Want a Winning Social Media Strategy? Take This First Step!

It’s Social Media month – and we’re helping nonprofits craft a smart social media strategy! What do you really need to know? 

  • How can your social media strategy bolster fundraising?
  • How do you use social channels to strengthen relationships with donors and supporters?

Today we have a guest post from the very smart Brittany Oat of BSocialStrategy.com.

Brittany is one of our guest experts for our upcoming webinar series: Social Media Success For Fundraisers.(Don’t miss this if you and your team need to hone a smart social strategy, tell better stories on social media and master Facebook!)

She’s a major social media strategist – and she’s taught me how to max out my own time and energy on social.

In fact, I had Brittany on my Facebook Live this week to share some of her social media secrets. Here’s the video of our convo: 


Here’s Brittany’s guest post with her expert tips: 

Would you put your messy desk on display for all your donors, advocates, board members and volunteers to see? Of course not!

So, why do nonprofits continue to have sloppy social media channels out there for the world to see that lack strategy, direction and mission?

Your social media strategy presence is a direct reflection of your organization.

If you want to max out your visibility and bring in more donations, your social media channels must be buttoned up.

I’d like to challenge you to carve out a few hours over the next few weeks to tackle this social media cleanup.

Whether you plan to develop a social media strategy and post regularly or not, having a polished presence will improve your SEO, drive more conversations and, ultimately, donations.

Here are the key tasks for your social scrub:

Clean up Your Act

Profile Picture:

All of your social media channels need a profile picture. Many organizations choose to use a logo, but sometimes logos can be hard to read when they are just a tiny thumbnail on an iPhone.

Handshake | Gail Perry

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Choose a clear, compelling image – logo or photo – that represents your organization.

Cover art:

Your cover art should also be refreshed regularly. It should never be covered in graphics or logos. Select a captivating image that tells your story.

On Facebook, you can opt for a slideshow or, preferably, a video as the header. Take advantage of that feature! 

Pay attention to SEO:

Did you know social media can positively impact your SEO? Make sure your “About” section is fully filled out with rich keywords.

It’s also critical to include your organization’s URL, address and phone number. How else will people donate?

Your “Handles”:

Make sure your “handles” match on Twitter and Instagram. And, make sure you have a vanity URL for Facebook and LinkedIn that also matches.

For example, my Instagram handle is @bSocialStrategy and my Facebook URL is Facebook.com/bSocialStrategy.

A Smart Content Strategy:

If you’re planning to create a social media strategy (which you should), a content strategy will be an important component. Sometimes, your old posts won’t fit your new “strategy.”

Take some time to scroll through your pictures, videos and newsfeed, and delete any content that doesn’t embody your organization’s mission or philosophy. 

It’s All About Community 

Fake followers?

Have you paid for followers on social media in the past? That’s NOT a good practice and you may have fraudulent fans/followers as a result.

For the sake of building a quality community, you should do a periodic purge of fake fans. Fake followers can also skew your paid advertising efforts and cause them to fail.

Following too many people?

On Twitter and Instagram, you may have followed a bunch of people in hopes of getting followers back. You want to make sure you maintain a 1:3 ratio of “Following” to “Followers”.

For example, if I have 3,000 followers I should have no more than 1,000 people I’m following. If someone isn’t a member of the media, influencer, major donor, important volunteer or partner organization…purge!

Use lists:

For the folks you do keep following on Twitter, consider putting them into private lists. All of my clients have lists for “media”, “community”, “donors”, “volunteers”, etc.

This is helpful when it comes to engaging with specific communities, year-end outreach and ad campaigns.

Also, make sure to engage with these folks on a regular basis – LIKE, comment and SHARE their content. 

Checking messages often:

When is the last time you check your messages? When I first acquire an organization’s social media channels to manage, they often have dozens…even hundreds…of unopened messages.

These are missed opportunities to start a conversation with a potential donor or volunteer! Answer your messages and stay on top of them daily.

The same goes for comments on posts from the last 6 months – it’s never too late to start a conversation.

Stay Organized

Weekly maintenance:

To keep things from getting out of hand again, schedule time each week for social media maintenance.

Keep a checklist handy, so you don’t forget to read all your messages and comments, follow/unfollow people and engage with your community. 

Schedule your posts out:

You can also schedule your posts and re-Tweets ahead of time to avoid inconsistent posting.

Consider a free option like Hootsuite or my personal favorite paid option – Sprout Social.

BOTTOM LINE: Creating a smart social media strategy: 

Go thru the basics of this social cleanup. Get organized. Now you’ll be prepared to build and implement a winning social media strategy – one that will amplify your message to your donors and supporters. 

And don’t forget to register for our webinar series September: Social Media Success for Fundraisers.

You’ll learn the secrets of today’s social world, where to focus; how to tell your story on social, how to master the big bugaboo, Facebook – and I’ll show you how to do Facebook Live!