Social engagement for non profits is a great way to engage your supporters and keep the community aware of your organization and its mission. Navigating the social media landscape may not require big media budgets, but it does require attention, effort and planning.
There are key ways to engage your audience and keep them informed of your mission and successes that provide opportunities for meaningful conversations with supporters, constituents and the public.
Here are the top 5 tips to step up your organization’s social game
1. Be a “Come to” not a “Run from”
Create a social media voice the presents you as a resource and “subject matter experts” to provide meaningful content in the social media space. Using social media to solicit donations and post press announcements don’t engage an audience to feel as passionately about your cause as your existing supporters already do. An authentic voice will drive engagement and build support for your organization.
2. Be the “tortoise” not the “hare”
When starting a new social channel, it is easy to get fired up and post five times a day for a week and then nothing again for months. Be the tortoise, not the hare; slow and steady wins this race. Someone should be able to look at your timeline or feed as a chronological look-back window to understand the sequential development and progress of your organization. Consistency builds familiarity, familiarity builds trust, and trust gets donations.
3. Show & Tell
Tell a story that people want to hear and illustrate that story with visual elements. Share relevant photos and videos of team members and events. Photos and photo galleries consistently get more engagement than just text. Use photos with people that your audience can relate to and see which images get engagement to build a strategy of image use in your future posts. If a picture is worth 1000 words and you only have 140 characters to tweet with, sharing an image is the way to stretch your communication coin.
4. Keep it Fun
There are so many wonderful (and not so wonderful) resources out there that all claim to have the secret recipe or formula for the perfect social media strategy. And while many of these offer useful information and insight, when the conversation gets so technical there is an eminent danger of overcomplicating and losing sight of your primary goal: to connect people interested in your organization. When things start to get hazy, don’t forget to keep it fun. Think about your organization and what you love about it. Share something that is fun or humorous. Making someone smile or laugh is the easiest, most foolproof way to engage someone when there are scrolling through their feed.
5. Conduct your symphony
Quality content, consistency, and telling a visual story, will all be instrumental in strengthening your voice across all of your social media channels but don’t forget your most important responsibility: YOU are the conductor of your organization’s digital symphony. Without you to lead the conversation, all of the voices are reduced to different sounds that make senseless noise and competing for focus; and in some cases can even cause us to cover our ears and tune it all out. Be a thought leader in your organization, provide your opinion and ask the valuable questions that invite your community to engage and contribute. When done right, social media for nonprofits can drive membership and donations and gain exposure for your cause, and that is the music we all want to hear.