So, a few weeks ago, the craigconnects team researched how the top 50 nonprofits do social media. We decided to dig a little deeper to find how nonprofits by area of focus use social media and what kind of an impact that they were having in the social media space.
From August to October of 2011 we analyzed the top 5 nonprofits in the following categories based on total expenses provided by Charity Navigator:
- Disaster Relief
- Veterans & Military
We researched how often organizations are posting on different social media platforms, what nonprofits are being talked about the most: mentioned on Twitter and talked about on Facebook, and whose words are having the most impact on their communities. And, we found some cool stuff:
- The most talkative category on both Facebook and Twitter are Animal and Environmental Organizations. Animal groups have a weekly average of 14 Facebook posts and 134 tweets. Environmental groups are close behind with 12 Facebook posts and 88 tweets per week.
- The least talkative on Facebook and Twitter are Veterans and Military organizations.
- People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is the most talkative Animal Organization per week, on average, on both social media platforms.
- The most engaged communities on Facebook are Children's Organizations with an average of 39 Fans per person are "talking about this."
- Only 1 nonprofit, out of the 40, does not have a Twitter account.
Out Of 21 Organizations We Spoke With:
- Only 1 does not have a designated social media person--neither part nor full-time.
- There are 14 full-time social media staff and 40 part-time.
- Organizations that focus on Animals, the Environment, and Women are the most staffed for social media.
More Staffing Data:
- Among the 4 responding Women's organizations there is one full-time staff social media staff and 13 part-time.
- All 5 Animal organizations had social media staff. There are 7 full-time staff and 6 part-time.
- Since hiring a FT social media person, ASPCA has seen tremendous growth over the past year: they have 75,000 Twitter followers (their following has doubled) and have surpassed 1 million Facebook fans by thousands.
- Out of 4 responding Environmental organizations there are 2 full-time social media staff and 14 part-time.
While it is remarkable to see the variations in social media use by area of focus among nonprofits, the bottom line is that your main concern should be to cultivate conversations, relationships, and interactions within your own specific community, whether it's 2,000 or 200,000 people. Work to move "your people" up the ladder of engagement, based on their needs. But know it will take an investment of staff time and resources to achieve this. These are the keys to keeping up in the fast-paced arena of social networks.
Check out the full infographic here.
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