Tips for Non-Profits Using Social Media

I often am asked to give advice for non-profits and charities on how to use the various social networks to promote their cause or raise more funds. I don’t have the secret sauce, but there are a few things any NPO can do to improve its chances.

What the NPO Staff Can Do

  1. Provide good content to the person running your accounts. That means pictures from events, quotes from volunteers, testimonials from clients, etc. 
  2. Like/follow your own pages. Seems like a no-brainer, but it happens more than I can tell you.
  3. RT/Share/Like your own organization’s content. See note from #2.
  4. Invite your friends to like/follow the organization.

What the Board and Volunteers Can Do

  1. Provide good content to the person running your accounts. That means pictures from events, testimonials, articles of interest.
  2. Like/follow the organization’s pages. Seems like a no-brainer, but it happens more than I can tell you.
  3. RT/Share/Like your own organization’s content. See note from #2. Liking and sharing is especially important on Facebook. You need to engage with your organization’s content to make Facebook see that it’s important to you. Once Facebook sees it is important to you, then it will start to show it to more people. The more you engage with your organization’s content, the more people will see it. Engagement begets engagement on Facebook, so like away!
  4. Invite your friends to like/follow the organization. From my experience in local NPOs and fundraising, it’s the board and volunteers who have the most influence in the community. Some boards like to think it’s the staff, and in some cases that may be true, but generally speaking, YOU have the power and the more influential friends. That’s just the way it is. Volunteers generally have an easier time selling tickets than staff.
  5. Talk about your organization, it’s programs, campaigns, successes and failures. If you hang out in circles that spend $200 on fundraising dinners regularly, you can help just by promoting your organization’s next event to that group of people. And I don’t mean only when there are tickets to be sold. Talk about the government funding that didn’t come through. Share the letter to the editor that your Executive Director wrote. If this organization is important to you, be proud of it and share with your friends.
  6. Follow/connect with local reporters. They often tweet/post when they’re looking for people to interview about certain topics. If you can help them out by connecting them with your organization, you both win!

I know I have a lot of readers from the Halifax NPO community… here’s your chance. What would you add to this list? How can your staff and volunteers help you in social media?

Comments (2)

  • Get Your Supporters On-Board for Any Social Media Campaign Reply

    […] Here is the short list of things you need to do to mobilize your volunteers. Simple things like asking your dedicated Board of Directors to click Like and Share whenever possible. Yes, you may even have to send them a daily email reminder…they are busy people too. […]

    November 19, 2014 at 7:15 am
  • Social Media Brings People Together Reply

    […] The fact that her death has touched me brings a whole new understanding of the impact social media has on our lives. Here I am honestly and truly upset by the death of someone I only knew through her blog and on Facebook. HOW is that possible? I don’t even know if we ever even had a typed conversation between us! Like hundreds of other e-friends, I followed Katie’s battle with cancer on her blog where she wrote the most incredible posts–some uplifting and some heartbreaking. Her husband Kevin posted when Katie was no longer able to, keeping us all up-to-date on her struggle. Her last, unfinished post was finally posted after her death, but even in that post you can hear a glimmer of hope. Even though I didn’t meet Katie, through her blog I feel like we’ve known each other forever. That is the power of social media. […]

    April 16, 2015 at 4:54 am

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