Facebook & Organizations: Have a Plan
If a nonprofit is looking to take a first step into the the social media world, a Facebook page may be the best option for exposing an organization to a broad audience in the shortest amount of time. However, make sure you have a plan in place to maximize returns and keep your page from becoming, like so many, another static online snapshot of a failed endeavour.
Use as a Discussion Tool
Facebook is a great resource for almost instant feedback on a variety of topics related to an organization. It’s an avenue for individuals to interact, but not all questions will generate big discussions. Think of facebook as a virtual water cooler, where conversations lend to the lighter side of topics. Seek feedback about an event, or input about new fundraising ideas. Questions looking for technical answers or detailed thoughts might best be saved for another resource like LinkedIn where the audience is of a more professional persuasion.
Keep Conversations Moving
Posing open-ended questions is great, but if you only ask a question and never respond to your audience, individuals will stop interacting. Simple responses go a long way. Also, make an effort to get your followers talking with each other by asking for opinions about other’s ideas and comments.
Understand Your Audience
Realizing each audience member will be interested in different facets of the organization makes for easier planning of content posts. Only focusing on fundraising and never highlighting other key points will alienate you from individuals interested in other aspects of your nonprofit.
In a perfect world you would be posting updates on Facebook several times a day and commenting on other pages as well. Time and staffing constraints will always be working against you, so making an effort to post once daily and responding to comments within the hour is a good starting point. If more can be done, and content stays compelling, consider devoting more resources and time to the campaign. Thriving on Facebook has the potential to enhance the reputation of an organization not only within a community, but also state, national and worldwide.