At a time when social media and digital marketing are more important than ever, Skilled Volunteer and Founder of Social Media Marketing Agency, White Bee Digital, Aggie Meroni shares 4 ways Social Good Organisations can improve their online presence.
A lot has changed in the last 12 months (to put it mildly). With everyone stretched to their limits both personally and professionally, the third sector has had to find ways to adapt, so they can continue to offer support to the most vulnerable. This added pressure has often been with less time, funding and people power.
The role of social media has grown within organisations as a free way to keep in touch with those who are socially distancing, as a way to keep their volunteers and staff up to date and even to generate lost fundraising income.
With so many demands on your time, suddenly relying on social media to find the people that need your help can be overwhelming. Where do you even start?
I find it best to divide and conquer and have laid out the various steps I recommend below:
1. Know your audience
Probably the most fundamental consideration and often overlooked. Who are you looking to connect with? Do you know which social media platform they will most likely be present on? You only need to show up there. Less is more.
2. Shake up your content
Not sure what I mean or where to start?
I see it often on charity accounts that content can revolve a lot around similar posts. This can be announcements about fundraisers or logistical posts about services being open or paused, for example.
Variety is the spice of life and the same applies to social media content. Here is how I break this down:
Organise your content into topics. Four is enough e.g.
1. Fundraising updates. Do you have events you are promoting? This is one type of content.
2. Logistical announcements e.g. we can’t open today due to a power cut etc
3. Positive posts of support or humour. You need to entertain your audience as well as inform them. It will mean people look out for your posts and share them or engage with them. One tactic to grow your audience is to share posts from other pages with the same audience. It tells Facebook who to show your content to and makes it visible organically to people that are more likely to be interested. Word of warning though – share the whole post so that it is credited to the original page. Stealing content and claiming as your own is not only bad practice but couldput you in breach of copyright and make you liable. It will also mean the algorithm can’t pick up which new people the post should be shown to
4. Educational – what are the challenges / misconceptions about the community you support. Remember to also experiment with different types of content. From single images and photos to gifs and videos. The variety will keep your audience interested and help you stand out in people’s feeds as they scroll.
Fun fact: people scroll 300ft a day on their phones. Another reason to create stand out content to ‘stop the scroll’!
3. Schedule your content
Automation is your friend, whether you are a private business, individual or charity, it is more time efficient to schedule your content. Scheduling means you can plan and add all your content to a calendar ready to post automatically. A big benefit of this is your content can go out when your audience is most likely to be online. For most people, this will be in the evenings when your team will be off duty.
Top tip: you can schedule for free within Facebook now, across both Facebook and Instagram. Go to ‘Facebook Creator Studio’ to do this.
4. Free online resources
With budgets tight, knowing what free tools and resources you can use, can be a massive help and time saver for charities. I have listed a few of my favourites below:
- Canva: this graphic design software (website and app) has a free version and is easy to use even for beginners. Input your brand colours and fonts to make social media graphics for your profiles. If your charity can budget the small monthly fee for the paid version on this website, I would recommend it. You can then save your logos, brand colours and fonts in a branding kit, meaning you do not need to re-enter them every time you need to create new assets. This is a big time saver for a small fee.
- Unsplash and Pixabay: these websites host images and photography that can be used for free. ALWAYS credit the artist or photographer in your social media post. This free publicity and exposure for the work is the trade off with your being able to use their work. One point to bear in mind, some images are overused, and your audience may be bored of seeing the same images across the internet. Taking your own photos and creating your own content will always resonate the most with your audience.
- Mojo: this is a great app for creating Instagram Stories. There are free templates to use on the app as well as a small fee for an upgrade to the premium version.
Navigating social media and knowing how to get the biggest return for your time and money can seem like a minefield. For more tips and to keep up to date on all the developments, feel free to follow me on: www.instagram.com/whitebeedigital or you can find me at: whitebeedigital.com