The Long Snail

first_imgAt Network for Good, the charitable giving portal where I work, we recently undertook a study of $100 million in online giving to 23,000 charities. We found all kinds of cool things available here, but one of the most intriguing was that we were a long tail. As we said in our research:The “long tail” phenomenon – a term devised by Wired Editor Chris Anderson to describe how the Internet creates and serves long-tailed distribution markets – is evident at Network for Good when numbers of donations are charted by organization. At Network for Good, 50% the donations go to 1% of charities (excluding crisis giving). The rest is spread out along the long tail. Just as Amazon and Google have enabled consumers to access products and information that meets their particular needs and interests by providing one-stop access to many, diverse choices, Network for Good has enabled donors to contribute to many, diverse nonprofits by putting a fragmented nonprofit “market” in one place. In other words, there are supporters for every cause, no matter how small. That’s great for Network for Good, but if you’re on the long tail, how else can you reach people than just waiting for them to find you on Network for Good? Here’s some good advice. In addition, try going to Meetup and type in your zip and focus. You’ll find people meeting in your area to talk about your issue. They are already hanging out on the long tail of Meetup, waiting to meet your organization, which also sits on the long tail.Too bad we’re SO SLOW to do this in our sector (hence the “long snail,” the title of Network for Good CEO Bill Strathmann’s recent talk on the topic). Hurry and work your tail right now. It’s never been easier to find the people out there in the fragmented but limitless online “marketplace.”last_img