Contemporary Social Media:
Facebook and Twitter
F or more than 35 years, Juana Guzman has served as a nationally acclaimed consultant, manager, fundraising and earned income specialist to non-profit organizations, museums, corporate and philanthropic sectors throughout the United States. Throughout her career, Ms. Guzman has championed the promotion and preservation of the arts, culture, heritage and as a catalyst for diverse American populations. Since 1980, Ms. Guzman has developed and implemented strategies that focused on organizational capacity building, community engagement, strategic and cultural planning, diversity training in the workplace, entrepreneurialism, fundraising in the public and private sectors, creative place-making and place-keeping in diverse communities of color, tourism lead by diverse communities, as well as facility development initiatives for non-profit organizations. In 2012, Ms. Guzman left her position of 13 years as the Vice-President of the National Museum of Mexican Arts (NMMA) in Chicago, the largest accredited Latino arts institution, to start her own company I Juana Know Inc., with a focus on enhanced revenue and diverse fundraising strategies for creative markets, organizational capacity building, technical assistance advisor to non-profit organizations and creative place-making/creative place-keeping. Ms. Guzman previously served as the Director of Community Cultural Development for the City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA) for 18 years. During her tenure at the DCA she was responsible for innovative economic initiatives that focused on providing strategic planning and earned income development in support of Chicago’s most diverse and underserved communities.
Issues in Social Media for Arts Organizations
Thinking back in 1990’s when I was serving as the Director of Community Cultural Development for the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs (CDCA), I can remember when the World Wide Web first came out. Social media was just in its infancy with few options available. However, in 1993 I learned about a group of artists that held a conference at Orcas Island, Seattle in 1988 to discuss new ways of supporting artists. It was there that an artist and art administrator Anne Focke came up with the idea for Arts Wire, a virtual place for arts ideas.
While at the CDCA, I was keenly interested in learning more about Arts Wire and sought the assistance of Joe Matuzak, a poet from Ann Arbor, Michigan who eventually took over Arts Wire and met his colleague, poet Judy Malloy, from Northern California. My goal was to connect a partnership I created in 1993 which was comprised of 25 diverse community-based non-profit arts organizations. The Chicago Coalition of Community Cultural Centers (CCCCC) included dynamic arts groups such as ETA Creative Arts Foundation Theater, Indian American Center, National Mexican Fine Arts (formerly the Mexican Art Center), and Swedish American Center. I felt it was crucial for these art organizations to have access to the World Wide Web, allowing them to connect with their peers and increase opportunities and visibility for their communities and local artists.
Since that time, Social Media has exploded into a thousand options and platforms, from Facebook, YouTube, Whatsapp, Instagram, Link-in and so much more. Just about every artist, arts worker and arts organization I know has a social media presence in one form or other. However, arts organizations still faced the same problem I first encountered in 1993, a sustainable source of funding that allows them to secure permanent technical staff, the ability to optimize their websites and increase their social media presence. Technology is expensive. While Social Media has increased opportunities for arts organizations to be more visible, diverse arts organizations -- small to mid-size -- continue to struggle to keep up with social media opportunities, especially those rooted in communities. Arts organizations need to be able to increase their audiences and actively engage with their supporters, capture data, develop a broader donor base and increase their earned income opportunities.
I believe these are among some of the issues impacting arts organizations when it comes to social media.
Transcript of Juana Guzman's Twitter conversation
Images of the tweets are used in this transcript.