Using Social Media To Grow Your Donor Base

by: Lauren Randel, Director of Marketing & Communications

The most important part of Social Media, is cultivating relationships online. Just like in our daily lives, relationship is key. If you have a conversation with someone you know, where they mention they are searching for some new furniture, and you own a furniture store, you’ll tell them. More than likely, they will buy their furniture from you. In essence, social media can work the same way.

It’s important when having discussions with potential clients to talk about things they would be interested in. If you’re going to write on a topic, find a target audience for that topic. You wont want to write about needlepoint when trying to market a skateboarding event to teens. Target an audience and write with them in mind. If you want to target potential donors, write about things that would interest them.

Talking to people online isn’t all that different from meeting a new friend at the coffee shop. They want to know who you are, and they want to know that you’re being authentic. The reason that freelancing is so popular in today’s market is because people are tired of dealing with faceless corporations. They want to help out small businesses and buy from people they meet and talk to, people they trust. Be transparent.

Keeping current with your social media accounts is very important. If you do build a following, they will want to get fresh content and information when they check out your blog or your twitter. Leaving stale information for them to find is a mistake. Try to tweet an interesting tidbit at least once a day, post a favorite quote or a snippet of news on your Facebook for people to comment on, or record a quick video blog once a week, so people feel like they are keeping up with you. Just staying consistent will make people check back with you pretty frequently and grow a community of followers for you.

It doesn’t matter if your business is large or small, if it has been established for a long time or if it’s a start-up, social media will increase visibility for you. Online marketing is a very effective and inexpensive way to get the word out about your products and services. A great resource for using social media to grow your business is a book by Amber Mac, Titled Power Friending, Demystifying Social Media To Grow Your Business. It’s a great read, and will give you so many ideas for promoting your business online. Whatever your strategy, remember that missing out on such a simple and cost-effective method for marketing will cost you plenty, especially in today’s economy.