Crafting an Online Presence: A Guide to Nonprofit Social Media

by | Feb 1, 2021

More than 72% of adults in the United States have at least one social media account. These aren’t just people—they’re millions of opportunities for your nonprofit to have an impact on most of the country’s population.

If you’re looking to generate revenue for your nonprofit or spread awareness about a certain issue, you’re in need of nonprofit social media guidance.

We’re here to share exactly how to harness your nonprofit’s ability to make tangible progress using social media.

Nonprofit Social Media: The Basics

Before you even decide which platforms to use, you need to do two things:

  • Decide your goals (revenue, starting conversation, event attendance, sharing information)
  • Identify your audience

While your goals might be a combination of the above, and your audience may have a large demographic or age range, it’s important to strategize your social media before diving right in.

Below are a few categories your posts should fall into.

Hot tip: create a content schedule that posts different pieces of content. For example, you don’t want seven days in a row of community building posts. Mix it up by integrating informational posts, too!

Promoting Awareness

At the core of each nonprofit’s mission is education. Without sharing crucial information about the issue you’re combatting, your audience won’t see the value in the work you’re doing.

To get your audience engaged in the purpose of your organization, use statistics and infographics on Twitter or Instagram.

Build Community

Another way to generate a following on social media for nonprofits is to build a virtual community. Your followers want to feel like they’re a part of your movement, so let them in!

Do this by hosting live Q&As on Instagram or virtual forum meetings. Ask your followers to comment with a friend’s name or share their posts for more engagement.

LinkedIn is a great place to cultivate social networking for nonprofits, too, so try posting information there to gain a professional following. The cost of social network marketing is really just your time, so take a leap!

55% of the users who follow nonprofits on social media take action to benefit that organization. Considering some people use social media infrequently or just to share personal information, that’s a pretty great conversion rate!

Share Impact

Lastly, your followers want to know how your work is going. Be transparent and share statistics or stories with them!

Tell them how their donations are making your work possible. People respond well to stories, so get creative in how you share the information. Maybe have a volunteer of your organization or youth participant in your programming share the news!

Ideas for Nonprofit Social Media

Now that you have a sense of your goals and your audience, it’s time to get to it! Here are the top ideas for engaging social media posts that will get your nonprofit some well-deserved attention and donations.


Add Donation Buttons

Especially on Facebook and Instagram, it’s important to make it easy for your followers to donate to your nonprofit. Use Facebook’s charitable giving platform to show that you’re open to donations and encourage users to fundraise for you if they’re able.

Use Hashtags

Hashtags are the best way to get an organic following on social media, no matter the platform. Hashtags are like coding your content to get to the right people.

For example, if you’re sharing something for Giving Tuesday, use the #givingtuesday hashtag to show up in the feed. For more niche topics, use specific hashtags to get recognized, like #artmuseum, #omahaarts, or #donatenow.

Share Videos

If the rise of TikTok taught us anything, it’s that people love short-form videos. Some nonprofits have been taking advantage of this, and TikTok has even responded by adding certain features to support nonprofit fundraising.

Even if you’re not on TikTok, your nonprofit can still make short-form videos to educate the public on your mission.

For example, a museum can make a short video going through an exhibition or touring the building. A nonprofit focused on poverty alleviation can share statistics and footage from donation events or services they offer the community.

There are endless opportunities!

Develop a Style Guide

Using social media solidifies your brand. To build trust among your followers and any new communities, you have to have consistency across the board.

Even if you only have a couple of people managing your social media, develop a style guide with all the information someone new would need to create your content.

This could have a list of your researched hashtags, approved colors, and graphics, or resources for posting techniques. This will ensure that your voice and branding is cohesive for your followers.

Pro tip: Use a free design platform like Canva to keep everything branded and stored!

Use Stories

While many people enjoy perfectly curated content, it’s important to shake it up a bit by using stories on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

Use stories to show the day in the life of an employee or use engaging stickers like polls. This allows you to learn more about your audience and create fun content!

Keep up With the Times

Even if you use a content calendar to schedule content ahead of time, make sure that you’re keeping up with your platforms in between. Like, comment, and engage with other content and accounts you follow.

This helps the algorithms in these platforms see you as a contributor to the platform in multiple ways, instead of just posting.

As the events of 2020 and early 2021 have proven, it’s crucial that you keep up with what’s happening in the world. You don’t want your content to seem insensitive, so make sure your calendar is easy to adjust and that you’re flexible in what you post.

Going All-In on Social Media

If your nonprofit social media is ready to take off, congratulations! Using social media to get people interested in your work and cultivate new donors is a huge step towards furthering your mission as an organization.

When you’re ready, use these nonprofit social media marketing tips to gain new followers and keep them inspired by your work.

If you’re looking for more information on how to make your nonprofit successful, check out the rest of our blog.

We help nonprofits strategize their operations and services to be as efficient as possible. Check out our services and contact us for more information!


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