Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Facebook - Stay or Go?

More and more folks appear to be waking up to the change in their reach on Facebook - seeing a lot more posts wondering whether they should stay or go. And since FB hasn't said anything about whether they'd cut the nonprofits any slack, that's a question that's going to remain a while. So what to do?
I think this is a good time to experiment. Patricia Redsicker cites recent research indicating that social media platforms that play to peoples' visual senses do better than other platforms. Facebook is number one on that list, but that may be partially due to it's being around the longest. And one study at Princeton has them losing 80% of their base within the next three years. Also in the running are Tumblr and Pinterest.


So why spend some time on Tumbler or Pinterest, depending on where you think your audience is. Tumblr is where a lot of the younger people are these days; good if you've been wanting to engage with a larger number of young volunteers or donors. Here's what turned up when I did a search for 'nonprofit' on Tumblr:

There are several nonprofits on Tumblr and if you do a search, you'll probably find several groups who can inspire your own Tumblr page. 

I found Tumblr pretty easy to use, but if you'd like some coaching, there are a number of tutorials, including this one on Digital Trend. For more tutorials, just Google how to use Tumblr.


Pinterest is another visual platform. Rather than blogging, you pin pictures to various boards - think of each board as a picture album. Each picture can be associated with a specific link and has a description. Here's a bit of what I got when I searched for 'nonprofit organizations':

You could set up different boards for different programs and the pictures could direct the viewer to a blog, an article, an invitation, a web page - anyplace where the picture is available to be pinned from. Write a good description and add a comment and you can start a conversation.

The audience, according to many social media consultants, is mostly women.

What About Facebook?

No need to give up on it just yet; keep up with posting and engaging. Just make that you don't go on autopilot. Making your content worth looking at is always a goal to write towards and the best way to help make sure it reaches your intended audience. Strive to be fresh and interesting rather than boastful or boring. Include images because they really do help.

Tip: It used to be that people would frown on you for liking your own post, but these days, that like might help get your post seen in the first place instead of seen by less than 6% of your followers and falling quickly off the page soon after.

Finally, make sure you track what kind of engagement you're getting and how much. You will need this information to help you decide whether or not you want to stay or go.

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