How To Use Social Media To Promote Your Nonprofit Cause

Margaret Ross, Editor
Graphics and messages should be memorable

How To Use Social Media To Promote Your Cause.  Paint a picture of your passion for the cause. Ask people to join you in becoming part of an important and valuable solution .

Social media sites offer nonprofit organizations a huge new audience to tap, not only for funding, but for promoting awareness of your cause.

Create Social Media Accounts

The first step in using social media to promote your nonprofit, of course, is to create accounts at the major social media sites -  among the more popular ones are Twitter, Myspace, Facebook, Linkedin, and if you use video, Youtube. You should create the accounts under the name of the organization, not the name of a person.

Make A Graphics Impression- Be Memorable

On sites where you can design your own background, you should use your organization's colors and logo, for a consistent and instantly recognizable look.

Finding People. Community Building

To find people on Twitter who would be interested in your cause, use sites like,, and Twitter's search functions. On other sites, such as Facebook, search for people by interest group. If you have a group that caters to people in your geographic area, like a battered women's shelter or animal shelter or home for families of cancer patients, you can find people in your geographical area on sites like Twellowhood.

Develop Daily Social Media Habit - Once you start following people, a percentage of them will follow you back. Follow at least a few dozen people a day to start building up your following.

Ask For Assistance. Give Assistance

Also, ask people to tweet about your organization or post updates about your organizations, and about any events that you are having. Don't be afraid to directly approach people and ask for help.

For instance, if you live in Cleveland and are holding a fundraising event, find popular Twitterers or Facebook members, and send them a message - "We're holding a fundraising event at (such and such time and place) for our no-kill animal shelter; we'd appreciate it so much if you could let your followers know about it!"

Stay Fresh To Remain Top of Mind

Update your social media sites several times a day. Every time you are holding an event or fundraiser, let your followers know about it. You can also spread the word about your cause by tweeting/updating people with relevant facts about it, such as, "Did you know that 1.6 million cases of diabetes were diagnosed in 2007?" Or "Our city's homeless population has tripled since (insert date here)."

Do you need volunteers for your organization? Or for an upcoming event? Social media is a great way to get the word out, for free.

If your organization's cause has a designated month or day - breast cancer awareness month, diabetes awareness month, etc. - you can hold local fundraisers during that month and publicize the fundraisers before, during, and after that month.

For charitable organizations, which need to keep expenses down while getting the word out about their cause, there is no better vehicle than social media.

Share your vision pass the flame with social media.

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Margaret Ross, speaker and writer, grows and encourages people in business and in their lives. Ross is CEO of the Kamaron Institute, a leading management consulting, training, and market research communications firm. Margaret is the editor of Kamaron PI, the Positive Impact blog, host of Telly award winning Success Class and is a regularly featured guest on America’s top radio shows.

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