Quick tips for digital marketing in the charity sector

Digital marketing strategies tend to transcend business sector – but when it comes to execution there are often principles or tips that can be useful if you’re in a particular sector. This became apparent we got talking to a number of our marketing friends in the charity space. So here’s the headline tips we learned from them:

Think local

Research undertaken by Vandhamme et al in 2012 found that there is a tendency for people to favour local causes. Even if your charity tackles widespread issues on a regional, national, or international basis, demonstrate your dedication to local communities by letting them know what work you are doing in their area. A town or city specific social media presence can help you do this effectively.

Be responsive

If a social media movement relating to your cause takes off, be sure to jump on the bandwagon! As demonstrated during the ice bucket challenge phase and the no makeup selfie craze, getting on board with digital trends can raise large amounts of money for great causes.
Though this doesn’t require you to come up with an activity that will go viral, it does make it essential that you monitor the online environment. While monitoring and responding to comments on social networking sites is important for all businesses, it is arguably even more so in the case of charities – engaging potential donors or volunteers is key.

Be aware of the barriers to volunteering

A study by the NCVO discovered that prior commitments, such as work and studies, were the most common barriers to volunteering, but there are other barriers which charities have the power to break down. 14% of respondents to the study cited lack of awareness of volunteering opportunities, while 12% stated that they were unaware of any groups which needed help. Charities can overcome this and social is a great way to ask for support. Partnerships with local companies can be a fantastic way to raise awareness for local volunteering opportunities too.

Embrace transparency

Use your social media presence to let donors know how you’re spending their money – unsurprisingly, studies have found that people like to be made aware of the good being done with their donations.
So be sure to respond to social media comments, advertise your needs, and put emphasis on reaching local communities. Implementing these tips should help you to raise awareness of your cause, and to increase engagement with your charity.