One of our clients recently asked for some tips on how they could make their Facebook posts about donations more effective. Here are some quick recommendations I offered up that you can use as well:
6 Recommendations for Better Facebook Giving Campaigns
1. Set up your Facebook account to accept donations directly.
You could share a link to your online giving page, but Facebook has a built-in tool for accepting donations. They process the payments, and funds get routed to your account. The tool allows you to set a fundraising goal, and shows how close you are to reaching the goal, which can inspire more gifts. It also provides social proof — your followers see that their friends have already donated, making them more likely to donate, too. And Facebook pre-populates the giver’s info, making the process as easy as possible.
It takes a little bit of effort to set this up, and then you have to wait for Facebook to approve your account, so you’ll want to make sure to start the process well before any planned giving campaigns. We wrote a post about how to get your Facebook page to accept donations.
Once it’s set up, you can now add a donate button to your posts, and make it possible for people to give without leaving Facebook.
2. Be realistic and ask for specific, small donation amounts.
Let’s be honest — your biggest donors are probably not doing most of their giving via Facebook. Big donors should not be the target of your Facebook campaign. Instead, shoot for getting lots of people to donate a small amount. While this may not make a huge impact to your bottom line initially, you’re forming a giving relationship with people who will get more and more invested with your organization over time.
First-time donors often feel like their small contribution isn’t worth it, and decide not to give at all rather than give something small. You can help them feel more comfortable by telling them that every little bit helps, and suggesting a low dollar amount, like $5, $10, or $20. People may still give larger amounts, which will be a great bonus!
3. Consider alternate giving days.
Days that are dedicated to giving, like Giving Tuesday and The Big Payback here in Nashville, are wonderful for the nonprofit community as a whole. But as a single organization, you can quickly get lost in the noise. With every nonprofit seeking attention on these key dates, you have lots of competition.
Consider picking another date or occasion that has fewer organizations clamoring for attention. You get bonus points if it’s a day that’s connected to your mission. For instance, we worked with 4:13 Strong, a residential program that gives at-risk men a second chance, to create an online giving campaign around Father’s Day. We shared stories of how the men in the program are working to be better fathers to make the connection with the holiday.
4. Use video.
There’s no way around…video posts perform better on Facebook. When you create your posts that are asking for donations, include a short video.
5. Ask for donations for a specific need.
It’s hard for people to get excited about giving to vague causes. They need a person or a story they can connect to, and they want to know how their donation is going to contribute. So before you start your campaign, pick something very specific that you’re raising money for.
6. Don’t ask too often.
People come to Facebook to see what their friends are up to and occupy themselves. They (usually) aren’t looking for giving campaigns. If it feels like you’re constantly asking for money, eventually your audience will start ignoring your posts. While there’s no hard-and-fast rule for how often you should make an ask, make sure it’s only a small fraction of the total content you’re sharing, and be intentional about planning and timing your online giving campaigns.