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Joey Martin

Consultant, Technical Design Services

Joey Martin, Senior Project Manager  

Joey formally worked with large multi-chapter/affiliate non-profits as a Lead Project Manager, she recently transitioned to the Technical Design team as a consultant helping Convio clients solve their business and technical problems using Convio products. She has worked at Convio for over four years.

When she isn’t at work you can find Joey at a dog park with the best looking dog ever or out enjoying all that Austin has to offer.

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Too Soon?

Posted by Joey Martin at Jun 24, 2010 02:51 PM CDT
Categories: Fundraising

The year is almost halfway over and it is never too soon to begin planning and executing your end of year fundraising strategy.  Here are some questions to get you started and a suggested timeline to follow in the coming months.


  • How are we going to ask for end of year gifts?
  • Who are we going to ask for end of year gifts?
  • What is our budget for an end of year campaign(s)?
  • How are we going to thank our donors for giving to us in 2010?
  • How does end of year fundraising fit in with our overall communication plan, other campaigns and/or events?


July: Analysis & Planning
1. Review & analyze campaigns from years past - What worked and what didn't?
2. Create or review your budget
3. Determine your top three priorities for this years' end of year campaign(s)
4. Decide what methods you will use both online and offline - mobile, direct mail, email, social media etc.
5. Create a task list and timeline
6. Begin gathering content
7. Determine if you need graphic design, web production, printing etc. work that will require going outside your organization - identify what vendors you will need and notify them of your plans.

August: Audience & Content
1. Outline your approach for this year by audience (Event Participants, Major Donors, Frequent Donors etc.) and method (direct mail, email etc.)
2. Craft your message(s)
3. Scope work with vendors
3. Purchase any URLs, keywords, Google Ads etc.

September: Finalize Content
1. Complete all copy and graphics
2. Create online donation form(s)
3. Create email(s)
4. Post content online
5. Test, test and re-test all online forms and emails
5. Finalize offline materials

October: Special Invites 
1. Get your board and volunteers involved - send them emails/information they can easily forward along
2. Let your frequent donors in early by asking them to start the ball rolling to meet your end of year goals
3. Start using social media to create buzz about your campaign(s)

November & December: Monitor & Maintain 
1. Update online content often so it is fresh
2. Monitor your progress and change your tactics as needed
3. Plan for a big end of year push between Christmas and New Years
4. Have a place (like Google Docs) where you and your team can record thoughts for next year - what to change and what to keep

For further reading check out A Procrastinator’s Guide to Year-End Fundraising created by Sea Change Strategies and Care2.

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Don't Click This Link

Posted by Joey Martin at Jun 01, 2010 10:27 AM CDT
Categories: Content Management, Usability

In the June edition of  Wired magazine there is a fascinating article about how the web is changing the structure of our brains. The article was adapted from the book The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains by Nicholas Carr.

You can guess by the title of the book Carr surmises that the internet is not promoting deep thinking on singular topics but rather skimming the surface of multiple subject matters. And to prove his argument I am not going to go into the details of the article, ha! Instead here are some of the theories outlined that I believe are good considerations for planning, designing and/or writing for your site.

  • The internet promotes scanning not reading = Limit the amount of text
  • The internet is distracting and interrupting = Limit distractions on your site and in text
  • Links disrupt concentration and decrease comprehension whether or not readers click on them = Limit the use of links
  • Amount of information we scan while surfing exceeds our ability to process it =  Write in a clear and concise manner
  • We desire new information even if it is inconsequential = Update your site often, use twitter and blogs to push new content

Make your site an oasis in the sea of information by creating a design and content that is relevant, fresh and succinct.  And get a subscription to Wired if you don’t have one already.  

Carr, Nicolas. “Chaos Theory.”Wired. June 2010: 112+

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10 Commandments of User Experience

Posted by Joey Martin at Mar 21, 2010 07:28 PM CDT
Categories: Usability

Raina Van Cleave and Nick Finck  gave a very informative and succinct presentation on what characterizes a great end user experience. They summed up the qualities of great design into 10 Commandments - these commandments aren’t written in stone however but when designing your web presence thou shalt: 
1.  Design to the User – they are always right
Don't focus on your needs as an organization. We typically design from the inside out (data > logic > user experience) rather than from the outside in (user experience > logic > data)
2. Understand the User
Determine the personas who are interested in your organization and how they are engaging with the site.  This should be advocated throughout organization and doesn't have to be a document could be life-size cut outs.
3. Avoid solutioneering
Identify and fully understand the problems
4. Design with form following function
What is your primary function?
What is your focus?
What functions are secondary?
What are your edge cases? (Acknowledge that they are edge cases and don't design to those.)
5.  Understand that content is king
Design is about communication
95% of your web users aren't reading 80% of your content, they are scanning and looking for something in particular.This doesn't mean your content isn't import it means it is really important!
Use headings, bullet points, lists, tables where needed and other design elements to communicate your message
6. Innovate do not imitate
Example Nike+ - Nike didn’t just add their logo to a pedometer they created a new product that captures information that enables those to capture data on their runs and even participate in a virtual race  - The Human Race 10k.
They designed a new and better pedometer and added extra community behind it to make the Nike+ a true innovation that became more than just a pedometer.
7. Access is for everyone
Keep in mind everyone's needs for example: be ADA compliant, think about if children visit your site, and what various backgrounds and cultures make up your audience
Don’t forget about mobile - large screen vs. small screen
8. Plan before you design Winchester House
Don’t make your website into an online example of the Winchester Mystery House.  The Winchester House the Victorian mansion in San Jose that was built onto constantly with no planning because of belief in a curse that if the building stopped haunting would begin. The house is an eccentric collection of oddities, staircases that went to ceilings, windows that opened up inside.
How many websites just tack on new features without any regard to planning?
9. Understand the goal
How easy is the first time a person visits?
How quickly can they perform that task again when they come back?
What errors are encountered?
If your website could just do ONE thing what would that be?
10. Learn from failure
What has worked for your organization in the past, but more importantly what hasn’t worked.

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Make your cause more like Austin, Texas

Posted by Joey Martin at Mar 13, 2010 06:51 PM CST
Categories: Social Media

Greetings from Austin Texas

If you have visited Austin, Texas you may recall that we love to talk about Austin.  There is something special about this town. The first session I attended at SXSW Interactive was 'Why Austin is the Killer App'  moderated by Heather McKissick and Bijoy Goswami the founders of Austin Equation.

Austin Equation is trying to determine the ingredients that make Austin so extraordinary and the equation they have come up with is Experience + Community = Scene. They theorize that multiple vibrant scenes in an accepting environment are what make Austin remarkable.  I believe that you can apply this equation to non-profits and cultivate a fan base as devoted to your cause as Austinites are devoted to preserving the uniqueness that is Austin, Texas.


A recent study by Ryan Howell touts that experience makes people happier than possessions, and that we would rather participate than purchase.

What kinds of experiences can you/do you offer your constituents that relate to your cause? 
How can you make your events, volunteer days etc. unique, relevant and special for those who participate?
How do can you promote the community aspect of your events? 
What sorts of activities help facilitate a sense of community?


What sort of social currency can you trade with your constituents or can your constituents trade between each other? How can you facilitate that?
What tools are out there for you to organize your constituents or for your constituents to organize others around experiences/events related to your cause?
How can you use Twitter, Facebook and other online tools to foster a community related to your cause?
What content is needed to build a community around your cause?

Community feeds experience and experience feeds community. Create a scene around your cause and you might be able to get as many evangelists as Austin, well maybe… this town is pretty great. 

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SXSW Web Awards

Posted by Joey Martin at Mar 16, 2009 04:14 PM CDT
Categories: NPtech

The 12th annual SXSW Web Awards took place last night and Convio had a table for the ceremony which was filled with co-workers and clients.  The emcee Baratunde Thurston was quite entertaining, he kept the awards moving at a fast pace with a couple of hilarious interludes (love me some Onion). Fun times were had by all, the only thing I was missing that evening was a clean ironic t-shirt to wear.

The event was presented by Adobe and Convio was the sponsor of the Activism category.  Check out the some of the winners from the evening:

Activism: Tweet Congress

Blog: Bygone Bureau

Community: Lost Zombies – This site also won the People’s Choice Award

Education: The Cycle

Experimental: We Tell Stories – This site also won Best of Show

Browse the complete list of the finalists to see what some of the most creative web designers were up to in 2008.

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