Social media has become an integral part of our daily lives. Almost everybody who has access to the internet also has an account in one of the many social media networks that exist. For this reason, NGOs should not pass the chance to use them for their causes as well. Today we will take a detailed look on Facebook and the many reasons, why NGOs should have a profile with this social network.
Facebook has over two billion users. Signing up for an account for you NGO gives you potential exposure to many people who otherwise would never get to know about your project. We have already talked about the importance of your website, but through a Facebook profile, it is much easier to get exposure for your work. To find your homepage, people already need to know about your organization or at least search for it with very specific terms. Facebook gives you more chances to share your work throughout your network and then through the network of your followers.
Direct Connection to your audience
Sometimes it is very difficult to get a direct connection to the people you want to work with or the ones you want to inform about your project. Facebook is a great way to get direct feedback for your work. If you post a picture, people will comment on it. If you post a link to your website, they will learn more about your project and share their thoughts in the comments. It is an easy and great way to find out if your project is creating a buzz or if no one is really interested in your work. You can ask questions and create a direct connection to your audience – something that is very important to deliver good work.
Facebook for Nonprofits – direct fundraising
You can also use Facebook for direct fundraising from your followers. Recently, Facebook has introduced a new feature to directly fundraise through their page. But there are also other ways to increase fundraising with the help of Facebook. You can post links to your fundraising or crowdfunding campaign or just ask for direct donations on in one of your updates.
Great tools – Messaging, Polls, and Feedback
Facebook offers several tools that you can use to present your work or to ask for funding. People can send you direct messages, you can prepare polls and have the opportunity to receive direct feedback for your work. If you use these tools, you can create a more direct connection to your audience and include them more closely in your work. People who have already been messaging with your organization are more likely to donate to your cause. If you are not sure how to roll out a new program, you can use polls to collect opinions and develop a strategy with the direct feedback of the people who might already have experiences in this field.
Share your work
Facebook is a very easy way to share your work with your beneficiaries or people who want to support you. Sometimes you only have a small update that would otherwise not make it to your homepage – facebook is the perfect medium for this. You can share pictures and short videos of your work and your progress and keep your supporters updated. If you end up writing an article on your homepage about the progress of your projects, you can link to this article and make sure that many people read it. Sharing work in progress makes your followers feel closer to the project and in the long run makes them more likely to support it.
Share your events
Facebook has a great feature to plan and share events with your audience. If you have a fundraiser, an informational event or the inauguration of your project – you can plan and share this on facebook and make sure that everybody who needs to know about it gets the information. You can even directly invite people via Facebook.
Connect with similar organizations
On Facebook, you can easily find other organizations that work in your field. If geographically or thematically – you can find people who fight the same problems and might want to partner up with you. Share your experiences and resources to make the best use of them.
Networking is very important in the world of fundraising. On Facebook, you can not only connect with other NGOs that could be potential partners but also with donors, professionals from your field and potential supporters. When you follow donors on social media, you will get to know much better what they actually want to fund and where their work leads them. Sometimes it can be a great way to get into contact when you comment and share posts and connect this way. Tagging partners and supporters make sure that you extend your network and let people know about your work and your connections.
Posting pictures and videos
Facebook gives you the possibility to easily post visual media – pictures and videos. These cannot always be posted to a similar extent on the homepage. If people have a real idea of your project, they are much more likely to support your project. Pictures and video are the perfect way to invite people to take a closer look and understand your project.
Share links about your project
On Facebook, you can also share links in an easy and appealing way. If it is articles from your own homepage or articles that have been written about your organization or your projects, you can share them with your audience and let everybody know what great work you are doing.
Can you think of any more reasons why NGOs should have a facebook page? I am sure there are more. But before you open your own Facebook page now – think about the time you want to invest in social media. There are many ways in which a Facebook page can benefit your NGO, but if you do not have the time to run it, it can also do more harm than good. To read more about this, please see this article.
What are your experiences with Facebook? Please share in the comments