AFP – Social Media

It is critical to have a year-round social media relationship management approach to renew and grow donors, especially those acquired through web-based giving programs.

Start posting and tweeting your cause now… jump in!  If you don’t have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?  Learn by doing.

Based on top – down, here’s what social media NPOs are using the most …

1. Facebook
2. Twitter
3. YouTube
4. LinkedIn
5. Flickr
6. MySpace

  • Purpose for Facebook – engaging in dialogue is more important than the content presented, otherwise people would go to websites.
  • Purpose of Twitter – showing a way for people to want to learn more about your cause and guide them to your site

You should have a lot of engagement from your postings and tweets — otherwise, you’re just spamming.

“Twitter is about approach, transparency and immediacy” – Jack Dorsey, Twitter Co-Founder

Twitter could be especially useful for universal messaging during an annual fund or capital campaign … Get a campaign hash tag.

Your online voice is so important.  Dell’s company voice resonates authenticity through the voice of Lionel, the principle communicator.

Give your voice a rest and don’t use it all the time.  Ask thoughtful questions.  Then listen and learn and listen.

Tune into conversation patter by tagging key words and analyzing context.  Monitor with TweetDeck, Google alerts, Brizzly and other tools. Clear the time to communicate back to people.

Identify and track the frequent opinion-makers.  Pay attention to those with large following and also those who share your information.

Build advocates. You want to know what others are saying about your organization and participate in the conversation.  Get people to want to stick up for you.

Social media is a great mechanism for Board members to advocate and tell stories related to causes they believe in.

Stay knowledgeable.  Become human velcro – sniff out and share information that followers will easily adhere to.

Practice social media etiquette.

Converse with interaction.

  • Be polite, be present, follow along with what’s happening.
  • Contribute to discussion and then ask a question.
  • Act, don’t react/overact
  • Avoid reply/retweet wars
  • Promote corporate partners strategically and carefully
  • Forward others’ content

Other …

Follow people who follow you.  Respond to every request for information and then ask a question, i.e.,- any more help needed, etc.

Engage in dialogue – if people just wanted information, they’d go to your website.

Most demographic groups are interacting online after-hours and/or weekends.  Pre-set messages for these times, monitor and respond.

This is a challenge!  The online interactive world is 24-7.  Pre-set time-release of commentary/info is one way to go.  I’d love to hear other ways to keep in “high touch”.

Posted by: Linda Brown Rivelis, President