How to use social media to conduct donor research

Social media can be a useful tool for charitable foundations because it can help them reach new leads. It can also provide insight into donor behavior, which can be used to shape marketing efforts, according to The Nonprofit Times.

Transformational gifts can take the nonprofit to a new level of capabilities because these large gifts allow the organization to advance and meet goals, but these donations can be difficult to secure. Contributors who are capable of making large gifts often need to be targeted, which highlights the importance of donor research. Gift-givers make the most significant contributions based on the causes they care most about rather than the metrics of the organization, Insight News stated. Nonprofits need to form deeper relationships with top contributors, so they need to gain insight into why these individuals are invested in certain causes.

Social media can be useful for identifying potential donors. For example, the nonprofit can investigate a prospect on LinkedIn and find their job title, as individuals at the manager level and higher may be more likely to give in larger amounts, The Nonprofit Times said. With proper targeting, first-time donors can be encouraged to give. If a prospect has expressed interest in the charity in the past but has not contributed yet, he or she may potentially give a large donation the first time.

Social media gives organizations an outlet to better identify prospects. Different groups carry varying degrees of influence in their companies, and by targeting the right people, nonprofits could gain a corporate donation.

Traditional data analysis strategies used by nonprofits sometimes contain gaps, and this can prevent organizations from targeting the right prospects because they are missing information. The more data nonprofits have, the more relevant they can make their communications to prospective donors, which can potentially help them collect greater donations. 

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