Creating a thriving non-profit is unique in many ways compared to building a business. For starters, you typically have donors and don’t necessarily sell products for a huge profit margin. These funds go back in to support the work you are doing. These works are often for the good of others through food banks, However, there are some ways that nonprofits and for-profit businesses are similar. And one of them is in the ways that you can create engagement with your organization online.
There are plenty of options, and only you can decide which ones will work best for your organization. Here’s how to improve engagement for your non-profit.
Create a Dynamic Website
Websites that are easy to use, readable, and have good content are ones that engage readers more. People are more apt to share stories and blog posts that they enjoyed reading. An engaging website also makes your organization appear more credible which can make it more likely that people will give.
While getting a custom-designed website can cost tens of thousands of dollars, there are plenty of professional options out there as low as $20 per month. A dynamic website just needs to focus on the key value you offer to your constituents, how donors and volunteers can get involved, and the best ways to contact you.
Offer an Option for Online Giving
If you’re not already doing it, here’s your sign to start offering online giving for your donors. Online giving for churches, homeless shelters, and food banks makes it easier for people to give. Online giving has increased exponentially in the past decade especially and shows no signs of slowing down. This makes it even more important for you to ensure your non-profit has an option for online giving. Make it as easy as possible for donors to give to you and you’ll have more success.
Keep Your Social Media Simple
There are nonprofits that spend a lot of money on social media. While there are plenty of ways to improve the look and feel of your social media, when it comes down to it, simple is best. Post on a regular schedule, focus on the topics that connect your organization to your followers and make sure it looks like your brand. Also, avoid using stock photos when possible.
With the caliber of smartphone cameras nowadays, it’s easier than ever before to get photos of your non-profit when you’re doing your daily tasks. Use a few specific brand colors as well.
Use an App
Organizations that use apps get more engagement from the people who use them. Apps make it easier to engage with your donors and followers. Use your app to send push notifications. Share when a new blog post goes up. Give followers a way to connect more easily. People spend an average of 3 hours or more daily on their phones. Less people visit websites and those who do, need to see a mobile-first site that is easy to read and navigate on a phone.
Stories are powerful. They connect to people in ways that pretty pictures and videos cannot. You can have the best-looking social media channels and web portals in the world, but without stories that share the good things you’re doing, they are just great designs. Sharing testimonies of the people your organization has helped, how much you’ve given to the particular needs your non-profit supports, and even sharing how what you’ve done impacts the staff, are all excellent engagement opportunities.
Whether you’re running a homeless shelter, a food pantry, or a church, hearing the stories of the people who are helped by your work improves engagement significantly. Stories are how you connect people to other people using various media to do it. Whether you incorporate Instagram Reels, share a story on your TikTok, or add a testimonials page to your website, it’s important to share stories.
Being engaging as a non-profit doesn’t necessarily mean you have to spend hours a day online. Craft stories that connect and send them in weekly email newsletters. Collect testimonies from people who use your non-profit for help, and make sure you send out stats at least annually to let everyone know how you used the funds in the previous year.