Social Media Communication Plan for Nonprofits

Tax Professionals' Resource
June 27, 2014 — 7,607 views  
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Social Media Communication Plan for Nonprofits

Nonprofit organizations have always faced a seemingly uphill battle when it comes to getting the message out about their mission, their impact on the community, and even their needs in terms of financial donations or other resources. One of the best ways to overcome this obstacle is by embracing the numerous social media websites that have come to dominate interpersonal and online communication. With the right plan in place, nonprofit managers can gain access to tens of thousands of people, or even more, who believe in the mission of their organization and are willing to lend a helping hand in any way they can. Five key aspects of this plan will ensure its long-term success.

1. Create a Way to Judge Success

A plan is no good if it doesn't work, and there's a high likelihood that an initial social media plan might fall short of expectations. That's just the nature of embracing a new medium for communication with the community. Even so, the key is to have a system in place that tracks whether or not the social media campaign is performing as expected or could use a few modifications. There are a few ways to actively monitor this:

- Use Built-In Stats: Facebook and Twitter offer built-in features that show how many people are reached by a single tweet or status update. The same stats show how many people like the page, how many found it organically, and how many repeatedly visit the page in order to learn more about the company.

- Measure Website Visits and Phone Calls: If more people are clicking and calling as a result of social media, primarily those who had never done so prior to the campaign, it can probably be deemed a successful attempt. Otherwise, changes may be needed.

2. Create Fun Posts that Deserve Sharing

The key to success in social media is to create a post that people want to share on the organization's behalf. This, in effect, expands the reach of the nonprofit and does some of the "leg work" without any additional effort or costs. Create posts that are funny, quirky, cute, or controversial, and watch their impact on the nonprofit's reach and familiarity.

3. Interact with Interested Social Media Users

Social media is a two-way street. While the nonprofit needs to create viral, interesting posts that reach a large audience and go viral, they also need to make themselves available when people interact and comment. A nonprofit that seems approachable, friendly, and ready to bring everyone into the fold, is one that has a successful social media campaign and long-term viability.

4. Hire a Social Media Manager

This doesn't necessarily need to be an external hire, but someone within the nonprofit should be charged with having primary responsibility over analytics monitoring, creating new posts, and interacting with users. This gives other people in the organization someone to report to, and it centralizes authority in a way that builds a more effective campaign over time.

5. Schedule Posts in Advance and Be Consistent

Consistency is the biggest part of social media outreach. If a business posts something in the first week of March, and then in the second week of March, but falls silent all the way until June, they're failing their audience. People will lose interest and look elsewhere to meet the same needs or provide the same services. Posts should be scheduled in advance, on a regular schedule, so that users know what to expect and interact regularly.

Excellent Opportunities Exist in Social Media for Nonprofit Groups

Overcome the budgetary hurdles of nonprofit management can be a challenge, but gaining greater community recognition will help ease that process. With excellent social media resources and a long-term plan to conquer the medium, nonprofits can boost their fortunes dramatically over time.


Tax Professionals' Resource