Social media has changed so many aspects of our lives, and charity is no different. Via social media, organizations have new ways to market, and those who are willing to give can do so in more ways than ever before. For those who can’t give financially, social media allows them to lend support in other ways.
Anyone who has ever seen a fundraiser on Facebook knows how social media brings allows philanthropy to become part of a person’s everyday life. You can donate for all your friends to see from a convenient link in a social media update. In fact, millennials prefer to give their money online.
Additionally, the greater Internet allows people to research organizations and how their money will be used, which means that organizations not only have to get on board with digital donations with the transparency that is now expected of them. Organizations that do not embrace these changes will miss out on those valuable charitable funds.
It’s important to remember that millions of small donations can have a significant impact, and nonprofits who overlook the average person as a resource will pay because of it. Consider the campaign strategy of then-senator Barack Obama, a presidential hopeful who raised $214 million in donations via crowdfunding, approximately 1/3 of his overall funds raised, to beat his opponent Mitt Romney who raised just $70 million from small donations and $384 million overall. Several years later, Vermont Senator Sanders ran for president and raised $73 million via crowdfunding with an average donation of just $27.16.
Nonprofits can also benefit when users share their fundraisers, essentially a type of free promotion. An organization’s marketing team should be active on social media, not just posting fundraisers or asking for money but showing where that money will go. The ability to add a photo or video content, including live content, only makes these organizations more visible on social networking sites. Nevertheless, it’s important to ensure these are to one-way conversations in which nonprofits are talking “at” social media users rather than engaging in discussion with them.
Organizations may even consider influence marketing to reach out to other demographics and engage social media users who follow their favorite celebrities, bloggers, and other influencers.