Social media marketing is an incredibly useful tool nonprofits can use to meet their fundraising goals, educate their audience on their mission and goals, promote events, increase engagement among their followers, hit their volunteer quotas, and reach younger audiences. But how can executives at nonprofits achieve all this through social media, especially if they feel out of touch with social media?
The first step to creating a successful social media presence is creating a marketing plan. Your marketing plan outlines what you hope to accomplish with your social media presence, as well as how you plan to meet your goals. Regardless of what you’re trying to achieve, you’ll always want to think about, “What is my message and why does it matter”? Your plan should also outline who your target market is, and what it is you’re trying to make them do, whether that’s getting them to follow you or having them sign up to be a volunteer.
To create your marketing plan, here are our best tips!
Identify your Target Market.
When identifying your target market, you’ll want to figure out who you want to reach with your ads in relation to your organization’s goals. So, for example, if you’re an organization trying to mitigate the risk of climate change, and it’s your goal to increase the number of volunteers, you would likely be targeting college-educated people aged 18-25 since that demographic is more vocal about climate activism.
To further build your target market, you should create an “avatar” or “an ideal customer” which includes demographics like age, gender, average salary, geographic location, and behavioral trends.
Which Platforms Best Align with your Target Market
Once you’ve identified your target market, you’ll then want to think about what social media platforms they use the most and how they interact with the platform. Here is a list of the most popular platforms and a little about their demographics to help you pick the best platform for your organization:
- Facebook: a platform owned by Meta, is one of the most popular social media platforms, despite the platform’s recent bad publicity and decline in monthly users. The platform allows organizations to create pages and share updates, photos, and videos with their followers. Facebook also offers various fundraising and event promotion tools, making it a valuable platform for nonprofit organizations.
- Age group: 35-64.
- Gender: 43% female, 57% male
- Instagram: a platform also owned by Meta, is a visual-focused platform that is popular among younger users. Nonprofits can use Instagram to share photos and videos that showcase the work of their organization and the people they serve.
- Age group: 18-34
- Gender: 48.4% female, 51.8% male
- TikTok: a platform that allows users to create and share short videos, typically ranging from 15 to 60 seconds. You can create quick, entertaining videos highlighting your work and the impact your organization has on your community. Additionally, nonprofits can use TikTok to showcase the people behind their organization and give their audience a glimpse into what it’s like to be part of their team. This can help humanize the organization and make it more relatable to your audience. However, it’s essential to recognize that the recent bans placed on the app by the House of Representatives could negatively impact people’s perception of the app.
- Age group: 10-19 (25%)
- Gender: 61% female, 39% male
- Twitter: is a microblogging platform that allows users to share short messages, or “tweets,” with their followers. Nonprofits can use the platform to share news and updates, engage with other organizations and individuals, and promote events and campaigns. However, since Elon Musk’s takeover of the platform, it has received mixed reviews, and plenty of media attention, which resulted in some companies halting their advertisement budgets. It will be important to monitor future changes to the platform.
- Age group: 18-49 (42%)
- Gender: 38.4% female, 61.6% male
- LinkedIn: is a professional networking platform. Nonprofits can use LinkedIn to share updates about their organization, connect with potential donors and partners, and share job opportunities.
- Age group: 25-34 (58.4%)
- Gender: 48% female, 52% male
- YouTube: is a video-sharing platform that allows organizations to share videos with a broad audience. Nonprofits can use YouTube to share educational videos, promotional videos, and other types of content that showcase their organization’s work. YouTube also has a live stream broadcast feature that is great for hosting large meetings or events.
- Age group: 16-64
- Gender: 46% female, 54% male
Make your Social Media Content Stand Out
Now that you know who you’re marketing to and on which platforms, it’s time to make content for your social media channels. It can be understandably hard to make “good content” for social media since there are so many ways to create content these days. So, to make it easier, here are our tips to making great social media content.
- Create a content strategy with your intended target audience and organizational goals in mind. To do this, you’ll want to ask yourself questions like, “Who is my buyer, and what social media platform are they most likely to use based on their demographics?” and “What am I trying to achieve with my marketing efforts? Is it getting more likes and shares or getting more followers”? Your answers to these questions will help you create relevant content that aligns with your marketing strategy.
- Use visuals and text to grab people’s attention and make your content more engaging.
- Engage with your followers and encourage them to share your content. You can do this in many ways, like asking questions in your posts, responding to comments, and sharing content that you think is important. This will help to foster a sense of community around your organization’s cause.
- Use social media ads to reach a broader audience and drive traffic to your website. With the help of targeted ads, you can reach potential supporters who may not already be following your organization on social media.
- Share stories through short videos. The most effective way to use video on social media is to share stories about the people your organization serves. This could include stories about how your organization has made a difference in someone’s life or a volunteer’s perspective. It’s important to note that your videos don’t have to be professionally filmed or even perfect. Feel free to use your phone to record videos; many people do that. It can help you come off as genuine, and people will respond positively to that.
- When making a video for social media, keep it short. Users today have short attention spans, so keeping your videos short, concise, and to the point is essential. Your videos should be 1-2 minutes in length and should focus on delivering one key message.
- Create explainer videos: If your organization does something complex consider creating an explainer video that breaks down the concept simply in an engaging way. This can help to make your work more accessible and understandable to a broader audience.
Overall, the key to successful social media marketing for nonprofits is to create engaging, relevant content that resonates with your target audience and aligns with your organization’s goals. By following these tips, you can effectively use social media to raise awareness about your organization and engage with potential supporters! If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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