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Four Nonprofit Social Media Rookie Errors

Does the idea of effective use of social media make your head hurt? Are all the #hashtags and tweets and likes starting to blur? I’m afraid you’ll need to get over it.

You know the advantages of social media: opening the communication channels with old and new fans, raising brand awareness, improving web traffic, etc…but how do you keep social media from becoming your worst nightmare? Whether your organization is new to social media or you have more followers than you can keep track of, prevent supporter groaning due to rookie mistakes.

Rookie Error #1: Infrequent Posts

Does your organization only post something on social media once every couple of weeks? Are there frequent gaps between new posts on your page? You are not alone. So often nonprofits find themselves with not enough time and resources to maintain a constant presence on their social media sites. BIG MISTAKE! How will you gain new followers if you never say anything? Make it a part of your day to check in on your social media pages, even if it is to just say hi. Your followers will appreciate knowing that you are still around and your chances of gaining new followers will increase.

Rookie Error #2: Posting the Same Exact Content on Facebook & Twitter

Sure, we know that each social media channel is different. So why do we insist on treating them the same? Some organizations find it more efficient to link their Facebook and Twitter accounts and post the same stuff in both places, but this is not recommended. Twitter users – by design – are accustomed to seeing many (many) tweets throughout the day. Tweets are meant to be short and sweet, and should convey a sense of “this is happening now.” Facebook posts on the other hand are generally longer. One daily post is usually enough. Each social media site is its own unique community, and you should be crafting your posts accordingly.

Rookie Error #3: Using Social Media for Appeals

Sure, nonprofits rely heavily on donations. If every single post is asking for money, you are isolating a lot of your followers. Social media can be a useful tool to build donor relationships. Above all else, social media is a communication tool. Say thank you to recent donors with a post or a tweet! Engage your followers by posting interesting and informative content. Your organization has a lot to offer, and you should show that off by lending your expertise!

Rookie Error #4: Ignoring Comments

Now that you are posting all sorts of interesting things on social media, you can be sure that followers will have things to say in response. When you get a comment or a question – answer it! This conveys your attention on the community and it can go a long way in creating a true shared space. Encourage readers to engage, whether by commenting, liking, sharing, retweeting…the more people you can reach, the better!

Remember to avoid these four rookie errors, and your social media will be a roaring success! Firefly Partners has some great examples on our site – why don’t you hop over and take a peek?

Got other rookie errors to add to our list?  Join the party and add a comment!


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