New Year’s resolutions are usually about personal goals, but what if this year you resolved instead to advance the cause of your charity? First, we would applaud your selfless, inspired choice. Second, we would offer up 12 great ways Facebook can help you succeed.
1) Make giving easy with Donate call-to-action buttons
Calls to action help drive people to take actions that are important to your charity – such as subscribing or donating. A simple and effective way to raise funds is to add a donate button to your Page header. You can either collect donations directly on Facebook or send people to a website of your choice to donate.
2) Inspire supporters to create fundraisers for your cause
In 2016, Facebook launched Fundraisers. This powerful tool enables people to engage their communities and raise money for the causes they care about (Yours!). The tool has proven to be enormously popular, with USD 6.9 million raised via Facebook this past #GivingTuesday alone. Why? Friends like to help friends achieve their goals. Fundraisers allow your supporters to do just that, by sharing their personal stories, telling their friends about their favourite causes and building support around a specific fundraising goal.
3) Thank (and retain) donors in an engaging way
Sending thank-you messages to your donors is a best practice. Sending a video thank-you is an even better practice. There’s a reason why 74 per cent of social media marketers use visual assets in their social media marketing plans. It works! Video allows supporters to visualise your organisation’s impact. Thank-you videos aren’t just more likely to be watched, they’re more likely to be shared. Your video can be produced without breaking the bank, and it can be short. It should be short. You’re busy enough as it is!
4) Optimise your online content like never before
Optimising your Page will allow it to have the greatest impact. The key is to ensure your content is relevant and that it engages on a human level. Ways to do this is include: using Facebook to celebrate achievements and milestones; posting engaging behind-the-scenes photos, and showcasing where your organisation’s fundraising budget goes. You can also acknowledge donors and volunteers by highlighting, tagging and thanking them for their support.
5) Engage supporters using an immersive new format – Facebook Live!
Facebook Live brings people together through video in real time. This dynamic new medium has taken off, growing four-fold since last May alone. Charities use Facebook Live for field reporting, to host Q&As, mini-telethons and more. We’ll continue to improve the Facebook Live experience so you can put it to work for you.
There are several things to consider before you Go Live. Learn more here.
6) Engage your followers by delivering best-in-class support
How can you show your donors, volunteers and followers that you are grateful for their support? Answer every Facebook post on your Page! This simple step truly is one of the most effective ways you can demonstrate to the members of your community that you care what they think.
Get more ideas here.
7) Discover new ways Facebook can help make your vision a reality
Did you know Facebook offers a global training and certification programme? It’s called Blueprint and, while it may be geared toward the business community now, it offers a wealth of information your organisation can use to further its objectives. From online learning to live events to certification opportunities, Blueprint will give your organisation the tools it needs to grow.
8) Galvanise your organisation. Turn ideas into action.
Looking for a better way to communicate inside your organisation? Workplace by Facebook is free for charities and uses familiar features such as News Feed, Groups and Messages to foster greater collaboration and productivity. Charities like Save the Children rely on this user-friendly, ad-free platform to help them turn ideas into action and get more done.
9) Build awareness and grow your supporter base.
Facebook ads give your organisation direct access to people who are committed to helping it achieve its goals. You choose the objective and the audience, and Facebook delivers ads in a way that’s optimised to drive results. More charities are adding targeted advertising to their overall marketing mix. You can run ads on Facebook on almost any budget. Want to optimise your ROI? Incorporate the Donate button to make it easy for supporters to contribute!
10) Communicate efficiently with supporters
Did you know that over 1 billion people across the world are using Messenger? And more organisations are using this to communicate with supporters. Why? Messenger allows you to reach people instantly, expressively and even face to face. Add in useful tools such as group calling, and there’s no better way to engage with your constituents.
11) Promote live, in-person events in a dynamic way
Facebook brings people together in the real world with their friends like no other social media channel. This makes it the ideal platform for planning and promoting events. Email is fine, but it’s not as efficient. (You risk leaving somebody out.) Texting is convenient, but the format’s built-in limitations can hamper clean communication. Whether you’re getting the word out about a public event or sending invitations to a private one, Facebook Events makes organising easy.
12) Cultivate synergies between like-minded people
Facebook Groups allow you to optimise communication by connecting people with similar passions and goals. You can use groups to share exclusive updates, photos or events, and collaborate. It’s the perfect way to foster constructive exchanges between your supporters, coordinate activities with, or provide exclusive content to, the right groups of people.
The New Year is in full swing and your organisation’s fundraising needs won’t wait. If you are resolved to make 2017 your best year yet, we encourage you to take advantage of the 12 tools, tips and techniques outlined in this article. Leveraging the Facebook platform is a simple, proven way to improve your organisation’s fundraising performance and achieve its overall goals. And that’s great news for everybody!
Happy New Year (and even Happier Fundraising) from the Facebook Social Good team!