When I think about nonprofit content marketing, one of my favorite marketing strategists I often am inspired by is Jay Baer, author of Youtility and countless other social media classics. He says the difference between “helping” and “selling’ is only two letters. But what a difference those two letters makes! Sell something and you create…
Your Guide to Social Media for Nonprofits
Nonprofit organizations have special needs when it comes to social media. Like all businesses, NPOs need to advertise their presence and mission. They also need to generate engagement, because it both fosters contributions and lets people know they’re around to help. Here are some other considerations for your nonprofit.
Introduction to How Nonprofits Can Use Social Media
Most of us don’t think about NPOs as needing to do marketing. However, fundraising is a form of marketing, and it can take a wide variety of forms. Just look at the varied advertising the Red Cross and United Way do on a regular basis. So, how do nonprofits leverage social media?
Claire Axelrad argues that social media is just as important to NPOs as it is to their for-profit counterparts. Social media colors the way that people view any kind of company or organization and helps them boost either contributions or sales (and sometimes both). If you want to reach out, it’s essential that people can see what your organization is up to. It gives your constituents a voice and allows the good work you do to be showcased. Think of social media as your nonprofit’s way to win friends and influence people, and a way to augment the old “word of mouth” techniques. At the end of the day, social media is essential for every business, including nonprofits.
Social Media Strategy for Nonprofits
Like any business, nonprofits need a social media strategy. As they say, failing to plan is planning to fail. Don’t be that nonprofit.
Nowadays the world of marketing is so crowded that people need to hear the same message many times before they actually pay attention. So, there are 9 thinks a nonprofit should do in order to have a successful social media strategy. 1. Put it in writing. 2. Increase your social media following AND your email list. 3. Make social media a part of fundraising efforts. 4 and 5. Leverage content marketing consistently. 6. Choose an avatar that reflects your values, and is compelling, but isn’t your logo. 7. Choose at least 2 different social networks to maintain. 8. Take advantage of LinkedIn. Finally, 9, don’t forget to take digital payments.
Social media is a powerful tool for any kind of business, including nonprofits. However, the advantages are a little bit different for nonprofits. Essentially, the objectives I share here fall under two categories: increasing revenue, and decreasing expenses. Revenue first: Social media helps you find grants more easily, target people with higher incomes for donations, and fundraise in ways that are both public and fun. It also helps retain subscribers to corporate updates, promote events like the annual gala, and make your organization more accessible to the public. Finally, it promotes both collaboration with other nonprofits and improved advertising. Social media also helps decrease costs, in particular through the reduction of recruiting expenses for interns and volunteers. If you need an employee, social media is also a great way to reduce the cost of hiring through candidate discovery.
Nonprofit Content Marketing
Content marketing seems to come naturally to for-profit corporations these days. However, nonprofits tend to lag behind their peers in this area. Here are some posts that can help you sort through the issues.
In the for-profit market, content marketing is intended to both help potential customers and sell things. However, Claire Axelrad points out that the main purpose of content marketing for nonprofits is to help people. This is effective for a number of reasons. First, helping people creates a sense of loyalty to your organization, while selling to them only makes a customer feel like a servant. Second, people like to be treated like adults who can be your partners, rather than a bunch of kids that need to be taught. Finally, using content marketing for nonprofits means that you are giving people something in the hope that they’ll contribute. This is a mutually beneficial relationship that pays dividends. In closing, she gives us some tips to help NPOs in different sectors some ideas on how to create the right content.
Have you thought about how to implement content and social media marketing? Here are some useful tips. First, make sure and have a written plan. This is the only way to ensure that your marketing department stays on track. Second, be sure that you aren’t the last organization to embrace new trends. So many nonprofits make this mistake, and it costs them a lot of potential contributions. Third, start constructing a quality editorial calendar, which plans out all the content you plan on publishing for the year. Fourth, make sure you have a schedule for all your marketing needs, and not just the content marketing. Fifth, ensure that the plan you’ve made is focused on your constituents. Sixth, always stay focused on your institutional goals. That includes both your fundraising needs and nonprofit mission as a whole. Lastly, seventh, stay on top of the latest marketing trends. You don’t want to be “that organization” whose head appears to be in the sand and always produces outdated content. Instead, by being on top of trends you can more easily direct your marketing department and any independent contractors.
Check Out All of Our Social Media for Nonprofits Posts Below!
By now, whatever your business – for- or non-profit — you shouldn’t have to be persuaded that nonprofit content marketing and social media are essential strategies to survive and thrive in the current zeitgeist. The digital revolution won. Digital communications are a part of our daily lives. It’s fundamentally changed how people find you and…
If you think social media marketing strategy for nonprofits is a lot of sound and fury signifying nothing, think again. Ever hear the old advertising adage that folks need to see/hear something at least 7 times before they notice it? Our airspace is so congested these days I wouldn’t be surprised if folks today must…
Nonprofits wanting gifts should give them. Relationships work that way. And relationships count for everything. Getting and retaining donors (and, really, any type of constituent) is all about building and stewarding relationships. Satisfying, long-term relationships; not quick transactions. And lasting relationships are measured by the mutually sustaining benefits experienced by all parties over time. Give…
I had a chance this week to speak at an event in front of several different local Orange County nonprofit organizations. While nonprofits are beginning to understand the potential for social media engagement, my sense during the meeting was that efforts seemed to be centered around Facebook for the objective of merely gaining awareness for…