No matter how trustworthy or respected your organization’s brand is, nothing gets a donor’s attention more than a referral from a friend, family member or peer. That’s why having an active, engaging social-media presence is so vital.
Donors are having conversations about your organizations and others on Facebook, Twitter, blogs and everywhere else social. They’re recommending causes they think their friends should support or would like, and warning each other of ones that forgot to thank them or misused funds (at least in their minds). Your organization must have a presence there to join these conversations and do everything in its power to make it easy for donors to share your messages and stories in social channels.
A recent study by social-media marketing referral platform provider SocialTwist showed that users of its Tell-a-Friend widget saw significantly greater clickthrough rates when messages were shared via social networks.
“What we’re seeing is that social referrals, word-of-mouth, has always been a very important channel,” says Vijay Pullur, CEO of SocialTwist. “When a friend talks about something they’ve used and they like it, the tendency is to go and check that out, buy the same product or donate to the same cause.
“With social media coming in, what’s happening with the whole word-of-mouth is now it’s easy online. People love to share stuff on Facebook, Twitter. They want to talk about things that they like or things they think their friends would be interested in,” he adds. “Word-of-mouth has been a concept for a long time; it’s not new. What has changed in the last few years is that social media has made this whole conversation come online very easily.”
Pullur offers three things every organization must do to effectively integrate social media into its marketing mix.
1. Be exciting and inviting. “For any conversation to happen, you’ve got to find out what is interesting for people to talk about. That’s the fundamental thing about actually getting yourself engaged in social media and having users have a conversation about you,” Pullur says. “Make people think that this really is something unique and that it’s talk-worthy, if you will.”