Introduction to Social Media for Non-Profits

Non-profit organizations thrive with the help of volunteers and donations. With the shift to a online world we see non-profit organizations with websites, but what about their use of social networking sites?

Social media has become most popular communication tool for today’s generation. Society uses these networking sites to connect with friends and families. Millions are visiting these websites everyday, and social media provides great opportunities to share and help promote non-profit organizations.

Why use social media?

ITS FREE!

“Free” is a great word for a non-profit organization to hear, because of limited budgets.  Social networking sites give organizations a free way to interact with viewers as well as a great free advertising tool.

The most popular social media sites include Facebook, Twitter, YoutTube, Flickr and WordPress– and they’re all free to join and use!

Each of sites has unique features that non-profit organizations can take advantage of.  For example on these sites you can…

  • write your status
  • post videos/ photos
  • write notes
  • connect with followers
  • keep followers updated

What is great about social media is that most of them allow you to sync together or feature other networking sites, allowing your followers to be able stay connected in many different ways.

To Write Love On Her Arms Twitter Page

To Write Love On Her Arms Twitter Page

To Write Love On Her Arms

In the best scenario, organizations can go viral on the web, like what happened to the organization, Write Love on Her Arms online campaign. On a specific day people changed their Facebook status to call attention to the issues of depression, self injury and suicide.

Natural Disasters

In times of crisis or a natural disaster, social media has become one the most popular way people are donating.

Social Media sites like Twitter were viewed as a credible news source and often ahead of news organization. Their real time post allowed people to share real time updates, photos and videos to the web.

In the wake of the Haiti earthquakes, Twitter exploded with photos and updated news that helped news reporters keep track of what was going on .

“We immediately moved someone supervising social media and our iReports to the Haiti desk,” said Nick Wrenn, Vice President of CNN International Digital Services.

Innovation

Mashable’s Social Good is dedicated to non-profit organizations successfully using these sites. One site who received 2010 Mashable’s Social Good award, Free the children is featured as having a great Facebook campaign.

Feed the Children successfully created a viral campaign to raise a million dollars through Facebook ‘likes’. With every person who likes their organization they donated a dollar. Feed the Children raised money for a cause but as well gained new followers and help educate those about third world hunger problems.

Free the Childrens Facebook Campaign

This blog will take past experiences where social media has impacted natural disasters and non profit organization in a positive way and why.

Success stories like “To Write Love on Her Arms, and “Free the Children” have showed us the impact that social media has for non profit organization and the impact they have on the world.

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