When social media became a primary way for nonprofit organizations to raise awareness, many jumped on the bandwagon without a clear direction for their social media efforts.
This lack of vision ultimately lead to feelings of confusion, overwhelm, frustration, and no idea how (or where) to start over.
Here are 17 ways nonprofits can utilize Facebook’s features thoroughly so their page performs from head to toe:
1. Fill Out Every Section of Your Profile
Thoroughly fill out each section of your profile, and do your best to organically incorporate keywords for a higher Facebook and search engine ranking.
Include things like your mission statement, a brief (but colorful) description of your organization, your contact information, and calls to action to encourage visits to your website and other social media accounts.
2. Choose a Specific Facebook URL
Make the URL you choose for your Facebook page the name of your organization, or the same username as the rest of your organization’s social media accounts.
This will keep your branding consistent, and will give your fans an address that’s easy to remember.
3. Keep Your Facebook Page Permissions Open to the Public
By allowing new visitors to see your page’s content before they “like” you, they’ll be able to make an informed decision about becoming a fan.
(Side note: make your content so compelling they won’t be able to refuse!)
4. Offer Exclusive Content to Facebook Fans
That being said, make sure to also offer exclusive content to your fans. The more enticing the exclusive offers are, the more “likes” you’ll encourage for your organization’s page.
5. Use Your Logo as Your Profile Photo
Use your organization’s logo as your profile photo, or use the image that’s consistently showcased throughout the rest of your nonprofit’s social media accounts.
You want to make sure your profile photo is instantly recognized as being connected to your organization.
6. Update Your Cover Photo Regularly
Use images that clearly define what your nonprofit stands for; either an action shot, a candid shot, or an image that evokes a strong emotion.
Coincide your cover photo with fundraising campaigns and exciting events as they relate to your cause.
7. Offer Facebook Cover Photos To Your Fans
As part of your exclusive fan “gear,” create cover photos your fans can use on their personal profiles to show they support your organization, and offer them for specific campaigns as well.
(Here are examples of excellent Facebook cover photos created specifically for fans.)
8. While Engaging, Always Post As Your Organization
On Facebook pages you’re the admin of, you can either post as yourself, or as your organization. For branding consistency and exposure purposes, always post as your organization.
9. Create an Editorial Calendar for the Page
After deciding the primary focus of your organization’s Facebook page, create an editorial calendar of the content you’re going to feature.
By planning what you’re going to post in advance, you’ll ensure each and every post is targeted, on point, and will inspire your fans to participate in your cause.
10. Post Regularly
Quality over quantity: only post 2-3 times per day, and don’t post for the sake of posting. Always make sure the content is relevant and engaging.
11. Engage With Stories
Stories are a nonprofit’s best friend. They share your cause, they evoke emotions, and they get people talking.
Stories to include on your Facebook page might include testimonials, photos that show what your donations go toward, finished projects your organization has been working on, and news about your cause at large.
12. Use Facebook Page Features For Specific Types of Content
Thoroughly learn about each feature your Facebook page has to offer (milestones, pinning, highlighting, promoted posts), and decide how your organization can best utilize them.
You don’t want your page to be robotic, but you do want to create some form of consistency your fans can depend on.
13. Give Your Readers Variety (But Not For the Sake of It)
Experimenting with different types of content will help you gauge which content is most welcomed by your fans. For example:
- Blog posts
- Charity-related product listings
- Quotes from supporters
- Calls to action (in any format)
You want to engage with as many fans as possible – some might prefer blog posts, some videos, some images – but you don’t want to string yourself so thin in trying to cater to everyone that you end up compromising your overall image.
You also have to enjoy what you’re sharing. The more you enjoy creating the content, the more fans you’ll attract because of your authenticity and originality.
14. Use Your Facebook Page to Grow Your E-mail List
While you want your fans to engage regularly on Facebook, you ultimately want them to become ongoing supporters outside of your social networks.
Use your Facebook page to convert your followers to e-mail subscribers. This will ensure that no matter how many times Facebook updates their EdgeRank algorithm, your supporters will always receive your most important news.
Keep the process simple, so they can quickly sign up. (For example, only ask for their first name and e-mail.)
15. Use Subtle Strategies to Encourage Engagement
We’ve become a society of scanners: information is thrown at us all day, every day. In order to keep up with what’s most important to us, we scan first, read second.
We want to interact more, we want to be supportive, but only have time to do so in quick jolts.
Here are some classic examples of how to encourage engagement in a casual, fun way:
- Ask a fill-in-the-blank question.
- Post a photo as it relates to your cause, and ask your fans to think of a caption.
- Post an image as it relates to your cause and ask people to share if they’ve been impacted by the same issue.
- Share posts from your organization’s sponsors and tag them in the post.
- Have your fans share stories with you: what’s their favorite type of fundraiser? Why is your cause so important to them? Encourage them to share their contribution to your cause in interesting ways. The sky’s the limit!
- Post interesting trivia about your cause.
- Post answers to questions that have been e-mailed/private messaged to your organization, and encourage more questions.
16. Use Periodic Calls to Action
It’s okay to ask your fans to “like,” share, or comment on your content, just don’t make a habit of it. Save this request for extra special posts that deserve the notoriety.
If you make it a constant habit, your fans won’t feel compelled to help you out because you always ask.
17. Rinse and Repeat What Works
After you’ve been running your page for a solid amount of time, check out your Facebook insights and analyze how your content is doing.
- Which post formats are the most popular?
- Which posts received the most comments?
- What did the posts have in common?
- Which calls to action received the highest response?
Take an hour or so per month to gauge your content. This will help you plan your editorial calendar and tweak your posting process.
What Facebook tips would you add to this list?
Enhance your nonprofit’s Facebook page even further with the Social Caffeine ebook, 10 Commandments for Raising Money for Non-Profits on Facebook. Download your copy from Amazon here. Amazon UK users: get your copy here.
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