So, you created a social media strategy for your nonprofit. Things were probably going pretty well at first. You shared a few posts, gained a few followers and started growing your social presence. But then, things slowed down. And now you have no idea what to post anymore. Worse yet, you forget to post, or no one on your team has the time to take it over. Now your accounts just sit there, with no one monitoring them.

Does this story sound familiar? All too often, nonprofit organizations try to jumpstart their social media marketing, but after just a few short months, keeping up to date falls to the wayside. How can you ensure your social media accounts stay active, engaging and promoting your cause? Simple—follow our social media strategy guide.

Outlining an effective social media strategy and creating a guide to stick to it will ensure posting gets done and will boost your online engagement, thereby increasing your fundraising efforts and fulfilling your mission. Is your current strategy lagging? Unsure where to start? We have you covered.

Establish your social media goals.

Clearly outline the goals you have for social media. If you currently have 100 followers on Facebook, perhaps you want to reach 300 followers by next month. Whatever your goals, make sure they are SMART.

S. Specific
M. Measurable
A. Attainable
R. Relevant
T. Time-bound

When your goals are SMART and you clearly outline your plan to achieve them, you will be more likely to accomplish them and grow your social media presence.

Write your social media strategy down.

Your team cannot simply think about a social media strategy and hope to put it into effect. No, a real guide offers an actual vision for your social media marketing and how you can grow your cause. The first step to accomplishing this is to simply write it down. When you write down your plan, you can stick to it, rather than hoping to accomplish your goals along the way.

Create a shared document for your team where members can add, edit and collaborate on your strategy in order to make it as efficient as possible. As you go through the guide over time, you can continue to edit and adjust it to fit your current goals most effectively.

Create a realistic timeline for your social media strategy.

With your SMART goals in mind, establish a timeline. Set a date you want your major goals to be accomplished by… say, six months from now. With this date in mind, set up a timeline for the next six months with smaller, easier-to-accomplish goals which will lead you to your ultimate objective.

For example, if you currently have 100 Twitter followers, but want 500 in six months, then you need to gain about 67 followers per month for the next six months. Achieving 67 followers happens to be a lot easier to add than 400, right? Create an overall timeline, then establish how you plan on getting there through a weekly calendar.

How often will you post? What do you plan on posting? Consider the platform. It’s much more common to post on Twitter multiple times a day than on Facebook or Instagram that often. Construct a weekly calendar your team can work from. Perhaps Mondays at 8:00 a.m., share a motivational quote across all your accounts. Or Wednesdays at noon share an article which relates to your mission. This serves as a “content calendar.” Once you have this to work from, coming up with ideas on what to consistently post becomes easier.

Audit your current social media presence.

Get started in writing down your social media strategy by auditing your current presence online. What does this mean? Audit means to examine and inspect. So, apply this to your social media presence by checking your stats and recording those details. For example, report what social media accounts your organization has. How many followers do you currently have? What is the average number of likes you receive on posts?

What other similar organizations exist, and how do they act on social media? These serve as important questions to ask and record the answers to, because once you know where your NPO starts, you will be able to establish more realistic goals for the future.

Choose your social media tools.

Next up, choose the best social media scheduling tools for your nonprofit organization. Perhaps you simply want to go into each account and post. This can definitely be an option, but can become tedious when you constantly have to remember to “go to Facebook at this time on this day to share this post.”

Instead, you can use online tools which link to your account and can schedule automatic posts in advance. Some of these include tools like Hootsuite, Buffer and Sprout Social. What’s fantastic about social media scheduling tools is they also allow you to track your analytics. No more guessing what works and what doesn’t. The data will tell you what’s up.

Assign your social media strategist.

Finally the last, but maybe most difficult, step: assigning the job to a team member or volunteer. If you put your social media strategy together, but do not have anyone to make sure it goes into effect, then your chances of it actually being successful are extremely low.

Be sure to assign one person or a team to the task of actually creating the social media content and scheduling it. This way, you can be confident your social media presence will be a consistent priority.

Social media marketing may seem like a daunting task for your nonprofit organization to accomplish, but with enough planning, your NPO will create a strong social media strategy guide to use in the implementation process. Try it out and watch your online presence strengthen and your cause expand.

Want to take your nonprofit organization’s social media to the next level? Firespring offers helpful materials and webinars on how your nonprofit can market itself to further its cause. Find out more by calling 877.447.8941 or email hello@firespring.com.