Though there are a number of ways you can market your nonprofit, one method you shouldn't ignore is using social media. Social media marketing allows you to reach a worldwide audience, and is very cost-effective. However, there are several "do's" and "don'ts" you must keep in mind:
1. Don't Automate Your Posts
Match up your messages with the correct medium. Use a Facebook page for announcements, Pinterest for photographs, and Twitter for short bits of wisdom.
2. Make Your Content High Quality
Poorly written content is a sure way to get your cause ignored. Create concise, well-written posts, and be sure to include a creative headline and a catchy opening. Keep your content positive and beneficial for readers.
3. Tell a Brief Story
You need to present a hook to motivate your readers to donate. Merely citing a bunch of statistics related to your cause is unlikely to gain much interest - so make your story creative.
4. Educate Your Readers
You're unlikely to be successful if you don't inform your readers exactly what their donations will be used for. Tell your story and explain what your cause hopes to solve.
5. Be Clear in Your Request
Once you've told your story, be clear about what you are requesting from your potential donors. Tell them how much money you need, and explain the specific ways they can go about donating. The easier you make the process for your potential donors, the better your results will be.
One thing to avoid when using social media marketing for your nonprofit is automation. Although convenient, you run the risk of turning off your viewers. Take time and make the effort to tailor your posts to each individual social media platform. That way, you'll have a truly engaged audience.
What tips do you have for non-profits and social media?
David Bakke is a columnist Money Crashers, an online resource with a goal to educate people in all walks of life to improve their "financial fitness." Topics covered include budgeting, smart shopping, investing, careers and education, and saving for retirement.