Social Media & NonProfits: Make it Easy for Your Fans to Help You

June 5, 2008 at 12:16 am 14 comments

The internet encourages people to pass on music and other stuff they are passionate about.

Causes are a perfect fit!

Here are just a few things Nonprofits and their Fans can do to encourage their message to spread:

— Nonprofits: What can you do? —

  • Make it cool.
    “Nothing but Nets” succeeded, in part, because it simplified a big issue: buy a child a $10 net, help prevent the spread of malaria. An easy message to absorb and pass on. And $10 is an amount most everyone can give. Awesome.. (See New York Times, “A $10 Mosquito Net Is Making Charity Cool“)
  • Fun it up.
    Games can go a long way to educating people in an interactive way. (e.g. Games for Change, World Without Oil)
  • Tell a story.
    Numbers are dull and impersonal. People relate to stories. Who is affected? What is happening? (See “Social networking sites help nonprofit tell stories, raise awareness“)
  • Don’t be cruel.
    Don’t play “find the donate button” with potential donors.
    Your request for donations, if important to your cause, should be clear, prominent and distinctive. (See “I Can’t Even Give It Away (Or “A Brief Review of Donate Buttons on Non-Profit Websites”)
  • Blog, Blog and Blog Again.
    Talking and listening is critical in the Web 2.0 sphere. Begin the conversation and encourage interaction. (See “5 Tips to Start a Nonprofit Blog”)
  • Tag – We’re All It.
    Encourage people to use tags. Basically, “think of a tag as a simple category name. People can categorize their posts, photos and videos with any tag that makes sense.” Using the same tag means related information can be found with ease – on, Flickr, Youtube etc . – as well as aggregated into feeds. (See “Make your nonprofit more effective with RSS aggregation”)

—Supporters: What Can You Do?—

(Oh & take a look at some of the tips given to nonprofits above. They apply to you as well.)

Make use of social media to help you mobilize, inform and educate and get your message around.

YOU have the message and the tools.

Now go spread the word.


Bibliography and Further Resources:

& Thanks to Joe Solomon and Elijah van der Giessen for your wonderful help!


Oh & if the video below doesn’t demonstrate a great way a message can be conveyed – I don’t know what does.

Presenting…. Internet Celebrities in a music video supporting Net Neutrality:

add to :: Add to Blinkslist :: add to furl :: Digg it :: add to ma.gnolia :: Stumble It! :: add to simpy :: seed the vine :: :: :: TailRank

My Related Posts:

Flickr and Nonprofits

YouTube and Nonprofits

Facebook, MySpace and Nonprofits

Twitter and Nonprofits

More NonProfit Social Media Ideas


Entry filed under: 1, crowdsourcing, marketing - general, nonprofit, social media, Web 2.0. Tags: , , , , , , , .

Out-Smarts Interview “6 Ways Social Media Can Improve Your Life” – now on PicktheBrain

14 Comments Add your own

  • […] but not least is one of the first people I met at Vancouver's Third Tuesday social media event, social media consultant Monica Hamburg […]

  • 2. CT Moore  |  June 6, 2008 at 1:05 pm

    About social media and non-profits, you should ask Jay Grandin about his latest project.

  • 3. Britt Bravo  |  June 7, 2008 at 11:21 am

    Thanks for this list, and for linking to 5 Tips to Start a Nonprofit Blog!

  • 4. Raul  |  June 10, 2008 at 9:35 pm

    Hi Monica,

    I rarely disagree with you at all, but I seriously have to disagree on the “start a protest”… unless the target government/actor is located within the geographical area of influence of the protesters, I would seriously argue AGAINST organized protests. All those VAG protesters (Vancouver Art Gallery) – what effect to they have? Yes, I can 100% agree with their cause BUT they have very little to NO effect (and can be VERY disruptive).


  • 5. monicahamburg  |  June 10, 2008 at 10:58 pm

    @CT – I know Jay! and I will 🙂
    @Brit – Thank You.
    @Raul – Dare you disagree with me?! OK, but just this once 🙂

    While I do agree with protesting, my main point with that point was to show how social media can help organize people so they can more easily voice their opinion and find allies (protests, meetings etc.).

    I think protests exist to send a message – and to show solidarity and support for a cause. While I agree that many of the VAG protests are ineffective, I think it’s because it’s so sanitized and expected. And there’s a maximum of 10 people out for each cause… I’d be interested in how you’ve experienced the disruption…? (It’s pretty easy to cross the street in my experience).

    Are we done fighting now?

  • 6. Raul  |  June 10, 2008 at 11:22 pm

    Aww sweetheart 😉

    We never will fight – you are WAY too awesome for me to want to fight you 🙂

    However, I DO have a response to that specific point – I blogged about it but it’s queued for tomorrow 😉 I’m also linking back to this post.

    Much love 🙂


  • […] harness the power of Web 2.0 to make a difference”. I *still* am that guy. However, after reading a post of the always lovely (and really smart) Monica Hamburg, I started getting red flags… MAYDAY, MAYDAY! Somebody help […]

  • […] a cause? Social Media provides you with a myriad of tools to be part of a solution. Help spread the word get donations, organize gatherings and […]

  • 9. Social Media and NonProfits « Me Like The Interweb  |  September 23, 2008 at 2:28 pm

    […] Nonprofits and Social Media – Getting Your Fans to Help You […]

  • 10. Youtube and NonProfits « Me Like The Interweb  |  September 23, 2008 at 2:28 pm

    […] Nonprofits and Social Media – Getting Your Fans to Help You […]

  • 11. Flickr and NonProfits « Me Like The Interweb  |  September 23, 2008 at 4:23 pm

    […] Nonprofits and Social Media – Getting Your Fans to Help You […]

  • 12. Facebook, MySpace and Nonprofits « Me Like The Interweb  |  September 23, 2008 at 5:49 pm

    […] Nonprofits and Social Media – Getting Your Fans to Help You […]

  • 13. Twitter and NonProfits « Me Like The Interweb  |  September 24, 2008 at 11:43 am

    […] Nonprofits and Social Media – Getting Your Fans to Help You […]

  • 14. More Nonprofit Social Media Ideas « Me Like The Interweb  |  September 24, 2008 at 2:25 pm

    […] Nonprofits and Social Media – Getting Your Fans to Help You […]


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Monica Hamburg – Who Am I?

Good question (I wonder this all the time).
Linkedin profile is: here.
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