Social Media is more than sharing stuff like messages, pictures, videos, etc online with friends. It’s about building relationships. The media uses various publishing strategies and helps in disseminating information through social interaction. A number of social media channels are now providing users with a variety of media monologues and other web-based services that help users feel connected to the medium. It is replacing the traditional media at a very fast pace. More than a million people all over the world have started spending more time on social networking sites than reading newspapers, listening to radio or watching television. The question is how this relates to nonprofits?
As mentioned above, social media helps create new connections and also assists in maintaining existing relations. Therefore it can be said that social media is all about growing the network of contacts. This can greatly help nonprofits.
Primarily, social media helps in creating awareness about the nonprofit organization, as word of mouth publicity is considered to be the best publicity. It has been around since time immemorial and helps in persuading and influencing people. Several organizations, through the use of social media, build connections and try to influence people to join their network.
The power of social media
Knowing social media is one thing but knowing how to harness the power of this media is a different thing altogether. Just log on to any social networking site, say Facebook, and create a fan page for your organization. This comes at no price. All you need is internet access and you’ll be able to set up a profile for your nonprofit. Provide the details of the organization on that page. Within no time you’ll be able to share information with your fans (if you’re on Facebook) and with your followers (if you’re on Twitter). Now when these fans and followers ask their group of friends to join your community or become a fan of your profile, this helps in creating more awareness about your organization’s profile and expanding the reach of the message.
Being a nonprofit, your primary aim of using the medium is to catch the attention of new supporters and to garner more support for the organization. Creating a different universe online for your organization can help generate more support for the organization.