Where Do Your Advocates Call Home?


How would you define the internet's role in our lives? To me, the internet works to empower human connectivity. Like a virtual town hall or an e-reunion, the internet provides a needed catalyst for social interaction. It empowers organizations by providing instant access to hundreds--if not thousands--of social channels, connecting organizations with advocates around the world. However, just because these channels exist, don't think you have to implement a meaningful strategy on each one. Instead, focus on maximizing the impact of your time and resources by choosing the right platforms for your strategy.

Here are some of the questions you should consider before launching your social media strategy:

-Have you defined your target audience? Always take time to define your audience early in your messaging plan. Who you want to reach should be driving your strategy. The hierarchy of engagement within your audience will determine how you should spend your resources.

-How does your audience consume media? Look at past campaigns that have successfully targeted your audience, what did they do well? See what you can learn from a competitor's research, and adapt their best practices. You can also look at outside studies, such as this study from the Pew Research Center, that outline demographic use of social channels.

-What do you want your audience to do? Clearly define the goal of your content. You should use this goal to determine which platform will help you achieve your specific purpose. Aligning your audience, issue and desired actions with the unique capabilities of each platform will help you to maximize the impact of your messaging. For instance:

  • The sheer number of users on Facebook make it a must-use for driving awareness of a specific cause. Facebook also holds the most personal information about people out of almost any platform which can help you target your content to your specific audience.
  • You can also use LinkedIn to effectively deliver highly targeted content by using the platform's ability to send targeted status updates based on a user's industry, seniority, job function, company size, geographic location, and numerous other demographics. While the cost of promotion trends higher, you have a firmer guarantee that your messaging will reach the right people.
  • For advocates looking to use Instagram, don't forget that 43% of the mobile app's users fall between the ages of 18-29. That means that some messages and issues will resonate better than others. Be sure to play to the platforms' strengths by using inspiring visuals! Check out my last blog for tips on sizing your photos for success.
  • Did you know 85% of Pinterest users are women? Women also account for 64% of donations given in the U.S.! Given those numbers - and the platform's ability to allow you to insert specific dollar amounts into each pin - Pinterest could have some real potential for your fundraising efforts!

If you make these three questions a part of your initial strategy plan, you can save valuable time and resources by avoiding platforms that do not fit your goals. For more tips on building an effective messaging strategy for reaching your advocacy audience, visit www.digitaladvocacyinstitute.com.