So everyone is on social media and they all keep telling you that you need to be tweeting, Facebooking, uploading your images to Soup, registered on Google + and adding new items to Pinterest at a rate of knots. And of course, ‘they’ are no doubt right. But before you launch into the world of social media there are a few key factors you need to consider:
1. Why are you doing this?
Do you want to reach new audiences; enhance your message through different channels; provide more opportunities for people to engage with what you are doing; raise money – what’s the end goal for you?
2. Who is your audience?
Are they donors; members; an entirely new audience; people you’ve lost contact with – think about who you are trying to reach and the how to do it will become easier to figure out and manage.
3. What’s your existing relationship with your audience?
Do they never hear from you or are they an active bunch (who are presumably currently frustrated that they can’t engage with you online)? Do they understand what you do or do they need to find out more through better more detailed content?
4. Who are you and what do you want social media to help you say about your brand?
Ideally, you want to use social media to help you to strengthen what you’re already saying but perhaps by using it to reach new audiences or communicate with existing audiences differently, giving them the opportunity to get involved and give their opinion or support online. Do you want to raise awareness of key external issues or do you need/want to promote your organisation and what it does?
5 And (my particular favourite being a fundraiser obsessed with results) how will you measure success?
There are a myriad of social media metrics out there and it’s up to you to decide which are the most important to you in terms of success.
By considering all of the above BEFORE you launch your social media strategy, not only will you be able to figure out whether or not what you are doing is actually achieving your objectives but, even better, you’ll also be able to manage your resources more effectively – ensuring that you’re not getting diverted and distracted by the vast, diverse world of social media but that you’re staying on task and focused.
Let us know if you need any help setting up your social media. There are also a few great sites with ideas and advice.