Just this year, Facebook had more than 2.9 billion active users in the month of January alone.
To channel the words of Ariel from Disney's The Little Mermaid, you want to be where the people are.
And when it comes to social media, the people are on Facebook.
Facebook has recently implemented several tools useful for nonprofits—the peer-to-peer fundraising option, in particular, as well as the ability to self-host fundraisers through their events and challenges functions.
It’s also a great place for your supporters to interact with you and share your work with their own networks—making the platform a great opportunity to bring even more folks into the work you do.
Here are four ways to make the most of your nonprofit’s Facebook profile.
Choose the Right Images
Your nonprofit’s Facebook profile will need both a profile photo and cover photo. Think closely about your organization's brand, and make choices that reflect your nonprofit and appeal to your target audience.
Your Facebook profile photo will typically be a version of your organization's logo that can fit comfortably into the required circle shape of Facebook's profile photos. If you have a graphic designer, they can help you adjust your logo to fit here.
Your cover photo should be a well-chosen banner-style image at a high enough resolution that it looks clear at 851 pixels wide by 315 pixels high. Maybe this is a photo of your staff or the community you serve.
You can even choose to promote an upcoming event or program by uploading a banner image edited to display pertinent information. Just remember to change it when the event or campaign has passed!
Develop a Strategy
When it comes to developing a killer Facebook strategy for your nonprofit, you'll want to consider how social media fits into your overall marketing plan. Anything you post online should be reflective of your larger goals when it comes to fundraising events, appeals, membership drives, or anything else happening across your organization.
Your Facebook profile should be updated frequently and reflect your organization's current priorities. For example, are you currently trying to build your email list? Post signup links on Facebook, or run promotions that encourage Facebook followers to join your newsletter to get access to a special opportunity.
Keep Your Nonprofit’s Facebook Page Updated
Whether or not someone chooses to engage with you may depend on how well you keep your profile updated. If a visitor sees old photos and no recent posts, they're more likely to navigate away than spend more time checking out your organization. Be sure to cycle photos regularly, as well as keep any details or contact information up-to-date—especially if your operations or programming are seasonal in nature!
So what are some examples of things you might post to your nonprofit's Facebook page?
- An article about research or current events in your issue area
- Photos from your programming or special events
- A client story or testimonial
- A motivational quote
- Words from your executive director or CEO
- A donor, volunteer, staff, or board member profile that talks about why this person supports your organization
Use Facebook’s Nonprofit Fundraising Tools
Accepting donations on Facebook is a major attraction for nonprofit organizations—and it's clear to see why. The platform makes fundraising easy, and it allows for peer-to-peer fundraising without investing in expensive software to manage similar campaigns.
Anyone can set up a fundraiser for your nonprofit in honor of an event, a loved one's memory, or even their own birthday celebration! You can add a donation button directly to your profile page and encourage friends and followers to campaign on your behalf.
In order to be eligible and verified by Facebook, US organizations must be a registered 501(c)3 through the IRS. Once approved, you'll enter your organization's bank information to receive direct deposits of any raised funds.