As social media becomes more and more integrated in our lives, each social networking platform becomes associated with our real-world environments. Facebook and Instagram are often where we chat with friends and family, share experiences, and talk about dogs, cats and food; all very similar to what we do at home. LinkedIn on the other hand is where we talk about business, maximise networking opportunities with new connections, look for other jobs, and share news; all very much like being at the office. And Twitter is the pub, where we let our hair down (for those of us that have any), talk freely with friends as well as complete strangers, drop quick comments and engage in short snappy conversations.
The environment and atmosphere at the bar is why Twitter is the ideal platform for charities to talk about their campaigns and engage with other users.
Fundraising on Twitter – the influence of the microblogging platform
Unless you have been hiding under a rock, you’ll be aware that Twitter is one of the ‘big 5’ social media platforms, and should be an essential social media tool for your charity to raise awareness and maximise your fundraising potential. One of the biggest fundraising days of the year, #GivingTuesday, is a product of Twitter’s influence on the nonprofit world. #GivingTuesday is all about supporting and celebrating Britain’s charities and is growing bigger and better each year; and currently boast a world record – most money raised online for charity in 24 hours.
Just like at your local bar where you could engage with people from all walks of life, from a charity fundraising perspective, Twitter is an amazing way to engage potential donors, fundraisers, volunteers, friends and advocates because of the audience diversity. Appreciating other people’s characteristics and interests is relatively simple via their profiles, but also by what they tweet and retweet.
Fundraising on Twitter is all about relationships
For most users and especially charities, Twitter is just the platform. The reason and motivation for using it is relationships. Twitter is just one more tool to help people connect and form relationships with each other. But what about fundraising? One of the key fundraising secrets is that people give to people. They don’t have to know that person to give, simply have a connection, or a basic empathy or relationship. If you’re running or part of a charity you’ll already know that your biggest donors are those that already know you. Maybe now is the time for you to embrace Twitter and start forming relationships. Pint anyone?
Fundraising on Twitter – 5 Twitter tips for successful charity fundraising
1. Promote your own content as well as others
If your charity is producing regular, quality content on a website then make sure to tweet out your articles on a consistent basis. Your audience will come to expect posts, occasionally check back on your Twitter page, and then be directed back to your website. Ultimately you’re looking to drive your audience towards your website where they can continue their journey and hopefully engage with your primary calls to action. In the case of fundraising this is likely to be your donate or contact page.
Posting carefully selected content from other sources in addition to your own will validate your charity as a trusted source of relevant news. Adding variety builds interest and enhances engagement, and not always talking about your own charity will result in your content getting shared and achieving greater reach.
2. Tweeting live at events
Live tweeting at events is a great way to maximise the exposure of your charity, and push messages and content which are relevant at that particular moment, as well achieve post event longevity. Whether the event is specifically about fundraising or not, the content from it can be the most engaging you publish.
Plan ahead of the event and schedule pre-defined tweets in advance to help efficiency. During events take photos and publish your tweets including images for impact, and @mentions of event attendees to further relationships and potentially increase reach.
3. Twitter polls
Twitter polls are an exciting way to engage your audience by asking a question and polling your followers for answers. Ideally ask for ideas on fundraising campaigns and get feedback from your last event.
4. Listen and engage
As a social media platform, Twitter has given charities a voice to tell the world about their cause. But remember that the purpose of your social media involvement on Twitter is to create and nurture relationships. Lend your voice to other relevant Twitter conversations and encourage others to do the same; or search, listen and respond to other tweets particularly with people with the characteristics and interests which are related to your cause.
5. Monitor your Twitter Analytics
Twitter Analytics offers valuable insight about your account activity and the performance of your tweets. Analytics include ‘impressions’ which identify how many people see your tweet; ‘engagement’ showing how many people click or interact with your tweet; and ‘engagement rate’ which is engagement divided by impressions. Keep an eye on these metrics by exporting the data into spreadsheets and tracking which type of tweet or content topics have the most success.
If you need help with a content strategy to drive effective fundraising on Twitter, or simply need help growing Twitter relationships, contact Oxfinder on firstname.lastname@example.org