When it comes to catching the attention of large-capacity donors, a nonprofit organization’s online presence matters, according to Nonprofit Hub. Beyond a website, a well-strategized social media presence can help in recruiting donors, and serve as a model of developing long-term individual relationships, according to online marketing expert John Ramptom.
Nonprofit grant writers spend a fair amount of time researching their prospects; it’s not a far stretch to think that large foundations might dedicate just as much time to staying apprised of potential grant recipients. If the person reading a grant appeal is familiar with an organization – and their impressions are positive – then the nonprofit is already at an advantage in the quest for funds.
Here are some tips for developing a solid social media strategy:
Stay with the audience
Nonprofits should approach social media as a conversational, two-way street. Readers should be at the core of that conversation. Talking too much about oneself creates the least effective social media content. Kairay media suggested an effective rule: Eighty percent of online writing should speak to the audience, rather than about the nonprofit. This not only gives readers a reason to stay interested, but serves as an invitation to be a part of the organization’s mission.
Speaking of staying interested, a lively writing style matters. Even if readers’ values are in line with the nonprofit’s, they’re not going to feel inspired for long in the face of dull reading. Using business management software analytics will help highlight which social media posts are successful and, in turn, lead to a more solid plan of action for future content.
Personal, powerful stories are a tried-and-true content strategy but even these can be repetitive if the format isn’t switched up. Holding a brainstorming session can result in a handy editorial calendar – a trusty tool against writer’s block, in addition to preventing circuitous content.
A fantastic way to keep readers from boredom is to solicit feedback through interactive polls or quizzes. These tools operate as fun games and provide a sincere space for sharing the voices of loyal readers. Document management software can manage the data collected, which can further fine-tune analytics.
Interactive conversation also means that nonprofit writers keep learning, instead of getting too comfortable and writing boring or sloppy grant applications, said Lyndsey Hrabik, social media strategist for Nonprofit Hub.
While it’s not wise to inundate readers with too many posts, it can also be a detriment to post too infrequently. Readers want a consistent flow of new material, but also need time to digest what they’re reading. In other words, social media content calls for equal parts quality and quantity. For long-form content, posting no more than twice a day is a reliable rule of thumb; tweets can be sent more frequently, if they’re spaced throughout the day.
Even more important – organizations should always respond to individual questions and posts coming in through social media. Proving to the readers that their voice matters is the surest way to gain loyalty.