What makes a relationship so sweet? What makes it strong and last forever? Communication!
OK, fine, there’s a lot more to relationships than just good communication. However, if I mention them here, it would weaken the point of this blog post.
So, for this post, we will focus on communication. And where is a great place to communicate? Social Media!
Nonprofits have the most to gain from using this platform. Whether you post on a timeline, tweet your thoughts or Instagram a picture, this can be gold for your organization.
You already have a relationship with your donors. It may be small but it’s there. So, use what you have and connect to your base in a real way. Below are 5 suggestions that will make a big difference.
#1 – Be yourself. There are many nonprofits out there but there is only one you. You may be using social media for an organization but you still have your own personality. Let it come through in your messages. Your organization will develop a following through you.
Don’t be afraid to throw in your humor or a quirky saying. It makes readers know that a real person is interacting with them.
#2 - Mix it up. No one wants to read the same types of posts, pictures or memes all the time. Much like your friends don’t want to talk about the same things every time they see you. And I’m sure you don’t want to post the same way all the time. So, go nuts and mix it up.
Throw in a picture of your cat every now and then. Ask a question that has nothing to do with your normal posts but is something everyone can relate to, like “Is it true that gingers steal your soul? Asking for a friend.” It’s funny, lighthearted and will get people talking.
#3 – Ask questions. As I mentioned in suggestion #2, this is a great way to get people engaged on your page. You are inviting people to give their advice when you ask a question. You are telling them that they matter and you want to hear from them.
Not all questions have to be about the organization’s focus. All that matters is that people feel needed and their opinions are wanted. Remember, communication is the name of this game.
#4 – Listen and Respond. You are on social media after all. Respond to the comments after you ask a question, post a picture or mention something happening at your nonprofit. I personally love when someone replies to one of my comments. It’s then that I know someone is actually paying attention and they care about engaging with me.
And last but surely not least…
#5 – Give the people what they want. Get out there on social media and have fun. Surf Facebook and tweet often. Show off those pictures on Instagram. I’m not giving you permission to spend your entire life on there (or your workday). But you shouldn’t feel guilty when spending some time and enjoying yourself; especially when you’re doing it for something you believe in. You wouldn’t feel guilty if you gathered with your friends or chatted with a group of donors. It’s no different here.
Those are my 5 suggestions for building relationships through social media. They are all important and they build on each other. Try them and let me know how they work for you!