How to Convince Your Board Social Media Has Value

BoardWe all know social media is not free and most nonprofits struggle with time, money and resources. They set up a Facebook page or Twitter profile and then have no one to really manage or monitor it.  Thus it fails and then the Board gives a sly grin that says, “I told you so!” because they never really understood the value of all of that social media stuff anyway since it wasn’t bringing in any real donations. *Sigh*

As the President or Executive Director of a nonprofit you need to be able to justify your social media presence to your Board and staff and you probably need to show some return on investment (ROI).

The best way to do this is to get them bought in ahead of time, but if you’re a day late and a dollar short on that then focus on providing them a presentation (or webinar) on what the benefit is of being on the networks you are on and show them what little steps they can take to amplify your mission and messages by giving them case studies.

The Board needs to know the following:

  1. The # of fans or followers is irrelevant, it’s about the quality of the fan or follower.
  2. Your nonprofit is only as strong as your community and the community starts with the Board and the staff first. Lead by example.
  3. Tiny tasks such as “liking” content on Facebook, becoming a Fan of your nonprofit page, utilizing LinkedIn to amplify your message just by posting a status update in their profile — goes a long way. (See this pdf handout)
  4. Every company/brand/nonprofit needs to invest in marketing. Social media is just a cheaper way of doing that, and it’s imperative they understand that it’s not free.
  5. When other members of those social networks see the names of people they know on your list of supporters they will be inclined to take action and possibly donate.
Miss our blog from last week on 5 steps your Board can take on LinkedIn to amplify your cause. Check it out here.
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About Tracy Sestili

Tracy Sestili is CEO and Chief blogger at Social Strand Media. She is also the author of Taking Your Brand from the Bench to the Playing Field -- Social Media Fundamentals for Business.