Internal Vs. External Tools: Determining the Best Approach to Social-Media Marketing
Using external social-media tools to their advantage
Although first hesitant to use external social-media tools, nonprofits and associations have been adapting to this newer communications channel. Organizations can use Web sites, like Twitter, to raise awareness by providing not only dedicated followers and staff — but also a global audience — with real-time organization updates.
Nonprofits and associations should use Facebook and LinkedIn, for example, as a place for potential donor and member research, and bear in mind that these sites are not a magic bullet for fundraising, in particular. Don’t just set up a group and get a few friends to join — the sites won’t achieve much on their own. Instead, use these social-media outlets to build relationships and connect those with similar interests.
The majority of external social-media tools allow nonprofits and associations to display their branding, and direct potential donors and members back to their home pages. Make sure that all of the sites are kept updated, and that they highlight the appeals, initiatives and needs of the organization.
When it comes to both internal and external social-media tools, don’t forget to bear the 90-9-1 rule in mind — that is, for every 100 registrants to a social-networking site, 90 will read through the content, nine will add occasionally to the discussions, and one will participate often to the initiative. Nonprofits and associations should encourage staff to make regular contributions, without overpowering the thoughts of donors and members. This way, organizations can maintain enough registrants to keep both internal and external social-media sites looking active and to refresh their content on a consistent basis, in order to tempt visitors back.
Leveraging the perfect combination of social media
According to Joe Tyler, president and CEO of e-marketing firm Informz, e-mail and social media (both internal and external) are like peanut butter and jelly — they make the perfect combination.