Twitter enables us to share and experience changes in the world and their impact on people no matter where they are in the world, allowing us to share events as they unfold.
There is something quite perfect about the way it captures how we feel in the moment, what we are experiencing and what we have seen through the pictures and the thoughts we share, connecting us directly to our supporters in these moments.
But, how can Twitter support your aims and what should you share. I’ve put together a collection of examples of how nonprofits can use Twitter to build support for your causes.
1. Getting to know your supporters
It is not enough that people understand what you do and believe in your cause, they need to believe in you, to love what you do. But how do you get people to care about what you do, to want to support you and help you. The key to success is to be likeable. Show the personality of your nonprofit, be professional but develop a unique style to emotionally connect with your audience, and ultimately make them want to be a part of what you do.
2. Show people what goes on behind the scenes
One way to help people to connect with your cause and your organisation is it to share glimpses behind the scenes. It is human nature to want to peek behind the curtain and see how everything works and clever posts can make people feel part of what you do and make them want to get involved.
— Corinne Baker (@RinBaker) March 14, 2013
3. Share pictures and stories of your employees in action
Another way to connect with potential supporters on a personal level is to share stories and pictures about the people behind the cause, working in the field, supporting people, passionate about what you do. After all your employees are your greatest advocates and believers.
4. Be fun and a little bit surprising
If you want people to engage with you they have to notice you. What is going to make you memorable? Why would someone choose to engage with your cause? By being a little bit different and a little unexpected you have a better chance of getting noticed, so take time to create and share interesting and entertaining content. Oh, and pictures of babies and pets always help!
5. Show donors why they should support your cause
Use Twitter to demonstrate the problems and challenges you are seeking to solve. If you can show the impact is having on the lives of the people you are helping. Provide urgency. Let people see why you need their help
6. Share stories about the people you help
People will care more if they can relate to what you do on a personal level. By conveying the facts through a real story about real people or animals or circumstances that others can follow, understand, and care about, you’re automatically giving them more reason to be invested in the cause at the heart of the story. Make them feel something, it doesn’t matter if you make them feel happy or sad, but making them feel something is essential.
7. Show them what you do
If you really want people to like you, to love you and talk about you and support the work you do you need to show people all the amazing things that you do. Twitter allows you to provide real time updates of the work you are doing and allow donors to see the impact of their support.
8. Show Them How They Can Make a Difference
Perhaps the most important thing you need to do is convince them that their efforts are worthwhile. There are a lot of good causes out there so you need to show people that they can make a difference and that their support will have a real impact. Show them what they have achieved by sharing the outcomes of the projects they have funded.
This is something that I would emphasis as essential to all parts of a non-profit, however Twitter provides the perfect mechanism to deliver pictures, stories and highlights of the work they have supported.
Sharing stories about the impact that you have had with the help of your supporters is the best way to show people that you are delivering outcomes that benefit individuals, families and communities
9. Let supporters share their stories
What better way to appeal to supporters than to let people who already support you share their stories. Create a Twitter list for your supporters, campaigns and events. Encourage them to share their stories, retweet, reply and share their experiences.
10. Thank your supporters
You can never say thank you enough, but the more personal and meaningful the more impact it will have, and the more liekly your supprters are to continue supporting you cause.
No matter what you do the key is using the right content for your organization to engage your audience, inform them about your mission, and then recruit them to support your cause—be it with financial support, with in-kind donations, or by volunteering. Knowing how to develop content that affects people is a big challenge but learning how to do this will reap dividends in securing support for your cause.