Get Creative! with Nonprofit Social Media

posted by
Isaac Kiehl,
Communications Coordinator,

When starting out with social media as a nonprofit, it can be a tricky and confusing process. It’s not like the for-profit sector where you have a goal to gain customers through deals and offering products/services. It’s about your cause.  You now have supporters, donors, partners, and those directly affiliated with your organization to think about and cater to. Besides a website, the musts of nonprofit social media include a Facebook page and Twitter account. They provide an easy way for others to show their affiliation and support while being able to directly engage with the nonprofit. Your cause and organizational updates are able to become clearer and more regular through your messaging. I personally began employment at my first nonprofit, ICAN, a year ago, and this is how I’ve been able to make my social media mark on the brand.

The Facebook and Twitter pages had already been set up, but they were scarcely used. I re-evaluated the mission and audience of the organization and found a healthy mix.  As I began to post on a daily basis, I started including real-time photos and posts about events, donation thank you’s, and basic organization updates. Eventually, I began adding in “behind the scenes” posts about staff to make our brand include more than just the faces of those we serve, but also those who were providing service. Within a year, both the Facebook and Twitter followers more than doubled, and engagement increased almost 300%. I was surprised at how easy it was to post real-time happenings and how the engagement increased. When we switched from having our Facebook posts being automatically tweeted verbatim on Twitter to a tailored message for both platforms, Twitter engagement increased as well. It’s been well worth the extra 30 seconds to post a message twice, but customized for each.