Maintaining a stunning social media presence as a nonprofit can feel near impossible. We get it. You have a million different jobs to do and worrying about a great social media presence seems… well… stupid.

BUT you can’t ignore it any longer if you want your impact to grow. Today we want to show you that it can be done. No matter what corner of the nonprofit world you occupy, no matter how large or small you are, winning on social media can be a real possibility for you.

Let’s see how the cool people do it.

For small or local organizations: Clothed in Hope

Clothed in Hope seeks to empower women through education and training in entrepreneurship and sewing. Although Clothed in Hope is a nonprofit, its online presence very much mimics that of a modern-day business—it’s message is relevant, savvy, and customized for its audience.

Nonprofits are often criticized for being “behind the times” in their communication and marketing efforts. That’s why we love Clothed in Hope so much; it is a brilliant example of modern marketing meeting a compelling cause to bring about great influence.

Additionally, the photos shared on the social accounts are stylish, eye-catching, and gorgeous. Nonprofits, hear us when we say that it isn’t a crime to invest in stunning photography to help your cause. If you’re always behind on relevant marketing, then yes, social media will take much longer and much more effort to maintain. But if you can get ahead of the curve and be relevant in everything you’re putting out, then you can mark the hardest part off the list.

For growing nonprofits: Make a Wish and Charity:Water

Make a Wish and Charity:Water both seek to provide for needy and hurting people. What that looks like in action is very different for each one though. However, in studying both of these organizations, it’s easy to see that their social media presences work largely because they tell unforgettable stories of the people they help.

Nonprofits typically either focus on the problem they’re trying to solve (often seen as negative motivation or they focus on the result (more positive motivation). Both of these use positivity to show the joy that comes from creating goodness in the other people’s lives. If your social media mood slants on the negative side, switch it up! Go positive and show people what happens when they get involved—show your followers the proof of their investment. This is perhaps the most important aspect for any nonprofit of any size and any industry focus: “Don’t just say what you do, tell the stories of those impacted by your mission.” – Tweet This

For large or global nonprofits: Unicef

Not every nonprofit is on the level of Unicef and many will never be. But that’s okay! Just because you can’t match the giants in numbers doesn’t mean you can’t still match their strategies and excel in your own specialized sector.

The biggest thing you can learn from organizations like Unicef is the importance of running campaigns on social. You can’t just post update after update, story after story without having some kind of strategy behind it. Try to run a campaign at least once a year. Build it around a special donation call-to-action, set up unique landing pages for the campaign, and develop a new hashtag or tagline to run all social posts around. Optimize it for each platform and thread the theme throughout your email marketing and blog/news site sections. Not only will you see increased engagement on social, you can also raise significant money through these efforts and build credibility around your name. Cha-ching! We all love the sound of that.

Listen, nonprofits…

Winning on social media might feel like a right reserved for celebrities or cool hipsters with their latte art and forest photos, but there’s enough cake at the party for us all to have a piece and eat it too.  Just remember, not everyone likes vanilla cake. Figure out what your audience wants through continual testing and analytical review, and then blow them away with your implementation.

social media cheat sheet

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