Social Media 101: Understanding the Options

Once you’ve decided to move forward with creating a social media presence for your nonprofit, there are a number of factors to think about. Which social media sites should you invest your time in? What type of content should you post?

Luckily, SOURCE is here to help make sense of all of the various options available to you, along with provide a few tips on how to maximize your presence on each channel. Here, we will focus on the three biggest social media channels: Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. If you are interested in other channels, SOURCE would be happy to help you with them.

Facebook: This is a general favorite, especially with nonprofits, because it reaches a very wide audience. In recent years, Facebook has designed itself to help groups maximize their reach and distribute their message. The first step to creating a Facebook presence will be to set up a Facebook Page in your name. Then, try to get as much of your audience engaged on Facebook as possible, meaning post content that’s interesting for your target audiences! In terms of reach, you can pay to ensure that your posts get additional reach, which may be worthwhile when you first begin.

Instagram: Primarily a photo sharing platform, Instagram draws in a much younger demographic. However, if your nonprofit has programs working directly with younger individuals, Instagram can be a great way to engage them. Additionally, if you host frequent events, Instagram can be a great way to engage your attendees in sharing their experiences. Since Instagram posts can link back to Facebook, it can be a great way to get more Facebook followers.

Twitter: Famous for its 140 character limit, Twitter can be a great way to share short pieces of information with your audience. Many research organizations use it to share their most recent research. Additionally, Twitter has grown immensely popular among celebrities in a way that neither Facebook nor Instagram are. So, if you happen to have a connection to a celebrity, either local or national, utilize their reach to maximize your audience.

Now that you know about the basic differences that distinguish each channel, you can start launching your very own! If you want some additional tips, look forward to our next Insight post- Social Media 101: Tips and Tricks!

If you have any questions or would like SOURCE’s help in developing your own social media channels, please contact us at source@cmc.edu.

by sara linssen