Originally published on BitRebels.com.
Cost analysis is always on the minds of non-profit fundraising administrators. Take it from the administrative team behind the non-profit organization committed to spreading kindness, Acts 1:8 Ministry. There is a continuous evaluation of what a fundraising effort will cost balanced against the potential gain. Some organizations are slow to embrace new media as a legitimate avenue for fundraising despite the minimal expense associated with its use. And that is a mistake.
Marketing directors and fundraising administrators alike have been calling for upper administrators to accept social media as a tool that can help bring in volunteers, supporters, and even donors. While some organizations have taken the plunge into social media and been rewarded for it, some are still hesitant. With a little thought and planning, social media can bring donors into the fold and help cultivate them like no other program.
Below, the dedicated team at Acts 1:8 Ministry shares some tips to help a non-profit organization begin to delve into social media fundraising and to make those efforts more effective.
Mind Your Mission
Be sure that as the organization is selecting which social media platforms to use in fundraising, the non-profit administrators keep the mission in mind. All organizations have a mission statement. But sometimes it is helpful to review that mission statement. Look at it and then look at the myriad of social media platforms available.
A Facebook presence is something most all organizations can utilize, but not everyone has the available content to make a Pinterest page reasonable. Having a presence on every possible social media platform for the sake of having one isn't a good strategy. Know how each particular platform can help reach the fundraising mission and make certain that the organization is using that media for that reason.
As the social media presence is built and maintained, it is good to check in with the mission statements periodically - and with the mission set forth for each social media platform - to make sure that each is meeting mission. Social media is one of the most accessible fundraising programs to tweak and to adjust along the way. If something isn't performing as well as expected, it can be altered without much effort or expense.
Engage Your Audience
Social media is, by name social. You want to provide your audiences - and you may well have a variety of different audiences depending upon how many social media platforms you choose to utilize - with information about your non-profit organization.
But you also want to interact with those audiences and engage them. Be social with them. Take the opportunities afforded to you by social media to recognize those who Follow and Like you. As you begin to interact with your audiences, they will start to share your posts with those who interact with them. And as that happens, your message will be spread to a broader audience: the more people who see your message, the more people who may become potential donors.
While social media is different from traditional marketing and fundraising methods, it also responds to some conventional strategies. Donors and potential donors want to see how donated funds have been used. Tell stories showing how lives have been impacted by dollars given.
Recent data shows that video is finding its way to the top of news feeds on Facebook, and users are often willing to click a link to a video. Think about where that link or that video takes your audience. Don't direct your reader to another social media platform. Direct your audience to your website where they will have the opportunity to donate directly from your secure site. Be strategic about what you post and how.
Include a Call to Action
Whether on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram, be sure to include language in every few posts asking your audience to share your information with their friends or followers. Ask them to click a link to your website. Or be bold. Ask them directly to give - whether their time or goods or dollars. Sometimes the direct request is the best.
Those non-profit organizations that are seeing that social media is a part of the landscape today and are using it to their benefit are reaping the rewards. It can be used not merely to provide information but to raise funds for programming. Like all good fundraising, it's simply a matter of good strategy.
About Acts 1:8 Ministry: Acts 1:8 Ministry has been empowering Christians around the world for nearly two decades by training them to evangelize in their communities. Since its inception, the organization has worked with over 3,200 churches, groups and individuals in all 50 states in the USA and more than 100 countries around the globe.
The outreach program provides instruction, ideas, and follow-up support for every follower of Christ to become an effective evangelist. Free resources also include Christian Kindness Cards and motivational presentations.