MoveYourMountain

Developing a Social Media Strategy for Your Online Fundraiser

social media strategy

Creating the Ultimate campaign page is just the beginning of a crowdfunding campaign. To keep momentum going, you need a PLAN…a strategy.  If you thought that you could just share a link to your online fundraising campaign a few times on Facebook or Twitter, you need to think again. We’re going to work together, you and I, to develop a social media strategy for your online fundraiser.  We are going to talk about each social media platform and the optimal times and days to post on each.  Come on…grab a pencil, we’ve got work to do!

BEFORE you start posting on ANY social  media platform, are you already on any? You can’t just make up an account today, with no connections, and expect anyone to see what you’re posting. If you aren’t living in a “social media” world yet, it’s time to get on board!  Social media isn’t just a passing fad, it’s THE way that people around the world share news, local interests, personal events, and general information. You don’t have to be active on EVERY single network, but we are going to discuss each one and how each platform can help spread awareness about your crowdfunding campaign.

If you’re already on social media, we’re going to develop a strategy for utilizing those platforms to connect with people who can help you reach your fundraising goal. If you are NOT on any platforms yet, don’t sign up for any platforms yet. Continue reading about each platform and HOW it can help you connect with people, THEN, choose those platforms that best fit  YOU and your strategy for connecting with people.

Crowdfunding, in essence, is using YOUR crowd of people to raise money for a cause, driven by social media to connect with your network of friends and family.

Facebook

facebook

The Mac Daddy of all social media networks. It’s your go-to network to share information. The best time to share a post on Facebook is in the morning, 6-8am, and in the afternoons, between 1-4pm. The best days to post is during the weekday, Wednesday being the BEST. Now, this data shows us that people check in the MOST before work and during work, and REALLY need to escape on Wednesday afternoons!  If you’re going to post on the weekends, do it early in the morning or later in the evening. Therefore, make sure that you’re utilizing these days and times to share your campaign with your friends and family.

It’s also important to USE a picture when sharing. Photos generate MORE engagement (likes and/or comments).

Share your campaign at least ONCE a week. Write the post a little different each time to add a little variety. For example, :

  • We’ve started a fundraiser for Isaac’s class. Head on over to [campaign link] support this amazing little guy!
  • Thanks to everyone that’s donated to Isaac’s class, I can’t wait to show you what we’re buying for the class! If you haven’t donated yet, there’s still time. [campaign link]
  • I know…you’ve been busy this week.  Have you seen the campaign we started for Isaac’s class? [campaign link]

Those are just examples of a few different ways you’re basically saying the same thing, “I’ve started an online fundraising campaign and I need donations”!  Don’t just ask for donations, always offer MORE information, a picture, updates, thank yous, anything that will cause people to stop scrolling and read.

Facebook is always changing is algorithm and what shows up in people’s feeds. Don’t worry about looking “spammy” or “needy”. First, your update may NOT even show up in their timeline every-time you post and second…do you need money or not? My guess is yes, if you started an online fundraiser. So, don’t be bashful. Share your campaign with your crowd and let them choose to support you.

Twitter

twitter

If Facebook is the Mac Daddy, Twitter would be Mac Mama! The amazing thing about Twitter is that you can talk to ANYbody out there! They don’t have to be your friend at all. Now, that also means that your tweets could get lost in Twitterland…but, if you’re strategic when you post, you’ll have a better experience.

The BEST time to post on Twitter is during the week and during the day. It’s SO easy to send a quick update in 140 characters or less, that most people find themselves checking their Twitter feed throughout the work day.

Use pictures here as well. You’ll get MORE engagement with a photo attached to your tweet.

You don’t have all the space you have on Facebook to share a story. Make people WANT to see what your campaign is about. Here are some examples:

  • You won’t believe what we found in Isaac’s class today! [campaign link]
  • Who needs #AlexFromTarget when you can have #IsaacFrom2ndGrade [campaign link]
  • @YoGabbaGabba Check out these cool kicks Isaac’s sporting at his fundraiser! [campaign link]

Ask a question, provoke ANY emotion. Tag along with a trending hashtag (like the #AlexFromTarget hashtage). Tag people you know or WANT to know or who may have an interest in your fundraiser or tweet. Understand the Hashtag and use it well.

Tweet often…at least 3 times per day. Use a Twitter Scheduling Tool like Bufferapp.com or Hootsuite. These tools allow you to schedule, in advance, what you want to tweet out and and when. That takes the stress out of making sure your tweets get out at an optimal day and time.

Linkedin

linkedinThis is NOT just for networking for future jobs. Linkedin has become a hub of professionals and people seeking to network in a more structured environment than Facebook.

This is NOT the place to share what you’re having for lunch, when you’re going to the bathroom, and what flavor gum you’re chewing today. It is, however, the platform that you would use to share your fundraising campaign on a more professional plane.

Don’t update Linkedin as often as you would the other social media sites. Let’s update here at least once a week. But, not just in your profile. Join “groups” on Lindedin related to your interests or that may be relevant to your campaign. For instance, I could join an “autism” group and then share with that group how I use online fundraising to raise money for my son’t autism class.

The days to post on Linkedin and times of day are also important. Linkedin is most active during the work week, more so Monday-Thursday. The best time of day to post would be at lunchtime or early evening (4-6pm).

Pinterest

pinterest

Pinterest isn’t just for recipes and crafts. It is a photo playground, where only the awesome photographers play. Here, you get people’s attention with an amazing picture. Use Pinterest if you have great pictures to share and pictures that will evoke an emotion (whether a smile, sadness, or excitement).

The absolute BEST day to post on Pinterest is Saturday mornings. Friday nights are pretty popular too. Stay away from posting during the workweek, if you want more engagement.

Use a great picture, and describe it well. Use words that people would organically search for. And…don’t forget to add a link to your campaign and use hashtags if there are any relevant to your fundraiser.

You can post on Pinterest as often as you want…you just need to be sure that you’re using a different picture each time. Be sure to create a “board” that also has relevant information pertaining to your fundraiser. For instance, I could create a Pinterest Board labeled “Autism” and include other pins about autism, but that’s also where people would find the pictures leading to my campaign.

Google +

g+Google Plus is really close to Facebook in relation to what type of posts you should update with. Anything really goes. It isn’t too stuffy and it’s a more casual social community. Be sure to add people that you know to your “circles” and become part of different groups.

Talk within your groups…don’t just keep posting about your campaign. This is a great place to really network and be involved in the conversation.

Comment on other people’s post to get comments back.

The BEST time to post on G+ is during the week and in the morning, between 9-10am. Do not start out too early in the day or post late at night…your updates will get lost!

This is another platform where pictures will speak volumes. Use them when you can and link to your fundraising campaign.

Whew…we’ve got the basics covered. There are actually even MORE social media platforms…but, these are the TOP FIVE that most people are familiar with.

I hope you can use this information to make a calendar of when and where to share your fundraising campaign.  Use the information as the basis to develop a social media strategy that will help you share your campaign with the most people.

Be sure to not only ask for donations, but to ask people to share your campaign.

Now…if you were one of those Social Media Wallflowers and you haven’t delved in yet, how do you feel now about starting? Social Media really isn’t scary, once you know how to behave on the playground!

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