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Six Tips for Foundations to Engage Their Audiences with Social Media

Soulclap to Sophia Guevara for publishing the following article in Re: Philanthropy .
When it comes to the use of social media, many foundations have decided to focus their efforts on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube to spread their messages. With most of these activities focused on advertising, how can a foundation use this technology for meaningful audience engagement?

I recently interviewed Cindy Johanson, executive director of the George Lucas Educational Foundation. In this podcast interview, I note the success the organization has experienced with its YouTube channel and Facebook and Twitter accounts. I was impressed by the number of channel views and Twitter followers the foundation was able to amass as I knew of several larger foundations that had not experienced anything close to this kind of success. How then, was Johanson’s organization able to achieve this?

Here are a few of her tips to help your foundation successfully engage its audience with social media:
  1. Use social media to support the audience and the organization’s mission. Don’t use it just for “blatant promotion.”
  2. Encourage more of your staff to take part in social media communication so that they all participate in the conversation.
  3. Listen to your audience’s online conversations and be aware of any challenges that may arise. Take action to let your audience know that they are being heard.
  4. Don’t use social media to hold a one-way conversation. Encourage two-way communication. Welcome your audience in a trusted way to encourage the conversation people want to have.
  5. Be aware of individuals who use the social media channel in an inappropriate way (promoting products, etc.). Try to engage these people offline.
  6. Know who your audience is and understand what they want from you. Don’t assume - communicate. Do your research and give them the information they need in a way that can promote action.

Do any of these six tips appeal to you as you work to engage your organization's members and supporters within the social media world?

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great article i enjoyed it                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           


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