How to measure social media effectiveness

Nonprofits that are not using social media to increase their online donations requests are behind the curve and may not be doing their causes justice. Having an online presence is important, and social media is a large part of promoting on the Internet. In order to have a successful social presence, organizations should have a well planned approach and keep track of how efforts are faring. While it may seem as though social media promotional efforts simply involve setting up a profile and posting once every few days, it requires much more preparation and execution.

Why plan a social media campaign?
Social strategies are incredibly useful for spreading cause awareness and the various platforms offer a multitude of charity fundraising ideas to use throughout the year. Taking advantage of all of them involves a smart and powerful strategy.

Carrying out a successful campaign
A Salesforce blog post features the various steps of planning and tracking a social media campaign, saying the whole process starts with short- and long-term goal setting. Getting an idea of the bigger picture and the purpose behind the social media efforts is always important to determine before everything else. Additionally, set benchmarks for comparison purposes to see if the strategies are on track to success.

What metrics to pay attention to
In order to understand how social interaction affects donors and attracts attention from supporters, nonprofits should look at only a handful of useful metrics. Don't be bothered by the hype of certain metrics that other organizations are looking at. Measure what makes sense to the organization, whether that is number of followers, potential donors researching the brand or likes. Make sure the time spent measuring results will help make future strategies more useful. Share success with supporters and donors and then start a new and exciting campaign over again.

Nonprofits also have resources at their hands to help them measure social media progress, such as Google Analytics, which tracks website traffic. It will tell users how website visitors got to the website, how long they stayed and how many people visit the site daily, among other things, according to Forbes. Other resources to look into are Klout, which measure social influence, Wildfire's social media monitor and TwitSprout, which shows which tweets are retweeted. Such resources can help measure small, yet significant metrics for social media and tell organizations where they are succeeding and about areas in need of improvement.

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