Using Facebook to connect with volunteers & donors
In the past, nonprofits had few options with which to stay connected with their volunteers, and previous donors. Snail mail, phone messages, and later, email. But, none of these methods were immediate, or interactive. Even email, which can be sent in an instant, will sit idle until read – and might end up languishing in the SPAM folder.
However, social media has changed the dynamic of how to communicate with your donors, and stay connected with volunteers. How, and why has social media changed the game? Ronn Torossian, PR guru and president of 5W Public Relations, lays it all out right here:
#1 – Social media is interactive
Honestly, you could almost stop here. The very nature of social media is that it invites response, and encourages conversation. MUCH more than email, and light years ahead of the phone, or mail. Social media grabs people, and invites them to PARTICIPATE in the message.
#2 – The MEDIA in social media
Social media is much more than words on a screen. It can be video, audio, and pictures, too. People LOVE to interact with media. Particularly if that media includes them, or an event in which they took part. Posting photos, or videos is an outstanding way to get nearly immediate volunteer, or donor response after an event.
#3 – Control of the message
Even with the relatively open nature of social media, it is still mostly possible to control the message, and content of your page. Page administrators decide how an event is described, and whether or not certain comments are allowed to remain on the page. This combination of inviting conversation, and controlling content is unique to social media.
#4 – Show, don’t tell
There is a directive in all messaging that has become cliché: show, don’t tell. Simply put, this means showing something is much better than talking about it. Even if you are using words, explaining your content in a story format is the way to go. But, with social media, a combination of graphics, video, and text is a great way to enhance your “tell” in order to create a “show.”
Remember, a tool is only as useful as the way you use it. Don’t leave opportunity on the table when it comes to social media. Utilize this powerful tool for all it’s worth.
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