As we head into the last quarter of the year, anxiety may be building. You’ve got year-end goals to reach, fundraising quotas to hit, and program reports to crank out. When it comes to your digital communications goals, remember that social media is your friend! While it is sometimes seen as an afterthought, according to Marketo, “social media is one of the most effective (and perhaps cost-effective) channels to connect with your audiences.”
For this last push of the year, here are some realistic and top-level ways that you can successfully optimize your strategy to increase audience engagement with your content.
Live By Your Social Calendar
Just as your editorial calendar keeps you in check and on time for new blog posts, your social calendar ensures that you don’t forget to keep things moving, updated, and fitting well based on the channel type and target audience. As you schedule new content, do a social network sweep to make sure you’re creating the best text, tone, images and videos. And don’t be afraid to think long term; see how far in the future you can plug valuable content so that you’re not having to remind yourself to do it again in the future.
Develop Compelling Visuals
Both videos and images get far more engagement on all social media channels. And this doesn’t just apply to your daily posts. Be sure that your cover and profile photos are of high, attractive quality to impress your target audiences. While having an in-house graphic designer is great, it’s not a must-have in order to produce eye-catching content. Set yourself up with a nonprofit Canva account — premium access is free for registered nonprofits!
Adjust Your Copy
How you say something can make a huge difference in terms of how your audience responds. General summaries don’t necessarily encourage a reaction; however, posing a question they can relate to or sharing a valuable statistic are great (and easy!) ways to get followers to like, share or comment. Also consider how your voice and tone is perceived, which you will likely want to vary from one social network to another, e.g., a familiar tone on Facebook versus a more formal one on LinkedIn.
Let the Data Inspire You (Really!)
Your social media metrics help you to better understand what is and isn’t working; but beyond that, they are also an excellent source of inspiration to spark new ideas and approaches. For example, your data shows that no one is engaging with your jobs posts on Facebook. Hmph… what to do? Rather than continuing to post the description and link for individual openings, maybe you throw out an ask like, “describe your ideal nonprofit job.” Get people engaged in a playful, interesting conversations (if appropriate for your audience), and see if that helps to drive more candidates to your careers page.
There are of course many others ways to tweak your social strategy, but these big bucket ones are a great starting point, especially if the fall season is in full swing and you don’t have a lot of time to spend on tweaking things. If you are looking for more insight though, here are a number of other resources to help you along the way: