Results for category "Hillel"

11 Articles

Recruit for Taglit-Birthright With a Simple Photo Contest

Taglit-Birthright Israel recruitment is almost here and when coupled with the start of the semester, it can be a hectic time of year. Planning welcome back events, Shabbat dinners and intern trainings can get in the way. In this post, I’ll share a way to use your trip alumni and students to help recruit new trip participants.

Start with contacting your Birthright alumni and asking them to send you a photo of their favorite Taglit-Birthright moment. Mention that the photos will be added to an album once the submission process is over and you will add your logo and the link to register.

I’d suggest offering an incentive for the photo with the most likes, but also offer an incentive for the alumnus who can recruit the most friends.

Uploading the photos

Once you have added text to your photos, upload them to an album on your Facebook page. After the photos have been uploaded, send a link to the album to those who submitted photos.

Send the email the day before registration opens, so social shares will coincide with when folks can actually register.

You can also include a parameter that in addition to sending in a photo, entries will need to include a quote or caption to be included with the photo.

The included text will hopefully identify with students who haven’t gone on the trip. An example would be…

“The best part about Taglit-Birthright Israel is the views” – Adam G.
Register for this FREE 10 day trip to Israel at This trip is a gift from Taglit-Birthright Israel.

free israel trip

This is a really easy way of turning your Taglit-Birthright alumni into your marketing team. They will be incentivized to get their friends to like their photo because of the contest prize. I call it motivation marketing. They’ll hopefully participate because you have a relationship with them.

More Marketing for Taglit-Birthright

It may be time-consuming, but as you begin to receive registrants, try calling them and personally asking them to share your registration link. You can suggest they post on Facebook…

I just registered for a FREE 10-day trip to Israel. You should too! Register at to join me this winter in Israel.

The Beauty of Facebook and Groups of Friends

When friends within the same “real life” social circles share the same link, Facebook groups those posts together, which may get the attention of others on the fringe of those social circles. The more sharing, the more News Feed stories it creates, and the better off you will be.

Need Help?

If recruiting for this free 10 day trip to Isreal seems daunting, you may need some extra help. SociallyGold can assist you with your Taglit-Birthright marketing campaign with consulting, image editing and more.

Contact me if you’d like to learn more about how I can help.




More Ways to Recruit for Taglit-Birthright Using Social Media

taglit-birthight social media

Last year I wrote an article about how to effectively use social media to recruit for Taglit-Birthright, the free 10-day trip to Israel for Jews between 18-26. Today, I hosted a 1-hour training for the University of Texas Hillel and came up with even more ways.



Flappy Bird Parody Ad

Flappy Bird, the addicting iPhone game that has the internet buzzing and users frustrated makes for a perfect parody video. As of Sunday, February 9, 2014, you can no longer download it from the app store.

Here is the idea…

The first shot is of a few students who look like they are frustrated and playing Flappy Bird. The next shot, someone walks in and asks if they are playing the addicting game, and comments on how difficult it is. Little does the audience know, but they aren’t playing Flappy Bird, they are trying to sign-up for the trip before registration opens, which has them Flappy Bird frustrated. This is a good way to promote when registration opens. It also can be a 30 second video, which is easy to consume.

High social capital

I always encourage Hillels that I work with to find students who have high social capital. What do I mean? A student with high social capital is in numerous groups on campus. Perhaps they are in student government and in a fraternity/sorority. Students with high social capital will help your message spread faster.

Hashtag Photo Contest

Create a unique hashtag and have your students share photos from their trip to Israel using that hashtag. Publishing a photo and using the hashtag can enter them into a contest to win X. The contest provides an incentive for students to participate, but it also gives you metrics to measure your participation year over year. Make an effort to increase the number of hashtag uses on an ongoing basis. Also, don’t forget to encourage contest participants to post the link to register with their post.

Israel Photo booth and fill in the blank

Incentives will be key to your success with this one. Set up a photo booth with a giant cutout of an old Polaroid photo (Example in the slideshare above). When someone stops by your booth, ask to take the picture using their phone, so they can immediately share it. Encourage them to tag you as well. You’ll see huge growth in your page by doing this.

At the bottom of the photo, put the phrase “I love _________ about Israel.” When they share the photo, they can add what they love about Israel. Their friends will start to chime in too.

Post a countdown

“Registration starts in x days”. Get your fans hyped with engaging photos and a countdown to the day that they can register for the trip. Keep a wait list so students can provide their emails prior to registration opening.

Grass Roots Ideas

Encourage Responses via email and text

Post a question on your page with a multiple choice options. I love ________ about Israel. A. Humus B. Camels C. Tel-Aviv and D. Other (user-generated favorite). Have a few students start the answering and have them text or email their friends to respond to the question as well. There is no reason that you have to rely on organic responses, feel free to force it a little. You can also enter commenters into a contest if you want to encourage more responses.

Cover and Profile Photos

Ask users to change their Facebook profile and cover photos to promote registration. The ideal size for profile images is 180×180 and cover photos are 751×315.

These are just a few ideas to recruit for Taglit-Birthright using social media. If you enjoyed this article please share it.


I Mustache You for an Instagram Contest

Launching your Instagram account with a contest is a great way to gain exposure, especially if you require entrants to follow your account to be able to win.

Do you have a website or blog? You can also curate the entries there using Snapwidget! A free widget that will put all images from a username or hashtag on your website automatically. Automatically? Yes! Automatically! I’m working with Texas Hillel on their social strategy and will encourage them to use this widget to engage their audience and grow their social media presence.

Pro Tip: Instead of posting all the images for your contest on the Instagram account you are trying to grow, encourage entrants to use their own Instagram account to enter. This will help your account grow even faster. 

Have any questions about Instagram contests or how to use Snapwidget? Scroll down and put your Qs in the comments. Also, take a look at the awesome mustaches!

Virginia Tech Hillel Leadership Dinner Recap

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Last night I was invited by Virginia Tech Hillel to speak at their 9th annual Leadership Dinner. The event was sponsored by Virginia Tech Hillel and Ask Big Questions at Virginia Tech. The theme of my presentation was leadership and how student organizations can better use social media to communicate with their members. In addition to the training, I met with individuals and showed them better email techniques, how to create and update blog posts as well as how to optimize websites for social media sharing.

I used my oh so favorite Prezi to present.

Like this article? Please share it on Facebook!

My presentation lasted an hour and I fielded questions from the audience and on Twitter using the hashtag #CreativeLeadership.

The audience had great questions.

Q: How do you access Twitter Lists from your mobile device? 

A: Twitter Lists can be accessed by going to the “Me” tab at the bottom of the app and scrolling down. Check out my article on Twitter Lists if you would like to learn more.

Q: I’ve never clicked on an advertisement on the side of Facebook, why do companies purchase the ad space?

A: Companies do spend a lot of money on advertising. Facebook has billions of users and it lets advertisers target them based on their profiles. Even if you don’t click on the sidebar ads, advertisers count on those ads for brand recognition.

Need Social Media Help?


Q: How do you combat information overload? We want to get our message out, but it’s hard to compete with everything else.

A: Information overload is a tough hurdle, but if you make a conscious effort to produce top quality content, your updates will jump out at your audience. Users are on social media to be social and engage with friends and family. Keep that in mind when creating your content. You don’t need to post for the sake of posting. Only craft an update when you have something meaningful that will make the lives of your fans better.

Q: If your organization has niche groups, is there way to associate them on Twitter and Facebook.

A: There is not a direct way to associate niche Twitter accounts or Facebook Pages with a main account. If you are looking to create multiple accounts for your organization, I would advise against it. It can be difficult to manage multiple accounts and you run the risk of having a dead page over time. You also run the risk of forgetting or loosing the login information.

Learn even more about the topics I covered.

. The Twitter @ Reply Trick to Increase Your Following

. Use Eventbrite to get accurate event RSVPs

. Facebook Group vs Person vs Page

. Use Facebook Insights to learn about your audience

. The Facebook Character Limit

. Facebook Image Dimensions

. How to resize the new Facebook Event Cover Photo

Have more questions? Email me at or tweet me at @socially_gold

Like this article? Please share it on Facebook!

5 Reasons to attend the VT Hillel Leadership Dinner

Untitled-1 Where else can you eat Panera for only $5?


4  It’s easier than making dinner


3 You can network with people in other clubs and organizations


2 Your new-found social media knowledge can help you spruce up your online dating account



 It can help you find a job!

There is still time to sign up for the 9th annual Hillel at Virginia Tech Leadership Dinner. RSVP at

Social Media Training For Hillels


 The social media training program will train either a Social Media & Marketing Intern or a staff member how to use social media effectively to enhance Hillel’s mission.


Why should you sign up?

. Learn to engage your audience with social media
. Give a student or staff professional development
. Provide leadership opportunities to students/staff
. Boost your social media presence
. Develop the skills of your marketing intern or staff member

What’s Covered?

. Social media audit
. Discussion of social media time management
. Assistance in developing a social media strategy
. Insight into little known social media facts
. Working with Pinterest to engage students, parents and donors
. Employing social media media to recruit for Taglit-Birthright
. Analysis of social media for informed marketing decisions
. Using social media for accurate event RSVPs
. Highlight of 3rd party tools that enhance a social media strategy
. Additional topics as chosen by participants

Note: You can choose either an online or an in-person training program. The program add-ons are intended to enhance the training and may be purchased for an additional fee.


The Trainings

Online Social Media Training – $125 per training*

 – This program includes…

. Online group-training session via Google Hangout. Maximum of 9 participants

*Minimum of 3 trainings must be purchased. If you would like to inquire about purchasing more or less trainings, contact

- In Person Social Media Training – $500 + travel and accommodations

 This program includes…

. One 2 hour weekend training session at your Hillel


Program Add-Ons

 The program add-ons are intended to supplement and enhance the training and may be purchased in addition to either program.

 Success Coaching


. Includes four 45-minute consultation sessions throughout the semester.

. SociallyGold will monitor progress and provide feedback during the semester.

Effective Email Communication


. Includes1-hour initial consultation
. Four 30-minute consultation sessions throughout the semester
. Includes an analysis of current email efforts
. Email Design and implementation
. Subscriber list building techniques

Blog Management


. Includes 4 blog posts a month as needed based on pictures and bullet points provided by client
. Content geared towards optimizing subscriber list
. Great for communication with donors, parents and students

 Referral Program

If you refer a new participant to the program, you will receive a $100 donation back to your organization.

Interested in the Social Media Training Program?

Fill out the contact form below

Effectively Recruit for Taglit-Birthright Using Social Media

Taglit-Birthright Israel offers a free 10 day trip to Israel for Jews between the ages of 18-26 who have never been on a peer group trip previously. There are two big recruiting seasons, one in the spring and one in the fall. Social media can be used as a recruitment tool for this amazing trip, but are you using effectively? You know it’s Birthright season when all of your friends an colleagues are posting about the Free 10-Day Trip to Israel. When I was working for Hillel of Broward and Palm Beach, my Israel fellow and I came up with an idea called “Picture Yourself in Israel” to help us with recruitment.

SEE ALSO: Add Friends to Facebook Lists to segment your posts and not annoy your friends.

I wrote an article for eJewishPhilanthopy about how to engage Jewish Millennials on and off line, which included details of our Birthright campaign. We took pictures of students and our graphic design intern Photoshopped their heads on bodies, either on camels or in the dead sea. We placed those pictures in an album on Facebook called “Picture Yourself in Israel”. We offered a prize for the picture that got the most Likes.

We tabled outside of Hillel for our “Picture Yourself In Israe” campaign with a camera and a clipboard. We let students pick the picture they wanted their head to be photoshopped on. The student in the blurred out image above happened to see the album on Facebook and asked to participate without our prompting. It may be hard to see, but she is also wearing a fake mustache that I had at my desk.

You’ll notice that we added a blurb to the bottom of the picture which had our tagline and website on it. This student happened to be in a sorority and used her wide social network to get this Liked so many times. How do I know that this technique worked? I don’t. We didn’t track to see how many registrants signed up because of this picture. My advice is to use is use tracking sites like or which will create trackable links for you.

You should also be deliberate about asking how they heard about your trip during the interview process. The above mentioned tracking websites will give you a sense as to how many people clicked on the link. You can use that information to determine when the best time to post is. Perhaps it’s during the day, or at night. Maybe sundays work better for you. The best time to post varies by audience.

It’s easy to post memes about Birthright recruitment, but are you measuring how effective you are? Facebook provides Insights which also shows you how many Likes, Shares and Comments your posts get in addition to other data points.

I do have to give a shout out to Hillel of Broward and Palm Beach this recruiting season for creating a meme that made me actually laugh out loud.

Do you have an effective way of recruiting for Birthright using social media? Let us know in the comments.

Other Birthright Marketing Ideas:

Birthright Apple iPad commercial

Ask students who have been to Israel before to help recruit! 


The University of Texas Hillel Birthright Recruitment Video!


Taglit-Birthright may have their own rules regarding how you market their free 10 Day Trip to Israel. It is important to make sure you are not violating any of their brand guidelines. You can find their guidelines here. 

Why I Blog


By Jeremy Winaker

I am a senior staff member of the Kristol Hillel Center at the University of Delaware.  I mentor Jewish students on campus and teach a university class, Biblical & Classical Literature, for the Chaiken Center for Jewish Studies.   My position is funded by the Delaware Jewish community and a grant to Hillel from the Jim Joseph Foundation.  I am also a fellow of Rabbis Without Borders.  In other words, my work is connected; I started blogging to share my connection to the work. Behind the scenes of all my relationships, initiatives, events, classes, and teaching is my belief that Jewish values speak to and through lifelong learning: life is learning and learning is lived.  My work takes many forms, and my work is singular in its purpose.  I educate on behalf of the Jewish people.  My blog helps me articulate this underlying drive.

For years, I hesitated to start a blog.  I was not sure I would have the time.  I was not sure I had a voice.  And then, one day, I started.  My first post was a reaction to an article by a friend.  I felt deeply that he spoke truly to one part of the picture; I could speak to another.  In a flurry, I wrote Ten Truths about Life Between Synagogues.  I built the blog site around the idea that most of my future posts would be in reference to the class I teach and the work I do.  It’s called חי-er Ed (a play on higher education and on the Hebrew word for “life,” pronounced kha’i).  I supposed that my audience was Jewish professionals, university faculty and administrators, and educators generally. After a number of posts and drafts of posts, I can say that my blog is an essential component of my work.  It is both the follow through and the invitation to learning with me.  To my delight, friends, students, colleagues, stakeholders, and others have read my posts and shared with their friends.  While I suppose I expected this broader audience, I think I expected my reach to be a way of connecting core constituents to the larger context of my work; I did not count on the connection running both ways. Most of the time, I write reflectively about my work to get to the depth behind the numbers and anecdotes normally shared with stakeholders.  Given that the work means more to me, my blog is the way to articulate the deeper meaning of what I do and what I see on campus.  It turns out that that meaning is relevant to more than one set of constituents; the Jewish people is bigger than any one college campus. Given my realization of this broader audience, I have changed my goals.  Instead of writing every three weeks, I  try to write in the moment of learning, often postponing a holiday post as I did with Yom Kippur at College opting to unpack Heavenly Ground Rules.  Instead of worrying whether people are commenting on my blog site, I enjoy the conversations on Facebook and Twitter which I use to promote posts.  While I did not set number goals for readers, shares, followers, or comments, I appreciate the statistics that allow me to see which posts have the greatest reach.  My new goal is to establish a base readership and a base content that can be referenced and returned to. I am grateful to Adam Goldberg for the chance to write this blog post for a few reasons:

  1. I get to reflect on the larger project of my blog.
  2. I learned how to share blog posts to extend my reach.
  3. I hope to model a way for Hillel, and others, to share successes and challenges in a deeper way.

After all, I believe in my work.  My blog is one more tool to advance it, a tool I find to have increasing returns.  I hope to see you there.



Win a 1 Hour Social Media Training


For my first blog giveaway, I want to give a 1 hour social media training to the Hillel that receives the most mentions in the comments of this post. I want to give back to where I was inspired to become a social media blogger. My first job out of college in 2010 was working for Towson Hillel as the Director of Engagement. I learned how to use social media to engage with students and manage an online community. Human interaction is a lot like social media; answer questions when people ask them, engage in exciting conversation and be true to yourself.

The Details

Two Hillels will win a free 1 hour social media training via Skype for students and/or staff. I have previously held a Google+ Hangout for Hillel Professionals where we talked social media strategy.

To earn entries:

– Post in the comments section of this post why your Hillel should win
– Follow @socially_gold on Twitter and tweet why you should win the free training with your Hillel’s name as a hash tag. Ex. #TowsonHillel should win the 1 hour social media training with @socially_gold”
– Like SociallyGold on Facebook and post on the wall why your Hillel should win.
– Subscribe to SociallyGold’s email updates


If your Hillel receives at least 18 comments on this post by 1.31.13 and why you should win, you will automatically earn a 1 hour free social media training.

Click the image below to download the flyer that you can post on social media and in your Hillel.

Good Luck!

Social Media Training Contest-01

Summary: Social Media Google Hangout for Hillel Pros

Tonight we had our first Social Media Google Hangout for Hillel Pros. The   session was set to last an hour and ended right on time. I provided the topics for the first one, but would love for others to offer topics next time. I relied on my experiences with Hillel, Ask Big Questions and my full time job as a social media specialist.

Screen Shot 2012-12-13 at 8.21.40 PM

Here are the list of topics that were covered

- How to measure Facebook Engagement

- Accurate event RSVPs with Social Media

- Should you link Facebook and Twitter

- Using Social Media for Birthright Recruitment

We spent about 20 minutes on each topic and everyone has a chance to offer perspective of what happens at their Hillel. The goal of a social media hangout is that Hillel pros can build off of each other, see that they are not alone with the challenges they have and do it in a relaxed atmosphere. This was the first of many Hangouts to come, so don’t worry if you missed this first one.

Here are some tweets during and after the Hangout.

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We had an intimate group for the first Hangout and even had someone join us via phone! As soon as the Hangout ended, those that attended  sent out tweets almost immediately. We created a #MicroCommunity!

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I asked for feedback once the hangout was over and everyone said they really enjoyed it because…

– They chose to be there and it wasn’t mandatory

– They weren’t necessarily responsible for any tasks after the Hangout

– It’s nice to connect on a more personal and laid back level

– These are important topics that a lot of people are interested in

– *No one can tell if you are wearing pants.That’s my reason. ;)

The next Social Media Google Hangout for Hillel Pros will be after the New Year.Have any topics you would like to see covered in the next social media hangout? Let us know in the comments!

Adam (SociallyGold) Goldberg is a former Hillel professional and currently consults Ask Big Questions with their social media strategy. He also works full time as a social media specialist at an apartment management company. Have social media questions? Tweet, email, Facebook or smoke signal any questions you may have.