Social Media Marketing for Nonprofits

Nonprofit Marketing & Fundraising is Hard Work.

We get it. You put the mission above yourself every day. Our own Adrienne Wallace recently presented to the local Association of Fundraising Professionals on this topic. Here are some of the insights she shared. You can also view her Prezi here:

This can be especially true in the age of digital and social media marketing, when it seems like you need to do more, with less, and be in more places to connect with supporters. We’re here to help with a few tips on social media for nonprofits.

Social Media marketing is a tool, not a magic pill that will make things happen overnight. You need to build your community before you make an ask. That can take time to do. In looking at your fundraising calendar, look at your social network and incorporate that too.

Successful nonprofits with social media fundraising success stories are those who have invested the time to build their community. We know every organization would love to be the next Ice Bucket Challenge. It has to start with a solid audience to help share your message.

What Digital Marketing Channels Can be Used for Fundraising?

In a word, all of them. It depends on where your audience is.

  • Everybody is on Facebook, and it has become a pay to play space. Facebook advertising can be very cost effective, and can be very targeted to your audiences (and more like them). Check out our post all about Facebook Advertising here
  • Texting Campaigns – building your mobile numbers database and utilizing text to give campaigns. Text donors are most likely to be 49-59
    • WhatsApp for instant messaging, text to campaign
  • Email is still very important. Up to one third of online fundraising revenue comes from email marketing.
  • Don’t be afraid of newer platforms or technology (like SnapChat, Instagram and others). Get younger people on your board, or volunteers to help you with the technology. You can help with the voice & strategy.
  • Instagram is continuing to grow and can be a great resource for nonprofits, especially those with great images. Pictures of animals, children…need we say more?

Know Who is Donating in General

National statistics are one thing, but your own statistics are a completely different animal.  When you try to partner a social fundraising campaign with your traditional campaign, be sure to verify that your donor base is on social media, and in that channel. We call this buyer personas.

How Do You Grow Your Online Followers?

  1. Content Creation
  2. Content Curation
  3. Review what are others doing that is so great
  4. Go out an like other pages, and watch their content
  5. Be consistent in your posting. There are no one-hit-wonders

How to Create Content Today and for Tomorrow

#Team834 lives by the rule of thirds for our client’s social media content.

  • One third of your posts can be about asking for support. Support of special events, donations, and other gifts.
  • One third recycled content or in our industry “curated content” from other organizations, corporate sponsors, volunteers, etc. Interesting articles related to your mission, to those you support and so on. If you work with the homeless, perhaps it is national statistics about homelessness, or sharing programs from other large cities that make the news.
  • The final third would be industry related posts – If you are part of a national nonprofit organization, they likely already have great content that you can repost locally – and connect it with your donors.

Content Creation Vs Content Curation

Good social media /digital marketing is about creating good content. You are building online relationships with your audiences. Take photos of things, items that you don’t find interesting, your audience will find interesting. They like to see things behind the scenes and feel connected to the organizations they support. Give them their why. They don’t want a bunch of stats, they want to see what their support is doing.

Harness the Power of Your Volunteers

Volunteers are your flock. They give more of themselves, and are almost twice as likely to donate to charity as others. What if you let them drive your social content for 24 hours? Their perspective, their testimonials, their insight can be profound in connecting with others like them.

Get Your Board on Board

The casics of a campaign is using similar messages shared by multiple people. Give board members and volunteers the content or even kits with ideas on what to share and when. Creating these tools for people makes it easy for them to share. What people you ask? Your board members, volunteers, engaged donors with social influence and so on. Give them examples of social media posts along with links and images so they can pretty much copy and paste. Or tweak to make their own. Either way – if it makes it easy and fast to share, they are more likely to do it.

We know the land of social media is vast, and can seem daunting to nonprofit organizations. Always remember to be where your audiences are, talk to them like you would at an event or over coffee, and give them reasons to share, like and give.

As you are heading into a HUGE fundraising time of year, let us know what other questions we might be able to answer for you.

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