Ten Common Questions Nonprofits Ask About Social Media
Whether you are new to social media or have active accounts on multiple platforms, there are always new things to learn about maximizing your nonprofit’s presence on social media.
1. Why do I need to post on social media?
There are a range of purposes for why people post on social media. Some want to drive traffic to their website, engage with current supporters, or find new followers who could turn into potential supporters. People often gain interest in your organization simply by seeing how you post on social media. By maintaining a consistent social media presence, you can turn initial interest into long-term support.
2. Is it important to interact with individual followers on social media?
Definitely! Interact with your audience as a whole by publishing a combination of original content and content from other similarly mission-focused nonprofits. Interact with individuals by responding to direct messages, comments and liking posts that mention you. Responsive actions show that you have a personal presence on the channel and make your followers feel
like they have a voice. Good personal interaction with your audience can also convert passive visitors to potential volunteers, donors, and supporters.
3. What do I post?
Tailor content for each channel to leverage known behavior that is most impactful for that channel’s audience. Different channels (Instagram, Twitter, Facebook) have different audiences, and you want to meet their specific interests to amplify content engagement. For example, Facebook content is generally geared more around conversation. Twitter can be used to share blog posts, news updates, and is more informal. Instagram is used to share visual images that align with your mission. At the end of the day, every nonprofit is different and will find success differently on social media. Measure your engagement by studying what kind of content gets the most likes, shares, retweets, and comments, and see where you fall on the engagement chart later in this eBook. Then, adjust based on which channels and posts are most successful for you.
4. Should I schedule out my content?
For sure. Besides just saving time, scheduling your content allows you to cultivate cohesive messaging across all platforms even as the
content varies between days and platforms. Facebook allows you to schedule content for free, and other services charge a monthly fee to allow you to schedule out batches of social posts. PWI Soapbox is a tool we’ve designed
that allows you to schedule posts on all platforms in one place.
5. How much should I post?
It’s important to have a plan for how many posts you make in a day so your audience is up to date with your work but not overwhelmed. Follow this general rule for how many posts to make per day, per platform.
Facebook: 1-3 posts per day
Twitter: 3-5 per day
Instagram: 1 per day
6. Should I spend money on ads on social media?
It depends on your situation. Money doesn’t necessarily guarantee results. Most importantly, make sure you spend time creating engaging content that will drive interaction and support back to your nonprofit. Paid ads can be helpful if you are trying to drive traffic to your website, reach a new audience, or advertise specific events outside of your normal daily posts. They can also be tailored to a target audience and can help you connect with a new group of
7. How do I find a new network of supporters on social?
Search Twitter and Instagram for the latest trending and most searched hashtags relating to your work. This will help you connect with a new like-minded audience that is interested in the same type of content that you publish.
8. Should I use images in my posts?
Not always – it depends on the content and goals of your post. Not every post requires an image, but research has shown that, when used appropriately, social media posts with images capture attention better than plain text posts.
“When people hear information, they’re likely to remember only 10% of that information three days later. However, if a relevant image is paired with that same information, people retained 65% of the information three days later.”
9. How often should I update my organization’s profile?
Update it as often as is necessary to make sure your contact information is always correct so that it’s easy for your followers to get in touch with you directly. You should display your phone number, email address, and location if possible. On Instagram, you can update links in your bio regularly to direct people to different pages on your website or specific blog posts.
10. How should I move forward in updating my organization’s social media plan?
Don’t panic! It’s never too late to improve your social media presence. Set
aside time dedicated to building up your social media.
Make sure you have a marketing plan for social media that is focused on
communicating your organization’s mission and core principles.
Start posting regularly and see what kind of content is most effective with
your audience. Monitor engagement and respond to your followers.
Results may take time. Building a successful social media page won’t happen overnight, but by committing time and setting goals you can find increased engagement with both current and potential supporters.
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