Presented by Incubation Lab: A Google for Nonprofits Station Diary, Part 1

The Presented by Incubation Lab series presents a multi-post series about one station's journey into the world of Google for Nonprofits . Teresa Peltier, Emerging Media & PR Specialist for dual-licensee WSKG in New York, shares their story with us:

Recently, a co-worker passed along a story about Google for Nonprofits. After a quick perusal of the offerings, I decided to submit an application for WSKG. Here’s the really awesome story of how it went:

March 18th, 2011
Emails from co-workers often include pictures of babies and raps about NPR. But today, I got this:

Faith in humanity – restored.

March 28th, 2011
Spent some time looking through Google for Nonprofits today. Here are some reasons I got excited:

  • Google AdWords will provide grants (up to $10,000 per month) for adword advertising on Google searches for approved 501(c3) organizations.
  • Google Apps offered free for Nonprofits with less than 3000 employees and at a discount for Nonprofits with more than 3000 employees
  • Access to premium YouTube features: branding, overlays, increased uploading capacity, donate button, inclusion in Nonprofits channel and video pages, call-to-action overlays
  • Software grants and support for Google’s mapping technology, Google Earth Outreach
  • Google Checkout – no transaction fees

April 1st, 2011
My boss, Caroline Basso (Director of Development and Marketing), and I sat down for a bit to look through the site. Primarily, we looked at cost, as well as at ease of applying and using the tools. Some staff members already use Gmail and other Google services, thereby shortening the learning curve should they get involved. We love the possibility of cross-departmental projects; in particular, working with the Television production team to improve our YouTube channel and exploring the Google Checkout feature with our Membership and Sales teams.

After some discussion, we submitted our application today. Google makes application very easy - the application is free, and it requires a Google Account, plus your 501(c3)’s EIN. Once approved, several offered tools are free, and a few more are offered at discount.

So now we’ll wait for approval from Google.

April 18th, 2011
Still waiting for confirmation…

May 23rd, 2011
Finally approved! It took almost two months for Google to approve our application.

In the next few weeks, we’ll begin to look at the tools in more depth, starting with their Maps API Premier tools, Google Grants and YouTube, and discussing how we might use them.

After a preliminary glance, there seems to be a varying degree of effort and detail required to “enroll” in the tools – for example, they warn that Google Grants can take 2-4 hours to enroll in, where as the YouTube tool requires only a YouTube Account ID. Moreover, some enroll forms come with the following – “Please note that the average account review turnaround time is 2-4 weeks” (there is an option to enroll in and work with some products before receiving Google’s approval, but we decided to wait).

The Presented by Incubation Lab Blog Series tackles the digital media topics that matter to stations, while highlighting and celebrating the online efforts of stations. These regular profiles of products, people and trends can provide you with inspiration and potential collaborators for your own projects.

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