Using Social Media to Meet Nonprofit Goals: The Results of a Survey

Are social media channels working to help nonprofits engage their current audience? Recruit new supporters? Raise money? This 20-page Idealware report provides the results of our survey of 459 nonprofit staff member actively using social networking for their organization. It summarizes what nonprofits are using, and how well they th ink it works, for tools including Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, LinkedIn, blogs, photo sharing, and video sharing site.

What did we find? A f ew quick highlights to whet your interest:

  • Generally, respondents felt social media channels were effective for enhancing relations with an existing audience and reaching out to new supporters, but considerably less so for raising money.
  •  Twitter was in the top three channels for every goal, and was considered the most-effective channel for reaching potential new supporters.
  • Although Facebook was the most widely used tool by a considerable margin, and the one that those not yet using were most likely to start, it was seen as the most-effective only in terms of raising money—and then, only by a small margin.
  •  MySpace was not widely used, and ranked lowest for each of the three goals. LinkedIn was considered comparatively effective for fundraising, but lagged behind everything but MySpace for the other goals.

The survey analysis was made possible with the generous support of Firefly Partners, Balance Interactive, and Beaconfire.

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