Navigating the world of social media is daunting enough when it’s your personal account. But navigating it as a nonprofit can be overwhelming in many ways. Some nonprofits use their social media platforms to ask for donations or inform people about their events, which is nice, but ineffective. Social media marketing must be executed with a clear and concise plan, or else you will not reap any benefit from it. So how should a nonprofit start in creating their social media strategy? Well, I am going to give you three easy steps to start designing a strategy that is tailored to your nonprofit.
1. Create Goals
Like I mentioned earlier, many nonprofits want to use their platforms to boost donations or to inform their audience of upcoming events. But achieving these items will be hard without knowing what goals to set. Going back to “Goal Setting 101,” we should recall what SMART goals are. If you don’t, here’s what it stands for:
• Specific: Your goal should be clear and concise
• Measurable: Your goal should have a metric to measure your progress
• Achievable: Your goal (and your expectations) should be reasonable
• Realistic: You should have the time and resources to achieve your goal
• Timely: Your goal should have a time frame in which it should be achieved
Keeping this in mind, you can create goals for your nonprofit to achieve through its social media marketing endeavors. For example, if your nonprofit wants to increase brand awareness, a goal could be to increase social media engagement by 15% within the next three months. The most important takeaway in creating a goal is to determine how you are going to measure it. Here are some metrics your nonprofit can use:
• Engagement (likes, shares, mentions, and comments)
• Post Reach (the number of people who have seen your post)
For further reading on goal setting, I highly recommend reading this post on creating achievable social media goals by Sprout Social.
2. Establish Who Your Audience Is and Find Them
It is important to determine who your audience is from the start as it will help in creating the game plan to achieve your goals (see above). If you fail to know your audience and understand their habits, your nonprofit’s social media endeavors will be for naught. The most essential information about your audience is which social media platforms they are using. Where your audience is most active is where your nonprofit should focus its social media marketing activities. To start your research, the Pew Research Center’s yearly social media update breaks down the demographics of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest users.
3. Choose Your Voice
The last planning step in initiating your nonprofits social media marketing strategy is figuring out how you want to talk to your audience. Your “voice” is the combination of the character, tone, language, and purpose of your nonprofit. It is your nonprofit’s identity.
• Character: Your nonprofit’s personality that will resonate with its audience
• Tone: How you will convey your nonprofits character
• Language: The syntax in which you will communicate your tone
• Purpose: What you want to do for your audience
For a more elaborate break down of these, Crackerjack Marketing’s article on brand voice will be a huge help in discovering your nonprofit’s voice.
Although these are the most basic steps in developing a social media marketing strategy, they will be the most consistent part of your strategy. Remember, trends come and go. The most popular platform today will see its decline eventually. Although your strategy may shift from time to time, your nonprofit will always be able to realign itself accordingly.