Nonprofits have been hit hard by the recession. Now many nonprofits also face the typical “donor fatigue” fundraising challenges that follow any major natural disaster such as the recent earthquakes in Haiti. All of the traditional funding streams have been hurt, and nonprofits, by and large, keep plugging along – doing more with less, to hang on till better times when they can again focus on their mission with vigor. It’s hard when you are short-staffed and under funded to consider jumping into anything new, but for nonprofits your very survival depends upon committing to building and maintaining a strong social media presence. Here’s why:
1. ALL of your donors are online. The stereotype that social media is for kids is simply false. Study after study proves it. The largest growing demographic on Facebook is women over 55. More interesting, there has recently been a big jump in social media users age 63-75! Individual micro-donations can be difficult to solicit because it takes so many more of them to make a dent in your organization’s budget, but remember, this strategy won Obama the White House. Social media can also support fundraising event participant growth (from galas to individual pledge events like walks) through the sharing of invitations or requests to friends.
Even traditional foundations’ program officers can be reached and moved by your relationship, something that can get a lot stronger when you are Facebook friends or even connected on LinkedIn. You already know that your Millennial supporters are on Facebook and Twitter, but so is everyone else and their grandmother.