We all know how great social media is for brands and business. It can make or break a company, but what impact does social media have on charities? After all, charities are free, they are often run by volunteers and do not have the money or funds to make huge splashes in the social media world. In fact, that’s most probably not even their desire. Truth be told, social media works exactly the same for charity, more so even, than for businesses. It just takes one tech savvy volunteer who understand social networks and are dedicated to getting your cause on the map.
Treat Your Charity As A Business
Like any business, you need to know what social media and networking is all about in order to understand how it can work for you and your charities aspirations. With millions of people signing into Twitter and Facebook each day, every charity would benefit from having at least a Facebook page or group and possibly even a Twitter feed of their own. These types of networks are completely free and this is great news for institutions which rely on low money options to get heard.
The basis of how to market your charity is actually the same as to how a business should use social networks. You do not want to post irrelevant information as it will be considered spammy and belittle your charities good nature. It is also crucial that you will want to take a personal approach. Try not to automate too many updates and always be sure to reply to people who contact you directly as these are the people who are interested in what you do. They are your audience and it’s them who will help you achieve big things by word of mouth and writing about you. Social media and networking is the new way people talk, interact and spread news. This is why it’s perfect for your charity.
Charity Is Social, Hence Social Networking!
Once you have enough people involved in your page, group or feed, you can start to rely on your followers to get actively involved in helping you become more prominent. Most importantly, you can rely on them to keep the content of these sites fresh and exciting. Charity is, after all, about getting the community involved in a good cause so the same theory should be applied to it’s online presence. People who are inspired by what you will do will talk and incite others into also taking part in your charity and Facebook walls are a fantastic way of doing this.
Take a charity that I am personally very fond of, Little Hen Rescue (LHR). This charity rescues retired battery chickens from farms and then helps re-home them to loving families where they can peacefully live out the rest of their days.
I only knew about them as I saw my own mum “Liked” their page and this showed up via my newsfeed. I’ve always had a soft spot for animal welfare so looked into the page and clicked on the link. I admired what they did and best of all, it was local to where I lived. As a result of their Facebook page, we now own 8 ex battery chickens. This is the power of social media and a very good cause and charity. If used correctly, it can tug at your heart strings and get people involved.
LHR now have a Twitter feed and Facebook page so popular that every time I sign into Facebook I have a notification saying someone has posted in there. And who is providing all this content? The people who support the charity and are advocates of what they do. And this is great news as it means they have a very firm fan base and word of what they do is spreading and invokes conversations and agreement. All inspired and possible because social media creatures avenues of conversations and beliefs, a formula that every what charity needs to thrive.
Extra Handy Tips
- Charities often need to be seen in public and maybe handing out leaflets and banners. Always be sure your social media sites are listed on these as so many people have Facebook that they will be more likely to look for you there than anywhere else.
- Even link your Facebook and Twitter profiles on your official website if you have one. These profiles make it easier for people to interact over rather than a website. Interaction=greater respect for your cause.
- The more comfortable you are with social media, the more helpful you may find Dashboards like MarketMeSuite. They offer you so many features and ways of campaigning your charity that they can hugely benefit your group.
If you are part of charity, do make sure you are not missing out on this crucial and easy form of advertisement. Don’t be afraid to embrace online media to help you get your points and arguments across. People do listen features like Facebook “Like” means you can be seen not just by the people directly involved in your page, but their friends can see as well. It’s a spiral of possibility and the more people who know about you, the greater your chance of making a difference in your niche area.
Image Source: https://twitter.com/littlehenrescue