Social media can be of great value in using it to support your campaign.
The following tips will help you get the best out of fundraising on social media.
1. Have a policy
It’s wise to have a clear social media policy in place first. It’s important that social media posts are keeping in with the image of the organisation and don’t damage its reputation. Most cases you will have someone manage your social media and also allow others to post on your behalf. The policy will help define what they are allowed to say, and even how they say it – to maintain the voice of an organisation, rather than a group of individuals, a uniform tone is vital.
While social media runs 24 hours a day, it doesn’t have to consume all your time and distract from your other fundraising work. Scheduling tweets to post automatically using a facility like Tweetdeck or scheduling posts on your Facebook page will save time. There’s much debate about the best time of day to post in order to attract the most views but ultimately it depends on your organisation and your audience or supporters. Define your audience and try to work out when they are online the most, and schedule your posts around that time.
3. Don’t get distracted
Aim to focus on using social media as an extension of your fundraising strategy, rather than forming its core. Also, don’t just post about your fundraising activities. Talk about other news and developments in your organisation too.
4. Get the word out
Invite all your staff, volunteers and supporters to like and interact with your profiles. Likes, comments, shares and retweets will be seen by their friends as they appear on timelines and in news feeds – effectively advertising your cause. Include links to your social media accounts in email signatures, on your website and in any marketing or promotional materials.Similarly, link back to your website or fundraising home page when posting on social media.
5. Mix it up
Posting photos and videos can help you reach a wider audience – they’re more visually appealing and more likely to be shared. Experiment with different types of content and see what resonates with your audience. Then adjust your posts accordingly.
6. Don’t forget to say thank you
Social media offers a quick way to publicly recognise those helping to promote your fundraising efforts. You might even consider creating a thank you video. Videos can also show the impact of donations and create an emotional connection to your cause. It’s also a good idea to post your final fundraising total after your event has finished, plus information about how it compared to last year’s result and what you plan to do with the funds.
7. Follow the trends
Start following common Twitter hashtag and consider creating a hashtag for your fundraising campaign based on your name or theme. Using a consistent hashtag for the duration of the campaign will help brand your campaign and track interaction. Also try including generic hashtags such as #fundraising and watch which hashtags are trending. Getting yourself involved in a trending conversation may help your campaign be seen by a greater audience.
8. Stay top of mind
Social media is immediate so provide real-time updates on the progress of your campaign and how close you are to achieving your goals. Aim to post at least once a day during a major fundraising campaign and every couple of days in the lead up. Share photos of event preparation, news, milestones and statistics. There’s no need to post on the hour but posting regularly will keep your effort top of mind.
9. Share to be shared
If you want your posts to be shared, get involved in your community by sharing messages about others more than messages about yourself. Retweet other organisations’ posts whenever possible and share interesting web content relevant to your campaign. It will tire your supporters out if you’re always asking for support, so remember to be conversational and not come on too strong. And remember every interaction you receive should get a response, even if it’s just to say thanks.
10. Don’t just cut and paste
Each post should be customised to the specific platform. Twitter has a limit of 140 characters so you’ll need to keep it concise. Don’t waste characters by repeating previous tweets, but update regularly with short pieces of news. You can include more information in your Facebook posts and also embed photos, videos or links. You can also experiment with other sites such as Instagram, Tumblr, YouTube and Pintrest.
We hope these top tips will help you when fundraising on social media!
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