Social Media for Non-Profits

by Morgan Siem on July 6, 2011

in Social Media

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Question number 8 in our series of Top Social Media Marketing Questions for 2011 asks, “How do I use social media in niche markets?”

Specifically, marketers wanted to know:

How can non-profits cost-effectively use social media to increase their exposure and raise funds for their mission?

Non-profits have one particularly powerful leg up from other industries: passionate volunteers! Leverage your volunteer forces so that all the work doesn’t fall on one person’s plate. Ask volunteers to write blog posts, upload pictures to Facebook, respond to questions on Twitter, create event listings, check in on Foursquare, etc. Many hands make light work.

Here are some great resources for non-profits using social media:

  • The YouTube Nonprofit Program, which offers increased branding capabilities, the option to drive funding through a Google Checkout “Donate” button, a listing on YouTube’s nonprofit channel & the ability to add a call-to-action overlay on your videos.
  • Google Grants, which provides free AdWords advertising
  • MediaCause, a platform that crowdsources online marketing for non-profits (SEM, SEO & social media)
  •, a microvolunteering network that helps nonprofits crowdsource all kinds of needs including copywriting, graphic design and research.
  • Causes, which empowers individuals to create grassroots communities that take action on behalf of a specific issue or nonprofit organization.
  • ChipIn, a widget that you can place on your site to collect donations.

Once you’re established, here’s how to leverage your social media efforts to raise even more money! Brands are jumping on the corporate-giving bandwagon. They are on the hunt for nonprofits that have two things: 1) inspiring causes and 2) large audiences. If you can demonstrate that you have an expansive and active fan base, you’ll give companies greater incentive to become corporate sponsors of your cause.

Photo by photobrixie

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