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COVID-19 poses so many challenges to businesses struggling to stay afloat in these uncertain times.

For her SEJ eSummit session, Mary Davies, President of Beanstalk Internet Marketing, will share tips on how to use social media to build strong connections and long-lasting relationships with your user base and customers that will stand the test of time.

Here’s a recap of her presentation.

Connecting with people and focusing on the human element can create brand loyalty that lasts not only through the tough times but for years to come.

Here are three ways businesses can achieve this.

1. Be a Person Talk with – Not at – Your Followers

Followers are friends, not “food.”

Remember that you’re going to connect with them as a person.

You’re neither going to gobble them up nor try and sell them stuff all of the time.

One great way to do this is to talk with – not at – your followers.

Social media is their space, not yours.

You are simply a guest and you need to be respectful of that as a brand.

This is a space where people like to get together, share pictures of their babies, look at cat videos, post what they ate for dinner, and the like.

This is not a space that people go to to be sold.

Implement a 50/50 rule: half of your content is connection-based and the other half is promotional.

To to find this balance, try putting:

Connection type content in your profile or page.

You can go a little heavy on that sales pitch when you’re in the ad space. People are expecting that.

But when they come onto your page, you want to create an environment that they actually want to be a part of, seek out, and want to communicate with.

You can do that by:

Having discussions about tips on certain topics.

Hosting contests.

Empathize & Relate to Struggles & Frustrations

When we’re being a person, we also need to take the time to empathize and relate to struggles and frustrations.

Social media has a lot of complaining in it.

There are plenty of people who have a lot of big feelings about what went wrong.

You need to make sure that when you’re experiencing that as a social media manager, you have to try and take the time to find those areas where you can connect and relate to them.

This will help make them feel like they’re being heard and that you’re not just the brand.

They’re actually talking to a person on the other end.

If we take the time to let them know that we understand and that we’re relating, it breaks that barrier.

We can have a communication that can create long-lasting, actual connections and relationships.

Also, keep in mind that your long day is not their problem.

They’re probably having a long day when they’re having their rant.

There are times when you’re probably feeling the same and you’re not really in the mood for it.

But when you’re on the business side, it’s your job to take a step back and to make sure that you’re representing the business well and taking the time to relate to the struggle that they’re experiencing.

Here’s an example of how we can form that strong connection when we take some empathy and relate to a struggle.

Similar to what the business did, you can take this opportunity, not just say thank you, but also relate to them.

This is a time where we can go, Hey, I am a person and yes, I’m struggling just like you. And we’re in this together.

Be a Part of the Group/Discussion

It’s a way to acknowledge the time they’ve taken to communicate with your brand.

Knowing and using their language is also a good way to be part of the discussion.

Also, remember to let loose. A little humor goes a long way – and your followers will appreciate that.

Use Wording That Reinforces That You’re a Person

You can do this by:

Using personalized salutations (e.g., “Thanks for sharing your photo with us Mary!”)

Using terms like “community”, “group”, “family”, etc. (e.g., “We are so grateful for our amazing community!”)

Introducing yourself and use your name in messaging (e.g., “Hi Dave! It’s Mary here, how can I help you?”)

Talk to Them Where They Are

Leave your own profile and “like” their posts when you’re able to.

Be a part of the larger community via sponsoring or donating to events, contests etc.

2. Be a Source of Joy

Many people are probably already tired of the negativity all around.

Try to contribute in making social media a happy, positive space.

Here’s how.

Offer People the Chance to Participate in Positivity

At the beginning of the pandemic, some brands became hesitant to be push out contests.

This is what happened to one of Davies’ clients.

They thought hosting a contest was too celebratory, a little too joyous, and offensive because of the situation.

But she was positive that it was something their followers would want to see.

The result?

Great responses from participants.

Never React to Negativity, Find a Positive Way to Respond

Take a pause, if necessary, prior to responding.

Make sure you’re in a good frame of mind so that you can come into that conversation, ready to take whatever is going to come.

Always begin with gratitude.

You can either say “Thank you for taking the time to reach out to us.” or “We appreciate the feedback!”

Acknowledge each of their concern point by point.

This helps them feel like you’re reading, hearing and understanding their concerns.

You also have to keep your responses simple and easy to digest.

It will help them see that you’re noticing and listening to what their concerns are and you’re treating each of their individual concerns with respect.

Adopt a Positive & Supportive Brand Voice

This is massively important and can be incredibly lucrative.

Even when a lot of back and forth is involved, maintain a calm, constant, and positive communication style.

Be understanding and real – customers will appreciate that.

Share Positive Feedback From Your Community With Your Community

This is an awesome way to keep that positivity rolling on your profile or page.

When people see that they’re being acknowledged, they’ll get excited to see their review up there.

They’ll also see when they’re not up there and they’ll go, “Oh, I need to go write a recommendation because I want to be featured in that.”

This also shows them that other people do look at you in a positive light and enjoy you as a brand.

We don’t want to gloat about it.

This is different than just highlighting one review or testimonial, because that can almost look as a sales tool.

When we do it in this respect, people will see the post and think that it’s a community that they want to be a part of.

3. Go Above & Beyond Sacrifice Where You Can to Support Your Current Customers

We want to focus on keeping our current customer base happy.

Here are a few ideas:

Offer coupons and discounts.

Make one off exceptions to rules.

Offer payment plans.

Give freebies.

Invest in customer appreciation.

Highlight What You Are Doing That Others Aren’t

We want to figure out the roadblocks customers are facing when dealing with competitors.

To find out what those are, you can:

Search related groups for competitor name mentions.

Read current Google, Yelp, Facebook, reviews, etc.

If you’re already addressing those concerns, make sure to highlight that.

In ecommerce, one common issue with online retailers are shipping times.

This example shows how one brand highlights that in their social media cover photo.

What Else Can Be Done?

Mary also shared how she runs her business during these tough times:

Reducing rates for long-term clients, even free for some.

Upping services to boost clients as much as possible in hard times so they can thrive when things start up again rather than play catch up.

Being available to talk, not just about our services but as a fellow business owner who can empathize with the current stresses.

Doing everything she can to maintain the strong connections they have built with our clients, who are also “friends”.


Here’s a cheat sheet to help you use social media to survive and thrive in tough times.

Be a Person

Talk with – not at – your followers.

Empathize and relate to struggles and frustrations.

Be a part of the group/discussion.

Use wording that reinforces that you’re a person .

Talk to them where they are.

Be a Source of Joy

Offer people the chance to participate in positivity.

Never react to negativity. Find a positive way to respond.

Adopt and consistently use a positive and understanding brand voice.

Share positive feedback from your community with your community.

Go Above & Beyond

Sacrifice where you can to support your current customers.

Highlight what you are doing that others aren’t.

Watch This Presentation

You can now watch the video of Davies’ full presentation from SEJ eSummit.

More Resources:

Image Credits

All screenshots taken by author

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How To Track Social Media Campaigns Using Google Analytics

Understanding how GA ‘UTM’ values can give you more insight into your social media marketing

This form of media has now become an integral part of our lives and continues to evolve. A few years ago the emphasis was on B2B companies being active and creating pages on sites such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter… now the conversation has swung and is moving towards the idea that every marketing campaign must be social.

With every month that passes, there seems to be an endless stream of new channels, terminologies, and the dialogue can be fascinating. But it can be very easy to get caught up with the new innovations and forget about what you’re currently doing. It seems that before you have got to grips with one channel there is another one to topple that, and it requires your undivided attention.

The evolving digital landscape

The latest research on the use of different social networks shows that there is a huge choice of existing social media channels and a stream of new channels. We need to keep an eye on the new options, but this can sometimes get in the way of making social media marketing measurable in a meaningful way. We are too busy ‘doing’ social and trying to figure the best way of using them so measurement can be neglected.

As the digital world keeps expanding (let’s not forget you are dealing with email, website, PPC, SEO, remarketing, and content to name a few) it is very easy to get overloaded and overlook the key reason you attempted social in the first place.

Interestingly the ‘social’ nature of these channels are really useful for engaging prospects and customers (here’s a really interesting infographic summing up the 6 major social channels). Rather than the dodgy reputation that haunts sales departments (‘why are they not listening to me? Maybe it’s end of the month and they need to hit their commission’), social media allows you to build a relationship in an informal, personable, low-pressured way. Sounds like a good thing to do right….?

Measuring social engagement

So you need a way to measure engagement and how this translates to business results on your site.

When we talk to customers we find that most B2B marketers are naturally cynical and fall into one of two camps when it comes to social media marketing:

1. Those not doing it and thinking it is a waste of time and

2. Those doing it and wondering if it is a waste of time.

There’s that niggling feeling that there must be a way to make social media work that just won’t go away. In our experience that uncertainty is born out of a total lack of meaningful measurement.

Social media has a whole range of self-fulfilling metrics that enable those charging for their social media services to justify their own existence. The value of a retweet to the bottom line of your business is quite intangible.

Like any marketing activity, we must be able to track and measure its ROI. What is it delivering to the business in terms of opportunities? You cannot improve what you cannot measure after all.

Introducing how to use Google Analytics UTMs for measuring social media marketing

Do you know what UTMs are and do you use them? If you answer ‘no’ I would suggest you’re missing out since tracking campaigns with them is one of the most underused and undervalued things in digital marketing.

At a practical level UTM parameters are bits of text added to the end of your URL, technically called a query string since they’re separated by a question mark from the web address.

For example, a URL with UTM values from this post taking you to CommuniGator’s GatorSocial page could be tagged as:

It helps you track where your links are coming from but more importantly the actual source and content. Once you have goals setup in Google Analytics you can use them to track all of your links and measure the success of marketing activities, like social media and guest blog posting.

To explain the full details of measuring social media, download our social media measurement whitepaper which will help you get the most out of you social media and make sure you are able to ascertain what value it is providing to your business.

The paper covers the five key areas below – I hope you enjoyed the read and find it useful.

1. Social Profiles: First Impressions Count

2. Audiences: Follow You, Follow Me

3. Content: A Kingsize Challenge

3. Analytics: Meaningful Measurement

4.Conclusion: Managing the Marketing Mix

Image Credit / Copyright: Marcel De Grijs/ 123RF Stock Photo.

Thanks to Simon Moss for sharing his opinions and thoughts in this blog post. Simon Moss is a Chartered Marketer with over eight years’ marketing experience gained primarily in the B2B marketplace. He currently looks after the marketing for CommuniGator and WOW Analytics, a leading digital marketing agency providing email marketing solutions and cutting edge technology that enables you to maximise the value of every visit to your website – identifying and naming prospects visiting corporate websites. You can follow him on LinkedIn or connect on Twitter. For more information on lead scoring and to receive a demonstration and trial, visit the WOW Analytics website or call us on 0844 880 2899.

Social Media Archiving For Government: How To Stay Compliant

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What is social media archiving for government agencies?

Social media archiving for government agencies is a component of open records laws. Social media is a public forum, and must be archived as such.

How is social media archiving regulated in the government sector?

Social media archiving regulations vary by country, and even by state. The common component is that social media is generally considered a public record.

The requirements for archiving are quite specific and can include:

Collecting social media metadata

Maintaining a record of content in its original format

Keeping social media records for s specific period of time

Maintaining data in a specific geographic location

Each jurisdiction also has its own privacy regulations. These impact what government agencies can post on social media. For example, the Government of British Columbia has Guidelines for Government Use of Social Media. These specify that the following topics are off-limits:

Anything currently going through the court system

Information about identifiable third parties without statutory authorization

Citizen engagement can encourage people to share personal information on social media. This is especially true when people share photos. This is a particularly important area to consider when thinking about data collection and archiving.

How to archive records on social media and stay compliant

Social media compliance is an ongoing challenge for all government agencies. Especially for those involved in active citizen engagement.

You need a comprehensive strategy for social media archiving. This ensures you have all the records you need to:

comply with legislation

respond to FOI requests,

address First Amendment challenges, and

improve transparency in government.

Set up archiving policies and procedures

Like any good compliance strategy, your archiving system must be built on a solid foundation. Your archiving policies and procedures are the supports upon which all of your recordkeeping is built.

As you build your policies, do a thorough review of the legislation applicable in your jurisdiction to make sure you comply with every detail.

For example, Australia’s privacy and public data policies require social content to be archived in Australian data centers. That means Australian government agencies can only work with archiving solutions that have data storage options within Australia – like Brolly, which is built into Hootsuite.

Build your archiving policies and procedures into your overall social media guidelines. That way, all staff who deal with social media have easy access to your most current policies at all times.

Bonus: Get a free, customizable social media guidelines template to quickly and easily create recommendations for your company and employees.

Be sure to include a clear process for approving new social media accounts. The more accounts your agency uses, the more you need to archive. Does every department need its own social channels? Perhaps they do, but there should be a strategic purpose for each new account. Before any new account goes live, make sure to add it to your archiving process.

Capture and preserve all social media content

Like we said above, social media content is considered part of the public record. That includes ALL social media communication on or with your social channels.

You might wonder why you need a special archive of your social media content. After all, it’s publically available on your social accounts. But social media platforms themselves are private-sector companies. They are not subject to open records laws. That means there’s no guarantee the social platforms will preserve your content forever.

Plus, if you ever delete or edit content, you need to keep a record of those changes. Open records laws require you to archive every version or every post presented to the public.

identifying information,

threats of violence,


and so on.

You should even keep a record of all content in which you are tagged or mentioned, since this can count as communication. Monitoring content in which you’re tagged or mentioned is a best practice for all social media users. It’s an important way to understand the conversation about you online. For government agencies, it’s critical.

In other words, you need purpose-built social media archiving tools for government. This is the only way to fully archive the conversation with constituents and comply with the law.

As a side note, social’s designation as a public record means you cannot block people from following your government agency social accounts. Archiving is one part of compliance with public records laws, but it’s by no means the whole picture. Check out our detailed blog post for everything you need to know about compliance for government agencies using social media.

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Include metadata and contextual information

Why? Because a screenshot is just an image, and images can be edited. That’s why social media archiving for government must include metadata and contextual information.

What device they used

An archive with complete metadata and contextual information allows you to reconstruct an entire social media conversation. You’ll have details and content that would otherwise be lost.

Make archived content accessible and searchable

The whole point of archiving open records information is that you can access it and provide it to citizens or journalists that submit a freedom of information request. For that to work, your archive needs to be secure but easily accessible by the appropriate members of your team.

Failure to comply with a freedom of information request or legal challenge can have serious legal and financial consequences. A complete and easy-to-use archive helps protect your agency from lawsuits and other punitive action.

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Take this free 45-minute course and become an expert in government social media. Learn how to save time, connect with constituents, and build a compliant social strategy.

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Audit your process on a regular basis

Social media changes fast. Social media legislation doesn’t move quite as quickly, but you can’t assume it will stay the same forever. And the tools available to archive social media content and improve compliance continue to evolve.

That means you need to review your archiving process regularly. You can choose what “regularly” means to your organization, but plan for a thorough social media audit at least quarterly.

For government agencies, that social media audit should include an audit of your archiving process and procedures.

Make sure any new social media accounts have been added to your archiving system. Review the archiving policies and procedures with staff both old and new. Assign someone on your team to monitor any changes in legislation. Be sure to voice these at the regular reviews if they have not yet been addressed.

Social media archiving with Hootsuite

When choosing your social media archiving tools for government compliance, it’s important to work with a trusted and secure vendor. To ensure the security of government and citizen data, the U.S. government requires all cloud services used by federal agencies to pass the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program, aka FedRAMP.

Hootsuite is FedRAMP authorized. This identifies Hootsuite as a viable automated government social media archiving solution. Hootsuite also meets the requirements of FCA, IIROC, SEC, PCI, AMF, and MiFID II. This is why more than 2,000 government and public sector agencies use Hootsuite to manage their social media.

Hootsuite integrates with compliance solutions like ProofPoint and Brolly to keep your government social media presence secure. Brolly specifically creates a secure archive with social content, including context, metadata, links, images, and videos.

Inform and engage constituents, and manage archiving on social media with Hootsuite. From a single dashboard, you can schedule and publish content to every network, monitor relevant conversations, and measure public sentiment around programs and policies with real-time social listening and analytics. See it in action.

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See why Hootsuite is the #1 social media tool for government. Engage citizens, manage crises, and reduce risk online.

How To Fundraise On Social Media: 12 Tips To Increase Donations

Find out how to fundraise on social media, get inspired by examples of successful campaigns, and learn about the tools that will boost your efforts.

In 2014, pro golfer Chris Kennedy Tweeted a dare to three friends: dump a bucket of icy water on your head within 24 hours or donate $100 to support ALS. The now-famous ice bucket challenge went viral, raised $115 million in donations, and funded new treatments for the disease. The campaign set the standard for how to fundraise on social media.

Not every social media donation drive delivers such stunning results. There’s competition for scrolling thumbs, and the platforms themselves keep throttling the reach of organic posts.

But social media is still fertile ground for fundraising. Non-profits, universities, government agencies, and hospitals will find energetic supporters ready to help meet funding goals there. The trick is knowing how to do it.

How to fundraise on social media: 12 tips

But there’s more to promoting a fundraiser on social media than simply posting pretty pictures. These 12 tips show you how to create a fundraising strategy, network with followers, and track your progress.

1. Create a goal-oriented plan

Any social media fundraising campaign needs both a destination and a roadmap.

The destination is your goal. It’s probably based on dollars donated. But it could also include other key performance indicators (KPI) like total new donors, repeat donors, or average donation amount. Pick a reasonable target based on previous drives and a stretch goal. That’ll motivate your team to blow past previous campaigns.

The roadmap is your campaign plan. It’s the how and when that’ll lead to achieving your goal. Your social media campaign plan should include:

Start and end dates

The types of posts you’ll publish

Hashtags, both specific (like #ALSicebucketchallenge) and general (like #ALSsucks)

How people will donate

Roles and responsibilities for the team

A budget for things like paid post distribution if applicable

Consistency is key in social media. So while creating your plan, explain how you’ll publish content regularly. One option is to produce a batch of posts and schedule them for release at optimal times.

2. Pick the right social platform

The demographics of your donors and the type of content you’ll publish dictate which social platforms you use.

Here’s how each of the most widely used social media apps stacks up.

Facebook’s users skew older than the average audience on other socials. It’s also a versatile platform to post videos, images, long-form text, and managed events.

Instagram’s audience is concentrated between 18 and 34-year-olds. The platform is primarily visual, so it’s the place for a carousel of photos and videos.

LinkedIn is where professionals go to find jobs and talk shop. Regardless of age, this is where you’ll inspire corporate donations.

TikTok is the platform to use if your goal is to reach Gen Z; most people on the platform are under 34. Funny, educational short videos are the key to success here.

YouTube holds a unique position on this list as the place for long-form videos. They give you more space to tell a deeper story. There’s a cross-generational audience on YouTube, so just make sure your content matches your target demographic.

3. Optimize your content for mobile

Most people flip through social feeds on their phone (e.g., 97.4% of Facebook users access via the mobile app). You want your posts to shine on small devices.

Here’s a fundraising post from Water for People that’s optimized for mobile.

See how they shortened the link via chúng tôi That’s another way to keep the copy tight. They also put the full link in their bio. IG doesn’t let you link in captions, so make sure donors know where to go.

One thing missing from this post is a donate button so followers could donate without leaving Instagram. We’ll explain how that works in a minute.

4. Show and tell your story

Researcher Paul Zak uncovered an interesting truth about our brains. We’re more likely to support a cause when we hear stories about it.

That’s why your fundraising posts should include emotional stories about the people, places, or animals you help.

The Make-A-Wish team is masterful at telling stories on YouTube. Their features show supporters how their donations change lives. Watching a child, who’s been through the roughest of times, meet their hero is a powerful motivator.

These videos are beautifully produced, but you don’t need a professional videographer or voiceover pro to create yours. Sixty seconds of iPhone footage or a well-timed photograph can be just as persuasive. Combine it with a quick paragraph on how your organization uses funds, and new donors will jump at the chance to help.

Alright, you’ve captured the hearts and minds of new supporters with your fabulous posts. But if it takes seven steps to donate, some givers will move on. Luckily, Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok let donors give without leaving the platform.

Here’s an adorable example from the Hotel for Homeless Dogs. They presented a carousel of cute canines, then added a fundraising link to the post.

Facebook also has an automated thank-you tool to show appreciation without extra work on your team. And several apps let you add donate stickers or buttons to live streams so donors can give during live events.

6. Use your bio

Posts are usually the star of your social media fundraising campaign. But don’t forget your bio. It’s valuable space you can maximize on every social media platform.

Check out how St Jude’s Children’s Hospital uses its profile to raise money.

The bio is so effective because it has:

a “Donate Now” button that links to their donation website

a fundraising link so followers can donate and share from Instagram

a link to their store

several pinned Stories that show other ways to give

That’s an efficient use of valuable real estate.

7. Enlist your supporters

The network effect is influential on social media. A single request can find its way onto thousands of feeds when people share it around.

The American Heart Association tapped into the network effect with its #keepthebeat challenge. They asked followers to share a video with creative ways to move to a beat. Dancing, bouncing, and even kicking were all on the table.

People posting videos challenged three friends to find their own way to keep the beat. Each post included a text-to-donate number so viewers could donate from their phone.

Peer-to-peer fundraisers like this are popular on social media and there are several versions of them. Birthday campaigns—where users post your donation link on their birthday—are simple. Giving days, like #givingtuesday, are common, too.

8. Collaborate with creators and KOLs

It takes time to build an audience of passionate patrons. Shortcut the process by tapping into the existing networks of popular social media creators and key opinion leaders.

Step one, find the right partner for your fundraiser. Aim for someone who has an audience you want to reach and a vibe that matches your goal. Here, the British Red Cross collabed with men’s lifestyle guru Ehab Ali.

Ali showed sharp dressers they could find fine fashions in the BRC resale shops, and support a great cause at the same time.

Ali and the BRC used Instagram’s Collaborate feature. You can see that both accounts are tagged. That means BRC’s followers and Ali’s audience sew the reel. Your partners can also add donate buttons to their posts or links to your giving pages in their bios.

However you decide to collaborate, don’t worry about finding top-tier celebrities with massive audiences. (Although if Selena Gomez wants to shout out your org, even better.) Look for micro-influencers with a few thousand followers that are easier to reach. Or partner with like-minded corporations or other non-profits. Whatever helps you boost the signal to new audiences.

Bonus: Get the influencer campaign template for brands to easily plan your next campaign and choose the best social media influencer to work with.

9. Consider paid posts

Social media algorithms prioritize posts from close connections. That’s great for user experience but makes reaching donors difficult with organic posts. One solution is to spend on sponsored posts.

Sponsored posts, Tweets, or videos are available on almost every social media channel. The best part is that you can pick an ideal audience to view your donation requests. Say your organization helps people overseas like the World Food Program does. You could tell Facebook to show your post to travel enthusiasts.

Source: World Food Program USA on Facebook

You can target an audience by demographics like location, age, interest, or activity like former donors. You can even find a “look-a-like” audience with similar characteristics to people who already follow you.

Of course, the downside to sponsored posts is the cost. But if you start with a small investment, it won’t break the bank to test the waters. Then use metrics to see what’s working and focus your budget on the places with the highest return.

10. Say thanks and celebrate the wins

You set benchmarks for success in your plan. When you hit them, celebrate publicly and thank all the donors that helped get you there. You’ll remind current supporters that their help matters and sweep new donors up in the excitement.

When the American Heart Association hit a million-dollar milestone in one of its campaigns, people took to TikTok to share the love.


THANK YOU!! YOU ALL & so many others have come together to raise $1,038,645.56 & counting for the American Heart Association! This life-changing accomplishment and milestone will save lives for years to come. This is a testament that the power we have when we come together is unlimited. ❤ @kfiercce @kristinekapow @kickinitwithk20 @marriedwithflaws @nadines_heart @scottdhenry @shannonwinnington @duetraiders @swoledds @thehealingheart @themccartys @vanessacutting

♬ original sound – American Heart

The beauty of this strategy is that the AHA supporters did all the work. Plus, they shared the post with their network, expanding its organic reach beyond the charity’s page. That’s a lot of exposure for their fundraising campaigns without a lot of work put on volunteers.

11. Track and analyze performance

The best results analysis includes both big-picture views and granular, post-level tracking. A few metrics to review include:

Engagement rate



Profile visits

You can pull these metrics individually from each platform. Or you can create a custom dashboard in Hootsuite that collects data from several social media apps.

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It’s much easier to compare when you can see like-for-like results from each social media app. And with Hootsuite, you get benchmarks from your industry to know how you compare.

Most fundraising organizations run lean. There’s never enough time to do all the work that needs to get done. The right social media tools let your team work more efficiently and effectively.

Social media platforms offer options to help fundraisers get a leg up on other organizations.

Facebook’s fundraising suite includes donate buttons, supporter fundraising campaigns, and automated ‘thank you’ replies.

Instagram offers support buttons, fundraiser posts, donation stickers, and several ways to collaborate with creators and celebrities.

YouTube’s non-profit program gives you dedicated technical support and Link Anywhere Cards—links that direct viewers to your fundraising website (there’s also a YouTube program specifically for education organizations).

TikTok for Good has plenty of crowdfunding campaign ideas and fundraiser tools, including account management support.

You’ll also need a fundraising landing page if you don’t already have one built into your website. Donorbox and Little Green Light are good options.

For creating, scheduling, and managing social media posts and campaigns, Hootsuite has you covered.

Composer is where you’ll build and schedule posts in Hootsuite. You can write text, add images and videos, and even design posts using Canva (without leaving the Hootsuite dashboard).

There’s a Grammarly plugin to avoid any embarrassing spelling mistakes. Plus, Composer will suggest the optimal time to publish your post.

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You’ll likely post on a variety of social media platforms. In Hootsuite, you can manage all your paid and organic posts from Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. And as mentioned, you can view the analytics in one place.

How to fundraise on social media: FAQs Can social media be used for fundraising? Can I fundraise on Instagram? Which social media platform is the best for fundraising?

The best social media platform for fundraising depends on your donor demographics and the types of content you’ll share. Facebook and Twitter users skew older, TikTok younger, and Instagram has a more multi-generational audience.

How do I get people to donate on social media?

Social media is a flexible communication channel with many methods to motivate donors. You can post a direct donation link to your account, ask followers to create fundraising posts on your behalf, and collaborate with creators to tap into their network of followers.

Use Hootsuite to manage your next fundraising campaign on social media. From a single dashboard, you can schedule and publish posts across networks, engage the audience, and measure results. Try it free today.

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Do it better with Hootsuite, the all-in-one social media tool. Stay on top of things, grow, and beat the competition.

How To Create A Social Media Profile That Is Impossible To Ignore

How to Create a Social Media Profile That Is Impossible to Ignore

I’m avid social media marketing user.  It’s through social media that I have connected with fellow entrepreneurs, bloggers and business owners from all over the world.

One of the things that I love to do a regular basis is browse around social networks and make new connections.

Whenever I am checking peeps out on social networks the first thing that I do is head over to the view their profiles.

Can I be honest with you?

I’m not very impressed most of the time with what I’m seeing. On a regular basis, I’m seeing:

Uninspiring and “ambiguous” profiles that leave me pretty confused about who the person chúng tôi what they do

Or …even worse, peeps trying to be too clever with the verbiage they use in their profiles

You know….stuff like:

#YOLO #Snorkler #AlldayLong

When I run across a profile like this, I’m left thinking: What the heck does all of this even mean?

Why Great Social Media Profiles are So Important

Well…for starters, when people are surfing around on social media your profile is the first thing that they come in contact with.

And in most cases with social media networks, you only have 150 characters or less to make a great impression.  Use your words wisely my friend.

There is no reason to go stuffing your profiles with useless words that don’t mean anything to the people they will matter to the most:  your visitors.

Think about it this way:

When you are browsing around on social networks, are you more likely to trust:

A user with no profile picture, a logo and a username with a ton of alphabets

Someone with a personable photo, a username and an inspiring bio

If you’re anything like me, you would definitely trust someone with the latter profile more. Besides, people want to connect with people on social media, not logos.

Tips for Creating a Social Media Profile that Is Unforgettable

Ready to create an inspiring social media profile that is impossible to ignore? Check out this list of tips to get started:

#1:  Brand your profiles

You don’t want to blend in with all of the other million people on social media.

Am I Right?

Welp, then you definitely need to brand your social media profiles with consistent color schemes and etc. This is one of the reasons I created blog and social media branding kits.  As I come across more social media profiles, I’m seeing a lot of profiles that lack visual appeal.

If you want people to take notice of your profiles, then one of the ways to do it through visual branding.  From your Twitter profile to Your Facebook page, to your Pinterest account, all of them should both have the same look and feel.   

#2:  Show off your personality

I love running across social media profiles where peeps let their personality shine through.  


#3:  Clearly communicate what you do and who you do it for

Here again, clear beats clever any day of the week yall.

I talked about this a lot more in one of my blog posts covering why your social media profiles may not be getting you business opportunities.

If you are a writer that helps busy bloggers, say that in your profile.  If you create websites and blogs for businesses, say that. You just need to make sure that when people visit your profiles, they can walk away with clarity — knowing what it is that you do. 

#4.  A personable and approachable picture used consistently

Guys, please dont use logo’s in the place of your profile picture.  People don’t want to connect with a logo, they want to engage and connect with people.  

I understand in certain circumstances that you may have multiple profiles: one business related and one personal. But, in my experience with using social media, profiles with pictures of “real” people tend to do a lot better than profiles with logo’s.  

Oh and another thing, try to use the same picture or a variation of your picture on all of your profiles.  It looks a little “cray” to use a picture from 1990 on your Twitter profile, then a different one on Facebook. #ConsistencyfortheWin!

# 5.  Share insightful + helpful content with your community

Give your readers a reason to follow you, then one of the ways to do it is with sharing helpful content.  With social media, there’s a time to promote, then there’s a time to share stuff that matters to your community.  

This is one of the reason’s that I love using Hootsuite to share content to my social media platforms.  Whenever I am out of content ideas, Hootsuite has a feature that pulls in specific content tailored to my audiences needs.

It’s a pretty dope feature y’all called “Suggestions“.  But, the majority of the time, I just take to the internet to find content based on what I am blogging about for a specific month, then share it out on social media.  When you share content that is helpful, people will want to connect with you.

I sure hope that these tips have been helpful for you peeps.  I know that for most people, putting much stock into social media profiles is an afterthought.

But remember, in the world of social media, your profile is the first thing that people see.  Use these tips to build profiles that make a lasting impression on your audience.

Thanks for reading!  

Social Media Marketing Planning Mistakes

6 mistakes that will doom your social media strategy

Sure, you can be active in social media without a plan, but a company that uses social media marketing without a clear idea of what they want to achieve, and the steps they need to take to get there, is usually going to waste a lot of time and money, without seeing a return.

I think that a written strategy document is crucial for online success. But of course, not all social media strategies are created equal! Many times, the factors that make the difference between success and failure do not just concern what is in the document. Equally important are the steps companies take before and after compiling it. Here are some of the mistakes I’ve seen with social media planning which I look to make businesses aware of.

6 mistakes to avoid with your social media planning

Here are 6 of the most common mistakes, in the planning process and some ideas on how you can avoid them.

1. You don’t do your homework

Contrary to common perception, a social media strategy is not the first step you take when you decide to ramp up your efforts online. If you’ve already been dabbling on social media or implementing a strategy that is just not showing results, you first have to audit your previous efforts, to figure out what’s worked and what hasn’t, and what foundation you have to build on.

Ideally, you want to audit what your competitors are doing too, as their strategy will directly inform yours. You need to know where you are behind, where there are gaps in the market, and what tactics they are using that you can learn from (an enormous time-saver).

Last but not least, it is hard to build a really effective social media strategy without properly researching your target audience. Ideally, you want to build buyer personas, so that you know exactly who you are trying to reach, and what kind of material will speak to them.

Barring that, you should still look at any research your company has conducted into its client base; talk to your sales and marketing team; monitor relevant conversations on social media and so on, to build up as good a picture as you can get.

The more facts you have, the better your strategy will be. To get an idea of what should go into a social media review, Smart Insights Expert members can download the social media audit template or example social media plan I have developed based on the approach we use.

2. You write your strategy alone

In a larger company, as head of marketing, communications or social media, it may be tempting to handle the whole strategy process within your own department. Perhaps you understand social media better than anyone else in your company or are keener than anyone else to get going?

Ultimately this will work against you, because the social media strategy needs to be widely accepted across your organisation. Get other internal stakeholders involved early in the process. The last thing you want is to develop a detailed strategy that is roundly rejected when your CEO, fellow Directors or legal department finally get their hands on it!

Beyond the political aspect, there are practical implications to working alone as well. Your online marketing will be far more effective if it is properly coordinated with your offline marketing. If someone else is in charge of that area, it is absolutely essential that you work closely with them on developing your social media strategy, and not inform them of your decisions after the fact.

3. You start with the platforms

All too often, the first decision companies make when developing their social media strategy is which platforms they should be present on. In reality, this should be the very last decision you take.

Before you ever get to that stage, you need to figure out your goals for social media (do you want to build your reputation? Grow your client base? Simply monitor conversations that are relevant to your brand?).

How you achieve these goals will form your strategy: We’ll use social media to reach out to potential referrers, or to build up our email database, or to develop our thought leadership (for example).

Which platforms you are going to use are a tactical detail! Only once you’ve figured out what you want to achieve and how you are going to do it, can you decide whether Facebook, Twitter or Instagram will be the best vehicle for your purpose.

Doing it the other way round will mean that your strategy is inside-out. It’s like deciding that you’re going to buy a Porsche before working out why you really need a new car (to get the kids to school each morning) and what type would be best (a 7-seater so you can join a rota with another family).

4. Your strategy is too long

Granted, you want your strategy to be comprehensive. But you also need your team to be able to refer to it easily. If you expect them to ever read it, keep it as short and light as you can.

Often it will still be too long, so create a one-page summary of the most important points, which they can refer to at a glance.

5. You distribute it and then forget about it

Too many strategies end up in a draw gathering dust. If you want your strategy to be actively used, you need to take a proactive approach.

Show your staff that the strategy is updated with their practical issues in mind. Bring the strategy with you, and refer to it, during all meetings relating to your social media programme. Ensure that it is easily accessible to all relevant staff and that there is an electronic copy they can search easily.

It is up to you to ensure that the document is integrated into your daily activities and discussions, informing and guiding them, and not treated as a Platonic ideal that is great in theory, but ignored in practise.

6. You treat your strategy as a sacred document

Social media evolves fast and your strategy has to change with it. It is essential that you keep up with changes that might affect you, and not stick blindly to a social media strategy that might have been appropriate 3 months ago, but is suddenly under-performing.

Your document must not become a convenient excuse to stick with a failing strategy!

Treat it as a living document.

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