Whether it was chatting at our booth in the science fair (expo hall), watching various speakers kill it at their sessions or networking at the progressive parties, NTEN’s 2014 Nonprofit Technology Conference was a great experience.

My largest take away from this conference is just how dedicated nonprofit professionals are to harnessing technology and other resources to work toward their cause. I sat in awe of these altruistic people and had to hide my giddiness when talking to them. These knowledgeable and oh-so-friendly people were excited to stop and share stories and hear my own thoughts on how technology could further benefit their cause. Of course we spoke about Charity Dynamics and the products and services we offer, but we also shared stories of fundraising successes, the great amount of buzz around responsive design and just generally what’s new and happening in various organizations. And of course what you can do with your very own COWBELL! Some people plan on using them to announce milestones within their office, like, “we hit 5,000 Facebook followers,” others plan on using them to cheer on a friend at the next 5K race, one bold individual even put the bell on her cat – though I’m not sure how long the cat allowed the bell to stay on, others simply want to annoy their coworkers (umm, sorry guys).

On Thursday, I attended the User Personas session by Brenda Miele and Debra Sharp; it was packed. People were actually sitting on the floor. Attendees listed intensely as Brenda and Deb shared their expertise on user personas. They suggested researching what is most beneficial for a nonprofit’s clients before developing or perfecting their user personas enabling them to make their website more helpful for and representative of the groups and individuals their organizations are working to help.

Friday, I attended Matthew Mielcarek and Caryn Stein’s Amazing Data Show. Again, it was a full house! Matthew and Caryn’s ability to make data into a highly energetic and entertaining show was highly impressive. Releasing information about Charity Dynamics’ upcoming Interactive Investment Report unleashed a wave of live tweets from attendees who were intrigued by the survey’s results. The full Interactive Investment report will be released later this spring, be sure to look for it!

I feel like my head is still spinning from the information gained and the new connections made, but I am excited to see what the rest of 2014 brings for the nonprofit sector and of course to see how my new friends are using their cowbells.