A Message from our President
Fall holidays are fast approaching, with winter ones coming right behind them. While we personally are planning ways to connect with family and friends, many of us are also planning ways for our organizations to connect with donors and patrons.
As our year begins to close, we focus on sharing news of the impact we have had and encourage support during this season of giving. Nowadays, as "alternative" communication has become mainstream, it isn't only the message that matters, but how we choose to communicate it. Net Stangle-Castor discusses some of these options in this month's article.
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Article of the Month
Word count: 352
Approximate Reading Time: 3 Minutes
Social Media for Non-Profits: How to Engage Supporters
by Nannette Stangle-Castor
Every single day, more than half a billion Tweets are posted.
Nearly 250 million people are on LinkedIn. And behemoths like Facebook and
YouTube exploded beyond the one billion mark quite some time ago.
These social media channels are no longer occasional, 'nice
to have' outlets for non-profits. They are a must. Millions of people are using
these platforms every day to network with colleagues, build a loyal following,
and deepen their engagement with supporters.
The question is: how can you position yourself to make an
impact in an already crowded field?
We are all busy people, but if done correctly, social
media engagement can provide a very tangible return on investment.
The key is to develop a clear strategy before diving in.
Ask yourself, what do you want to accomplish? Which social media channels are
most likely to achieve your end result?
In my social media training, I advise my clients to be
W: Who do you
want to learn from and influence?
I: What kind of insights
are you looking for?
S: How can you be selective
so you are not overwhelmed?
E: How can you best engage
your target audience?
In addition to strategy, non-profit leaders in particular
need to develop an authentic voice in their online interactions with supporters
and stakeholders. No one wants to engage with a sales-y pitch or a blatant
fundraising plea on social media. Users of social media want to engage with thought
leaders who can educate and inspire by sharing meaningful ideas and insights.
To do this well, take a look at how some of the most
successful non-profits have engaged with their audience. Visceral Business'
Charity Social 100 Index ranks non-profits to show which
organizations are having the most impact online.
With a rock solid social media strategy and authentic
voice, you can attract new supporters, earn media attention, differentiate
yourself from competitors, stay informed of key trends, and become a thought
leader. Once you establish a level of trust, you will find that your supporters
are using the power of social media to help spread the word about your cause.
Bottom Line: Wise use of social media can promote your mission and engage your followers.
Stangle-Castoris President of InnoVector
Tech, a management consulting and strategic communications firm based in
Raleigh, North Carolina. You can follow her on Twitter as @NannetteSC.
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