Get the most out of social media at your fundraising event | Miratel Solutions

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How to share your nonprofit fundraising event via social media

What could be more exciting for a nonprofit and your audience than the opportunity to use social media to share a live account of a  nonprofit fundraising event to your donors and supporters wherever they are located? If you’ve already built an appreciable donor audience that are engaging with your charity via social media channels then one of the biggest challenges and potential highlights on your calendar would be sharing your event live with your audience.

So much of the work to successfully bring such an event to your audience by way of social media is within the planning, but don’t be overwhelmed, with strong attention to detail sharing your next fundraising event online no matter what scale can become a huge benefit for your organization.

Building awareness and alerting your audience in advance of the event is key and you’ve got multiple resources at hand to make that happen. Within your own site, Facebook page, Twitter account, Google+, blog, LinkedIn, Instagram account or other social media profiles you can include banner ads or other promotional materials that are visible to your audience weeks or even a month or two prior to the big day. It provides the platform of a strong and constant reminder for your audience.

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Selecting a brief and memorable title for the event helps and you should ideally tie that to a hashtag that is exclusive to the event. Hold a planning session to create the event name and hashtag prior to commencing your online promotional steps so that the hashtag can be added to all of the graphics you create. For example if your event was a fundraising bike ride for a to aid an educational nonprofit develop a reading program your hashtag could be something like #bike4books14 – keep it short and catchy and make sure it’s not in current Twitter use.

Prior to the event build out a strategy for the frequency of regular updates to build interest in advance, remember that a single tweet, blog post or Facebook update only has lasting impact of either a few hours or perhaps a day depending on how regularly you post. If you have a few months lead time then you can stagger the reminders within your normal stream of content while steadily building up awareness effectively. If you send out a regular newsletter be sure to also include the hashtag there when announcing the details of your forthcoming event.

Create a poster or banners that are unique to your event with a special message so that participants can be photographed holding it during the day of the fundraising event.

Don’t leave all of the content writing and fundraising news that you’ll want to share ‘live’ until the day of the event, you won’t have time. Instead predetermine the framework of what you want to say by assessing your goals and key messages. Determine your photo and video opportunities, consider who to interview and which key moments are expected at the event. Creating a timetable for tasks, posts, photographs and even locations for your social media manager to make sure that the time is most effectively used. He or she will be compiling a lot of information so having the post content written as a draft before the event will save a lot of time when trying to share events as they happen. Before the event create a checklist of tools you need to bring to capture the day and fine-tune your schedule and task-list for what you plan to accomplish. Allow a little more time than expected between ‘tasks’ as there is every chance that things will take longer to complete than you expected.

You don’t need to share every single photograph, quote or video on the day itself but can take away much of that content for an event review over the following days perhaps via a blog post or an event summary that you could create on Facebook.

Let’s not forget the ‘social’ element of social media. If supporters of your nonprofit are asking questions or commenting on your Facebook page or Twitter during the event itself, allow time to respond to those comments to build even more real-time engagement. Quotes from participants and photographs or videos of them bring a great human element to your fundraising event and planning a brief interview with key individuals within your organization is another opportunity that should not be missed. What better time for your nonprofit to share just how much of a difference the organization is able to make with the support that they receive?

Ask participants about their day and compile short quotes about the importance of taking part and making a difference. Share photographs and video that highlight the attendance at the event and share the smiles and special moments. In addition to the social media channels I’ve mentioned Pinterest and Instagram are the perfect place for a steady stream of images from your event. Make sure you include your event hashtag with all updates to help them be found and shared, also don’t forget to link back to your main page or event fundraising page. Above all else have fun and share that fun with your audience.

If you have any questions or can add other tips based on your personal experience with social media at fundraising events please add them in the comments below.

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Miratel Solutions is a Toronto call centreeBusiness, and letter shop mail house specializing in professional fundraising services including PCI compliant inbound telephone fundraisingoutbound telephone fundraisingonline fundraisinglottery fundraising servicesdonation processing and receipting and direct mail fundraising services. We are committed to our CSR business values in all our business decisions  and advancing the missions of the nonprofits we proudly serve.

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