Social media for charities: what to use and how to use it

Using social media for charities is a great way to engage donors, reach a new audience and is a free source of advertising. Social media gives charities the opportunity to build a relationship with followers and help turn them into regular donors.

Platforms such as LinkedIn will help connect charities to corporate donors. At Good2Give, we are seeing the trend of corporates giving grants to communities that are important to their employees. This increase in an employee’s ability to influence upwards makes it more important than ever before to build a relationship with them.

social media for charities depicted as humans

Social media for charities: LinkedIn

LinkedIn is primarily used by corporate professionals for networking, connecting and job searching. The user’s activity is recorded on their profile including everything they have liked, commented on and shared in the past. It is important that you keep your LinkedIn posts professional and positive, so it reflects well on the followers engaging with it.

What to post?

  • Impact stories – the benefits of giving spikes when people feel a real connection to those they are helping. Try introducing your followers to the vulnerable population their donation is helping.
  • Congratulatory and thank you messages – take your time to appreciate volunteers, donors and corporates. These posts attract a lot of engagement as it is easy for followers to comment on a congratulatory message.
  • Update your followers – Transparency is key to building a relationship with donors, let them know the details of your latest project and where exactly their funds are going. You can also do this by posting ‘Regular Updates’ on the Good2Give Workplace Giving Platform.
  • Provide followers with something educational in your cause area, like the below example from R U OK?

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Social media for charities: Facebook

Facebook is a great way to engage all your donors, not just your corporate donors. At Good2Give, we tend to see charities having large followings on Facebook. Facebook is an informal platform where members can comment questions, reply to other members, and share their own stories.

Facebook has more of a community feel and is a great platform to nurture relationships. Donors that are commenting underneath posts are highly engaged and can become advocates for your charity. By replying to your donors and liking their comments, you can build a stronger relationship with them.

What to post?

  • Impact stories –by sharing peoples’ experiences with your charity, it will encourage others to share their own. Think of this as electronic word of mouth, every time a follower makes a post about your organisation, they are spreading the word about your organisation to their friends and family.
  • Congratulatory and thank you messages – take your time to appreciate volunteers, donors and corporate grants. A lot of the time, your followers might want to say thank you as well. These posts attract a lot of engagement as it is easy for followers to comment a thank you message.
  • Update your donors on your work – Transparency is key to retaining your donors, let them know the details of your latest project and where their funds are going.

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“The tumor had a very complicated name. At first they told us three to five years, and that it wouldn’t be painful. We…

Posted by Humans of New York on Sunday, 4 October 2020

Social media for charities: Twitter

Twitter can be a very political platform and is often used to share new research and quick updates. While you can post similar messages on LinkedIn and Facebook, Twitter needs a different type of messaging especially seeing that you are only allowed to write posts that contain a maximum of 240 characters. On Twitter, you don’t have to be as professional, many organisations will post jokes to gain attention, however you still need to reflect your organisation’s brand tone and feel. Make sure to use hashtags to make your posts discoverable.

What to post?

  • Your research – blog posts, journal articles, news items and thought leadership pieces.
  • Making quick updates – this is particularly useful in times of disasters, such as sharing bushfire updates or COVID-19 cases.
  • Engaging other users – you are not limited to engaging with other donors, you can reply to other charities and corporates on Twitter. This will help you build bonds with those you are engaging with.

True story…

Posted by Australian Federal Police on Monday, 23 November 2020

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Social media for charities: Instagram

Instagram is a very graphical platform. Users want to see a curated feed of consistent lighting, colour palette, mood and subject matter. While there can be some slight variation, your feed should be cohesive, and deviation should be rare and strategic.

What to post?

  • Professional photos
  • Similar content each time


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A post shared by Oxfam Australia (@oxfamaustralia)

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I make my posts stand out?

Original content trumps all. Try to use your own photography or graphic design skills. Canva makes it easy to create your own content! You can apply for a free non-profit version, sign up for a free basic version or purchase a pro version.

How often should I make posts on social media?

The optimal amount of posts on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram are three posts per week, at a minimum, you should aim to post at least once per week. Try not to post more than three times per day as posting too frequently is the main reason users unfollow a page.

What do I do if I don’t have any social media skills in my organisation?

The donors on Good2Give mostly come from corporate backgrounds. Our partnership with Communiteer allows you to outsource your social media needs to professionals by posting volunteering opportunities on our platform.