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Social Media for Social Good: How Nonprofits Can Use Social Media Marketing Tools to Accomplish Their Missions


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Are you thinking about entering the world of social media for your nonprofit but not sure where to start? Do you wonder how it can make a difference to your organization? Or have you started out in the world of blogs, Twitter and Facebook but you’re not sure which tools and approaches are right for you? Are you concerned about time management and how much it will all cost?

When it comes to communication strategies, many nonprofits tend to stay in familiar, one-way marketing terrain – static websites, direct mail appeals, and print newsletters. However, the explosive growth of social media marketing tools offers an interactive way for nonprofits to build community and raise funds and awareness like never before.

Whether you already use social media in your nonprofit’s development plan or you’re new to the game, this presentation is for you. We will cover 10 highly successful social media habits of nonprofits, the “rules of the road” in social media for nonprofits and answer the big question – why do it at all?

Published in: Technology

Social Media for Social Good: How Nonprofits Can Use Social Media Marketing Tools to Accomplish Their Missions

  1. 1. Social Media for Social Good: How Nonprofits Can Use Social Media Marketing Tools to Accomplish Their Missions April 11, 2013 SAYMedia SalemJ Campbell Social
  2. 2. “Social Media” – What is it?  Any online technology or practice that people use to share (content, opinions, insights, experiences, perspectives and media).  REAL interactions in REAL time.
  3. 3. “Social Media” – Is it a fad?  No.  The platforms may change (anyone remember Friendster and Myspace?) – but the concept is not going to change.  Social media has revolutionized the way we communicate with each other on a personal and professional level.  Social media has completely changed our expectations of brands, companies and nonprofits.
  4. 4. 2013 eNonprofit Benchmarks Study 98% have a Facebook page with an average community size of over 8k fans. Average Facebook and Twitter communities grew by 30% and 81% in 2012, respectively. Average value of a Facebook Like is $214.81 (over 12 months following acquisition).
  5. 5. 2013 eNonprofit Benchmarks Study 73% of noprofits allocate half of a full time employee to managing social networking activities. 43% budget $0 for their social networking activities. The top 3 factors for success in social media we found to be:  Strategy  Prioritization  Dedicated staff
  6. 6. Why Is This Important for Nonprofits? Extension of donor relations – research, stewardship, cultivation, connection. Public awareness! “We do such great work but no one has ever heard of us!” Transparency – not operating in a silo. Public accountability.
  7. 7. Why Is This Important for Nonprofits? It makes us dig deep into the “Why would anyone care?” question.  We know why we do it.  We know why you should give us money, volunteer, attend our event, care!  But can we convey the WHY?  Can we make people care?  Can we cut through the clutter and the noise?
  8. 8. Important Notes Before You Begin Technology is constantly in flux and you will need to be adaptable. The work is never “done”. You need to find a balance. There is no customer service (there are forums, blogs, Help centers). Tools are free (like a puppy is free). Need to invest time in training and/or in staff. Some tools cost a little.Adapted from Social Media for Social Good by Heather Mansfield
  9. 9. Important Notes Before You Begin Fear is counterproductive! Connecting with your constituents is never a waste of time. Don’t compare yourself! There is no silver bullet, magic strategy – there are best practices, tips and tricks, but there is no absolute solution. (So, it’s like everything.)Adapted from Social Media for Social Good by Heather Mansfield
  10. 10. Don’t Put the Cart Before the Horse pyramid.html
  11. 11. Get Organized Get buy-in from Executive Staff and Board. Define your goals and objectives.  Raise money?  Secure new volunteers?  Increase website traffic?  Build online brand?  Foster social good?  Create social change?  Write down 3-4 goals for your social media campaign (can tie with overall marketing goals).
  12. 12. Get Organized Create a Social Media Measurement spreadsheet  As of the start of your campaign, how many:  Likes, Followers, Blog readers, Email subscribers  Google Analytics Receive Google Alerts and New York Times alerts for your nonprofit specifically and your industry/cause
  13. 13. Get Organized Sign up and secure all URLs – be consistent.   Save usernames and passwords in a spreadsheet. Get a square version of your logo for avatars.
  14. 14. Get Organized Check out Social Media Dashboards & Scheduling Tools  HootSuite, TweetDeck, Buffer Remember, it is always most effective to login and monitor each site individually. Follow/Like organizations with similar missions and programs. Follow/Like other local organizations (no politicians!!)
  15. 15. Get Organized Start a simple Editorial Calendar.   A tool for planning, scheduling and managing publication of content across channels  Blog posts  Twitter  Facebook  YouTube  Podcasts  Email Newsletters  Direct mail campaigns  Press releases  Events
  16. 16. Get Organized Measure results slowly.  Facebook – Instant Post Insights  Twitter – ReTweets, mentions  Website analytics and traffic  Blog traffic  Email newsletter signups See what works. Do more of that.
  17. 17. FAQ: Confidentiality Concerns “Client and staff identities need to be protected or lives are at risk.” Clients will be less likely to seek our services if they think there is a danger of their identity being revealed.” “We may be the target of hostile PR campaigns (women’s rights and gay rights organizations).”
  18. 18. FAQ: Confidentiality Concerns “Best way to protect confidentiality is to think about humans as much, if not more, than the technology.” Jayne Cravens, TechSoup Community Forum Manager Ensure that every employee and volunteer knows:  What info should be confidential and WHY.  What do breaches look like – online and offline.  Consequences.  Must be addressed and discussed frequently – part of the culture!  Develop a policy (Google “Employee Social Media Policy”)More info at:
  19. 19. FAQ: Confidentiality Concerns What should ever be shared in writing? What should not?  Email  Organization’s network/intranet  Website  Blog  Own individual Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter accounts Need clear, concise, explicit policies with examples. Think HR handbook/protocols.More info at:
  20. 20. Facebook 101  The place where people go to connect/reconnect with friends and family.  People come to Facebook to make personal connections and to have fun.  Strategy – Help supporters feel more connected to your organization; show them who you are as individuals; help them connect to each other.  Share “behind the scenes” photos and videos, ask questions, share compelling statistics and success stories.  Easy, light, fun. Include media with all posts – links, photos, videos.
  21. 21. Twitter 101  A space where people share the content that excites them, in short 140 character bursts.  The link reigns supreme!  Strategy – Don’t get too personal; share the best content you can find; drive traffic to your website; get people to “ReTweet” your content; follow people who have lots of followers and ask them to spread your message.  ReTweet, Thank – create good Twitter karma.  Statistics, quotes, links. Be creative!
  22. 22. LinkedIn 101  A professional network where people go to build networks and connect to resources.  Strategy – Unlike Facebook, people actually want to talk about work and work issues on LinkedIn. Longer, wordier responses, more professional tone.  Look for potential employees and volunteers, share professional networking events, Board opportunities, join Groups and ask questions and start discussions.  Very good for donor prospect research, recruiting volunteers and staff members; also promoting thought leadership on an issue.
  23. 23. Pinterest 101  “Pinterest is a tool for collecting and organizing things you love” – People use it to make wish lists, plan trips, organize events, start collections, interior decorating, plan projects  Pinterest is aspirational, not of-the-moment.  It is also transactional, not relational like Facebook, Twitter.  What we pin reflects what we covet, what moves us, what we desire, who we want to be.  Pinterest works more like a Vision Board, rather than an off-the-cuff, in-the-moment statement of what we are eating or where we are hanging out.
  24. 24. What will I post/tweet about?• Industry • Events, anniversa blogs, newslette ries, celebrations rs, websites , birthdays• Google Alerts & • Email newsletter New York • Tie current Times alerts events to your cause/issue• Competitors • Read everything• Success Stories and follow• Inspirational everyone! quotes • Figure out what’s• Reached a goal working for other nonprofits• Want input on and adapt it! an issue
  25. 25. OK – But How Do I Raise Money?? Facebook Ladder of Engagement – John HaydonMore info at:
  26. 26. OK – But How Do I Raise Money?? “Facebook is not Amazon and Pinterest is not eBay.” – John Haydon Article: Why Can’t I Raise Any Money With Social Media Think about how you use social media channels:  Connect with friends and family  Discover interesting stuff  Sharing things that you like  Organizing with people who have common goals  People hardly ever “use social media with the goal of buying something or donating to a nonprofit”.More info at:
  27. 27. Take Aways Don’t compare. Don’t get discouraged. Get training. Get professional help. Do it in bite-size pieces. Do what’s manageable. Have realistic expectations. Less is always more. Quality over quantity. Go off-topic. Have fun!
  28. 28. Julia’s Social Media Philosophy Social media is a TOOL – it is not a silver bullet. In other words, you still need a compelling cause and good message. Integrate it with an overall marketing campaign, just as you would other tools (direct mail, newsletter, websit e, ads).
  29. 29. Julia’s Social Media Philosophy Not all social media channels are right for your nonprofit. Pick and choose. Do a few well than many poorly. QUALITY over QUANTITY – one quality Facebook post per day (or every few days) is worth more than 100 posts that get you unliked or unfollowed.
  30. 30. To learn more:     
  31. 31. Questions, comments, feedback?  Email:  Website:  Cell: 978-578-1328  Twitter: @JuliaCSocial  Facebook: jcsocialmarketing