The Rotary Club of Waterloo Uses Social Media as a Critical Link in Their Supply Chain

Jason    June 24, 2014

Rotary Waterloo

Organization Name: The Rotary Club of Waterloo

Industry: Non Profit Service Club

Name of Contact: Dr. John Wahl, President

Non profit groups have limited resources.  The Rotary Club of Waterloo delivers amazing events that provide funds to help the community.  Saving money on the delivery of these events means more money for those in need.

Social media fulfills three crucial links in the supply chain:

  1. Public Ambassador and Public Relations Assistant
  2. Scheduler and Organizer
  3. Archivist

Let’s take a closer look at each of these three areas.

Public Ambassador and Public Relations Assistant

Part of the goal of any non-profit group is to spread the word.  This can be expensive.  For the largest fundraiser the club delivers, President John Wahl explains:

The Golf “Fore” KidsAbility Classic is the major annual fundraiser of the Rotary Club of Waterloo.  We provide funds to help the staff at KidsAbility enable every child they treat to reach the goal of “Potential Realized”. Social media allows the message about our tournament, and the work that is being done at KidsAbility, reach a much larger audience.

One of the Facebook posts about this event reached 2,390 people.  This may explain why 98% of non profit groups use Facebook.

FB Reach Rotary

Twitter also played a large role in marketing the campaign.  In previous years, the image (below) was only used in a postcard.  Social media allowed this virtual postcard to reach a new audience (without the mailing charges!)

Rotary Twitter

Social Media as Club Scheduler and Organizer

Doodle was used in place of valuable volunteer administration time.  Instead of having a volunteer physically phone and work out a schedule for everyone, a few clicks of a mouse were all that was needed.  Doodle allowed club members to load their availability and streamline the whole process.  The time that was saved could be used to call on potential sponsors and ask for donations.  Indeed, this is a better used of precious volunteer hours.

doodle calendar

Social Media as Club Archivist

It is important to preserve event details so that they may be showcased for members reference, as well as an opportunity to show new members past events.  In the past, the delivery of archived events would take the place of physical photo albums and paper that someone would have to spend time and resources on creating.  Now, it is on social media sharing sites.  Here is an example from a recent Rotary Club of Waterloo event that is archived on YouTube:

Lessons for Others

Delivering a successful fundraiser requires innovation, if you don’t have unlimited time (and clearly we are all stretched for time these days!)  Using social media tools allows service groups to maximize their time.  The delivery of fundraising events just got a lot easier, faster and less expensive…thanks to social media tools.

As a final word, listen to Julie Dixon’s Padcast to hear of the added bonus of using Social Media for your Non Profit Organization.  You will learn that the effort you extend to use social media to assist in your supply chain will pay dividends in yet another way: your supporters will be able to engage friends, peers and family to help your non profit group’s cause.  It’s a win-win.

Submitted by: Jason Jackson, University of Waterloo

Author Contact:

If you have concerns as to the accuracy of anything posted on this site please send your concerns to Peter Carr, Programme Director

Web References:





Georgetown University’s Center for Social Impact Communication

Inbound Marketing Article