How do you use your social media to raise money for your charity? Part 2

I don’t think too many charity leaders or Marcom professionals are going to suggest to you that social media will create overnight success for your organization. Most nonprofit professionals don’t think it will, but some of us are quick to give up when we aren’t getting overnight success. Josephson (2013) describes a complaint he sometimes hears:” We have a Facebook page but it’s just not working”. A common and very flawed statement. First the definition of “working” is often skewed but just having a page and thinking it will magically engage your donors, raise money AND connect with a younger demographic on its own, or with little effort, is ridiculous. Generally speaking in life, the more “free and easy” something is to get the harder you have to work and spend on it to get results out of it. Social media is similar. It is great because it is so accessible, easy to start and use and incredibly free. But that means you have to invest more intentionally in how you use it”
Given how busy we all are it is easy to invest some time in pushing information out to your followers and investing little to no time engaging them and interacting with them. Why is this important other than the obvious answer that it is not called “social media” for nothing? Developing relationships, engaging and building trust with your followers increases the likelihood that you will build trust with and engage their followers. Creedon (2012) describes :”… more than half of social media users (68 percent) say that they would “take time to learn more about a charity if they see a friend posting about it.” As leaders working or volunteering for a nonprofit this is music to our ears. To attract volunteers, to engage new first time donors we have to first get people interested in our cause and our organization. We must spend time both informing our followers what we do as well as in developing relationships with them. If we do they will be more likely to share our content and to describe to their networks how they are involved with us. As Creedon suggests when they do this well over half of their followers will in turn take time to learn about what we do.
In their blog post on Forbes, Ambassador and Clark (2014) describe how to turn this interest into raising more money for your favorite charity. There authors suggest recruiting a team of volunteers to help with online pledge fundraising. However recruiting a team is not sufficient -these authors suggest that you have to show them how to help you. They describe:” It’s critical to engage them regularly and provide them with guidelines about what to post and how to ask their audiences to support the cause. To increase engagement, try to make the process turnkey for them (Ambassador & Clark, 2014).”
This appears to be a critical factor “making the process turnkey”. Doesn’t it make sense the easier you make it for your followers to share your, content, your story and your pledge pages; the more likely they will be to share them. Additionally most of the followers on our social media may be interested in raising funds for us but they are not professional fundraisers. They way however be highly resourceful and fluent in their use of social media. Arming these followers with our stories which are interesting , compelling and easy to share makes them more effective in telling our story to their followers. Arming these same followers with sample posts and tweets to support our fundraising appeals or our peer to peer fundraising pages only makes them more effective in raising funds for us.
References
Josephson, B (2013) Can You Raise Money With Social Media? February 14, 2013 RE:Charity ; as retrieved from http://recharity.ca/can-you-raise-money-with-social-media/
Creedon ,A (2012) Infographic: Social Media’s Impact on Giving in 2012 https://nonprofitquarterly.org/policysocial-context/21507-infographic-social-medias-impact-on-giving-in-2012.html
Bruny, M..A & Clark ,D (2014) 5 Tips To Help You Raise More Money For Your Favorite Charity In 2014 Forbes as retrieved from: http://www.forbes.com/sites/dorieclark/2014/01/02/5-tips-to-help-you-raise-more-money-for-your-favorite-charity-in-2014/
If you want to read part one of this article follow this link: https://mathiesonlarry.wordpress.com/2014/07/24/does-your-social-media-raise-any-money-for-your-charity/

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