Social media has become a huge presence in marketing, and nonprofit organizations are wise to utilize social media to their advantage. Facebook, in particular, is an easy, free, and effective way to generate support for a cause. By following a few simple Facebook tips, nonprofit organizations stand to benefit greatly, and build a solid base of support.
- As with any Facebook endeavor, the first step is to create a page. You can create a group, as well, but a page offers a few advantages. Having a Facebook page enables you to publish directly into the news stream allowing you to engage followers with a variety of media, including status updates, polls, videos, and photos. You can also analyze fan interaction with the Insights Dashboard, and buying advertising on your page is a good way to increase your number of fans. Use your nonprofit organization’s logo as your profile picture, and choose a name for your page that matches your organization’s website. It’s also a good practice to have more than one administrator, and to enable settings that maximize participation. Remember, the purpose of Facebook is not to advertise, but to create interaction. Fans should be allowed to:
- Write on the wall
- Post photos
- Post videos
- Post links
- Join Causes. In 2007, Causes was launched on Facebook, to help users make a difference in the world. It’s an application that lets Facebook users tell people about worthy causes, ask for donations, and share information. It’s easy to form an advocacy group on causes, and you can post announcements, send emails and Facebook notifications, encourage discussions, share information, create petitions, and fundraise. Nonprofit Organizations with multiple chapters can even use the Nonprofit Partner Center to manage their involvement.
- Be active, but make sure your content has value. Keep your status updates to once a day, but post frequently, sharing information about events, news stories, and other interesting items related to your cause. Share information on Facebook that users cannot find on your website, so that there is value in visiting your page.
- Create conversation. Pay attention to your wall, and don’t just post and walk away. Look for user comments and feedback, and engage them in conversations that will be interesting to others involved in your cause. Facebook is all about connecting with a community, so make sure to remain engaged.
- Utilize apps, to make it fun. Create a quiz or a game to connect with your fans in a unique way. Make it fun for them to post content to their walls, or share it with their friends. One way to do this is to create little virtual gifts, which they can give to their friends through your page.
- Use Facebook to garner donations. This can be as easy as creating a donations box, but you can also add a store, to maximize donation opportunities. Be sure to offer fans the option of adding a badge or button to their own Facebook pages; by doing so you’ll not only give them a feeling of ownership, but you’ll draw more attention to your page.
- Cross-promote, to maximize your Facebook page’s potential. By putting a “Like” button on your website, or allowing visitors to your site to share content, you’ll be driving traffic to your Facebook page, where they can become further involved.
When nonprofit organizations create Facebook pages, the ultimate goal is to translate online activity to real-life action. By keeping your Facebook page unique and compelling, you’ll create the kind of interest that leads people to get involved in a meaningful way. To learn more about building a base of support be sure to connect with DonorDirect on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Then, find more successful tips for ministries by following our blog and visiting our YouTube Channel.