Why would a voluntary sector organisation use Facebook?
Is it because,
- Facebook has more than 750 million active users
- Average user has 130 friends
- 50% of users log on each day
- People spend over 700 billion minutes per month on Facebook
Yes, Facebook is very popular! This was brought home to me when I visited Ireland recently to play some gig (I play music in my ‘spare’ time) and every venue I went into mentioned that they had promoted the gigs through their Facebook account.
Facebook isn’t just for individuals or for business use
Once a technology becomes mainstream for business it is also going to be important for Voluntary sector organisations; if a large part your audience are using Facebook, you can also use it to connect with that audience.
- It can help with your publicity: you can promote your activities for free as well as using Facebook adverts to target a very specific part of your audience (e.g. Males between the age of 50 and 60 – or Children over 16 who live in Glasgow).
- You can add a Facebook ‘page’, which is like a mini website; the only difference being that is is build within the Facebook where you can promote it to your Facebook friends. Pages can be used to grow your membership, sell a product, distribute a document or for basically anything you also do on a website.
- You can also send direct messages and interact with your ‘friends’ – who may also be your members, funders or trainees.
- On Facebook you can create and promote your events. Events pages are powerful as you can ask people to say if they are intending to come to your event or not; which can be useful for getting an idea of numbers who will turn up (if for example you are putting on catering). Having said that you should be careful not to rely on everyone turning up who says they will as in my experience the two are not the same thing.
- After an event you can upload a photograph of those who attended and then ask people to tag themselves in the photo. These activities can help to build a feeling of community amoung your contacts.
- You can also upload videos, participate in video chat, upload documents or write a blog. Facebook is a powerful and popular social networking website that can become a valuable tool to promote your organisation.
Get in touch if you would like to make better use of social networking tools such as Facebook, Twitter or Youtube or if you are looking to integrate these tools into your existing website.