We look at five social media apps that charities could be using more to reach their audiences
There are so many social media apps out there and new platforms enter the market frequently. With limited resources, it can be incredibly difficult to make choices about where your charity should invest time and money on creating and maintaining a social media presence.
It is important to make audience-first decisions: Who do you want to reach? What information or messages do you want them to see? What actions do you want them to take?
Here are five platforms that could be missing from your strategy.
YouTube is the second most popular social media network and the second most popular search engine in the world, particularly among younger audiences.
As a search engine, YouTube offers an opportunity to showcase educational content, improve the quality of search results, and combat misinformation. YouTube is owned by Google, so videos on the platform are also given high priority in Google search results.
While many organisations may have a channel, investing time into organising content into playlists and creating content directly for the platform may provide valuable returns.
Through the pandemic, the role of live content has been increasingly important and the British Heart Foundation has responded to this with their monthly hour-long ‘Live and Ticking’ sessions on YouTube. Creating regular live or recorded content is a great way to draw audiences back to the channel and encourage subscribers.
Charities can also fundraise on YouTube. Currently there are a number of conditions that charities must meet to be eligible for YouTube Giving, including registration in the US, but it is expected that the criteria will be expanded to include the UK.
Pinterest is critical to the buyer journey of Millennial women (women aged 25-40). 71% of the platform’s users are women and pins showing a product or service in action are 67% more likely to result in a purchase.
Given the boom in e-commerce and with many charities re-modelling their retail operations, Pinterest could be a powerful tool in driving sales to your online shop.
One of the crucial advantages to Pinterest over other social media platforms is that the lifespan of a pin is around three months versus around 24 minutes on Twitter. Marie Curie has recently created a board for their online shop with sections based on interest areas.
The platform also offers paid advertising services to help you to direct shoppers to your ecommerce site.
TikTok has seen massive growth since its launch in 2018. It is now the ninth most popular social network worldwide and close to half of users are aged 18-24. It is the ideal place to target Generation Z and grow a community of the next generation of supporters, beneficiaries, and activists.
The platform itself is actively encouraging charity participation and has a dedicated TikTik for Good team. The British Red Cross has worked with the platform and four doctor creators on a first aid toolkit.
Educational content is a good way to get started on the platform. It could also be beneficial to reimagine hashtag challenges that could fit with your goals in some way.
Clubhouse is an audio-only, invite-only social media platform and is currently only accessible to iPhone users. Its exclusivity offers some interesting opportunities for major donor fundraisers.
Bringing your existing donors onto the platform may provide a shortcut for peer-to-peer fundraising efforts as donors invite their friends to join the platform and to engage with your content. The platform lends itself to intimate conversations with experts and senior staff, as well as panel events designed to make new connections with the peers of your existing supporters.
Brands, including charities, are starting to establish a presence on the platform.
Messaging apps or ‘dark social’ as they are sometimes referred to, are an opportunity to deepen your connection with your existing audiences. Charities can create a channel on the platform and broadcast messages to those who sign up for the channel. Messages can be shared with other users known to the recipient to spark conversations and interest.
You might share an item of news, alert subscribers to an upcoming media appearance from a charity spokesperson, or give inside information on a particular project or activity. Perhaps setting up a channel on a short-term basis to provide updates on a project or event.
As we remain in a phase where digital communication plays a more fundamental role in our daily lives, it will pay to be curious about where we might find our target audiences, where they are educating themselves, where they are making purchase decisions, and how their communication preferences have changed.