by Christine Schaefer, VP of Community and Marketing, Salsa
Social CRM is centered on the premise of interacting with your supporters based on their needs, not your rules. It is an evolving concept that has become more and more important as organizations look to engage with their supporters.
Unfortunately, too many organizations are not seeing the benefits of social media and are continuing on with traditional activities. Even worse, they are still using generic messages in their email blasts and fundraising efforts and not taking the time to know their supporters and effectively incorporate social media into those campaigns.
People are on email overload. They prefer social media where they can control the pace as well as what is important to them. Nonprofits and political organizations today need to be prepared for the social conversation by taking the first steps – listening and going where the conversation is happening.
You may not think you have time for social media, but it is going on around you. Users are now in control of a significant part of your message, not just as users, but as influencers. Individuals are influenced by friends, friends’ friends and friends’ friends’ friends. Take advantage of the discussion, find out who your supporters online are, personalize your message and make sure they are involved with your cause.
By integrating social media with your email lists, you can:
Identify the influencers – Not every supporter on your list is equal. Some have greater reach than others and it is important that you identify and segment those. Determine who interested in your cause. See who they follow and what messages resonate with them most. Your key influencers will push your message to their lists, reaching a far wider network.
Increase fundraising – Imbedding social media into your emails opens multiple channels for communications, increasing donations. And with a simple click of the mouse, supporters can complete donations in seconds, directly through their email. No forms to fill out, no credit card information to input, just click and give.
Maximize your message's life span – Ask your followers share your message on their Facebook pages and to retweet to their groups, maximizing the shelf life of your message. Young supporters are on social media (nearly 90 percent) but older supporters are adopting social media at a rapid pace (almost 43 percent of Americans over 65 use at least one site)*. And don’t just ask once – add your website, email and social media to all of your materials.
Social media has altered the way nonprofit and political organizations communicate online. Segmenting your supporters and creating a more meaningful message are key factors to successfully engaging your online supporters. By offering personalization, you are building a relationship by saying I understand you and your needs. And at the heart of personalization, lies analytics - knowing who your supporters are and what they want and like. Make it about them.
*Source:Pew Research Center via Mashable