Most organizations that utilize volunteers tend to work on a shoestring budget. Not able to afford the more expensive gadgets and resources that a business might, it becomes necessary for these groups to use whatever they can to provide the most help to the most people. Sometimes, that means partnering with other organizations. Sometimes it means making volunteers raise money and solicit donations with their volunteer hours, just so they can procure the resources they need to help others with less time devoted to actually helping.
But there is a great tool at hand many volunteers should be taking greater advantage of, even though many have yet to avail themselves of. With the usefulness of social media resources, the face of volunteering is beginning to change, and 5W Public Relations firm’s CEO Ronn Torossian has four helpful tips for organizations to motivate their volunteers to make better use of social media.
Even regular social media users don’t always know the numerous uses of the technology. By offering training to volunteers, the organizations empower those who are donating their time. These volunteers are already working for causes they believe in, so show them how to forge their own paths in assisting others.
Showing someone how to tweet isn’t the same as telling them which things are most effective to tweet to recruit more volunteers and raise money or awareness for a cause. Show the volunteers the power they have in social media, and then let them take that power and blow through to the next level.
Provide Them With Mobile Resources
Not everyone has a smartphone or tablet, and not every volunteer wants to use their personal hardware when volunteering. Though they are helping out of the kindness of their hearts, not every person who donates time at a soup kitchen in New York City wants to bring their Galaxy S4 or iPad 2 along with them. Organizations should provide their volunteers with community phones and tablets, both for those who don’t have their own and for those who don’t feel comfortable using their own. That way they can take advantage of social media while helping.
Many organizations already reward dedicated volunteers with accolades from trophies and ribbons to naming buildings after them. Rewarding volunteers for using social media to help grow a cause, whether through soliciting donations, bringing in new volunteers, or simply raising awareness for the cause, these volunteers need to know that their hard work is appreciated and they bring a special skill. While most anyone can pick up trash, not everyone does. It’s the one who can motivate an entire college to clean a highway that is really deserving of accolades. The same can be said for using social media to raise thousands of dollars, or as a public relations tool to generate media interest in the cause.
Are you apart of a non-profit company looking to further your knowledge of social media usage? Here are 9 social media tips for nonprofits.