Nonprofits: 10 Social Media Benchmarks



We are currently in a social media transition period. Referral traffic, reach, and engagement are on the decline for those that do not have large followings and a social media advertising budget. 

All nonprofit social media campaigns – even those of large, well-funded organizations – can be improved upon.

Here are 10 social media benchmarks your nonprofit should strive for: 


1. Blogging at least twice monthly.

We’ve all heard it. Storytelling is the buzzword of 2016 – and for good reason. You need to write stories about the positive impact your nonprofit is making so you have a good story to share with your followers on social media, in email, and in your newsletter. However, just as important as the story itself, it how it is presented online. It should be published in a large font, have plenty of visual content, and a clear call-to-action. 


[Read: The 5 Steps to Purposeful Blogging]


2. E-newsletter has prominently featured calls-to-follow.

Ignoring the sad reality that many small nonprofits still send e-newsletters as attached PDFs (YIKES), your e-newsletter template in MailChimp or Constant Contact should be simple, modern in design, and include prominent calls-to-follow on social media. If not, then the basics of multichannel marketing likely have not been integrated into your online communications and fundraising plan.


[Read: 8 Tips to Make Your Nonprofit's Emails More Clickable]


3. Calls-to-follow are integrated into your online giving process.

Online best practices evolve so quickly now that it’s likely that every six months you’ll have new insights that can be integrated into your online giving process. One obvious sign that your nonprofit is on the right track is that you have added calls-to-follow to your “Thank You” landing page and follow-up “Thank You” email.


4. At least two social networks and experimenting with a third.

Due to popularity and demographics, all nonprofits should have a Facebook Page & Twitter Profile and be posting on Facebook at least of twice weekly and Twitter daily. Your third social network should be one that is up-and-coming, expands your mobile skill set, and reaches a new target audience, such as Gen Z on Snapchat or Millennials on Instagram.


[Read: Where to Find Your Nonprofit's Social Media Audience]


5. Do not automate Facebook posts to Twitter.

As tempted as you may be to save time, automation of Facebook posts to Twitter is not a best practice. Twitter users frown upon, and completely ignore, automated posts.


6. Creates promotional graphics for events and fundraising campaigns.

Even large nonprofits do this poorly, so don’t feel bad if this isn’t a regular practice at your nonprofit. That said, get better at it, and fast! Tools like Canva and Pablo make it super easy.


7. Visually compelling avatar that is used consistently on all social networks.

This is Social Media 101, but a best practice still not widely adopted by most nonprofits. Your followers on social media will initially experience your online brand through your avatar, so make sure it is visually compelling, simple, in most cases without text, and that you use it consistently on all social networks.


8. LinkedIn Company Page and you post a minimum of twice monthly.

Odds are your nonprofit has a LinkedIn Page and it is featured on the LinkedIn Profiles of every person who has added your nonprofit as work or volunteer experience. Search, claim, set up, and then post a minimum of twice monthly to keep it current. LinkedIn Company Pages are overlooked by most nonprofits, but engagement is often higher than Facebook Pages.


9. Ready for digital payments inside social networks.

Digital payments are coming to social networks (YouTube and Google launched them first). Get ready! A sure sign that your small nonprofit excels at social media is that you have already signed up for:

1. Google for Nonprofits

2. Twitter $Cashtags

3. Facebook Donations


10. Social media fundraising plan in writing.

The act of writing a comprehensive social media fundraising strategy is an essential first step in being successful on social media. To help you begin, here is  a three-step process for writing a strategic plan that can easily be revised on annual basis while at the same time is workable and moves your nonprofit forward.


Get The Social Media Benchmarks Report


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