it too flashy! Avoid reliance on 3 rd party add-ins/ media players Optimise your images so they download faster Don’t skimp on disk space Set a moderate target screen resolution – say 1024 by 768 – as opposed to 640 by 480 (too low) or 1600 by 1200 (too high) Avoid coloured text on a dark background and garish colour schemes in general…
Choose a web host – ask your current ISP first, but be prepared to shop around Low-cost, high-quality web-hosting services are available in New Zealand at very competitive rates Key choices to make revolve around: Disk space allowance (Do you need 10 megabytes or 100 megabytes initially?) Traffic allowance (Gigabytes/ month) Web server capabilities to match your production requirements (e.g. PHP/ MySQL or ASP, FrontPage Extensions, services etc.) Site administration services and statistics monitoring
Register a Domain Name Examples: rimutakatrust.org.nz, savethekiwi.org.nz Consider.com;.org.nz;.co.nz; etc. according to the focus & structure of your conservation organization Choose a Web Host Example: KiwiWebHost offers $1 a week full-service hosting for 10mb space, 5 addresses + 1Gb traffic/ month Your local council may offer free hosting for eligible entities Create a web site DIY or professionally designed Consider sponsorship and/or secure specific funding grant to get you started. Ongoing annual costs are relatively low
Update your site often Maintain ongoing interest in your site & conservation efforts by frequently changing or updating your content to encourage return visits Use maps, graphics, cool photos, news releases and consider “Blogs” Publicise constantly Put your domain name and primary address on all of your literature, correspondence, signage and press releases Constantly and shamelessly promote your website to all who will listen! Exploit the Internet Take advantage of the enormous cost savings that the Internet offers Put all of your brochures, newsletters, membership application forms, donation & sponsorship forms, administrative forms etc. online
Site visits and traffic have built steadily over the past year – Last month we had over 22,200 “hits” and thousands of visitors from all around the world It costs us less than $200 a year to maintain It is updated every month and sometimes more frequently We plan to expand it to encompass more of our operations