The majority of people in the world today are now active on social media and spend a significant amount of time there. As a result, smart charity organizations actively use social media to raise awareness and collect more funds for assistance. Charities create campaigns and spread them through social media platforms.
However, when it comes to choosing which social media platform is best for a charity or non-profit organization, it’s all about deciding on what the end goal or mission is. Another important consideration is the type of content that will be created and how it will be shared on each platform.
These are all important considerations and factors when trying to build a brand and following online. And one of the best ways to learn about what’s working for other foundations, is to research and follow them on all of the top social platforms.
With this in mind, today we are going to take a look at how several charity organizations are using social media to advance their cause.
Since its founding in London in 1961, Amnesty International has addressed some of the world’s most pressing social issues and protected the world’s most vulnerable people.
Amnesty International operates in various fields, including the campaign to stop the use of child soldiers, the fight against sex trafficking and sexual exploitation, the defense of human rights in war-torn nations, the effort to eliminate the death penalty, and many others.
Even though much of Amnesty International’s work is bleak and deals with the most heinous crimes against humanity, it expertly uses social media. Despite Amnesty International’s work’s shocking nature, the organization does not rely on shock-and-awe tactics to motivate people to act. Instead, it maintains highly active profiles across all major social media networks (Tumblr and Medium).
The Twitter profile of Amnesty International is particularly effective. Amnesty International, which has over 1.7 million followers on Twitter, uses it to raise awareness of ongoing campaigns and social issues.
When it comes to being a well-known charitable organization and gaining attention through social media platforms to educate individuals around the world, WE Charity has done an excellent job with this.
While many charitable organizations focus more on their local and off-line efforts, WE Charity has been able to amass quite the following online, with more than 2 million users on the Facebook Fan Page, and several hundred thousand more followers on Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.
No matter what social media platform you prefer to use, for charitable organizations, it’s key to make sure they are delivering high-quality content across all platforms.
If you take a moment to visit any of the WE Charity social profiles, you will see updates on their latest charitable activities, while also helping to educate others about their cause and helping those in need.
National Audubon Society
The National Audubon Society, named after renowned ornithologist John James Audubon, works tirelessly to protect the world’s birds. The National Audubon Society, founded in 1905, comprises nearly 500 local chapters across the United States, each of which is a separate 501(c)(3) nonprofit.
While several of the local chapters could serve as examples of how to use social media for good, we will concentrate on the social media presence of the National Audubon Society.
The National Audubon Society’s social media profiles are worthy of mention, but its Instagram profile stands out. With over 680,000 followers, the National Audubon Society’s Instagram feed is a visual feast for amateur and professional birdwatchers.
The photography featured on the Society’s Instagram feed is excellent, rivaling images found in prestigious publications such as National Geographic. The Audubon Society’s Twitter account has roughly half the followers of its Instagram account, but it knows how to use each platform’s strengths to significant effect.
About the fact that many of the Society’s tweets are followed by stunning photographs of birds in America, the Society takes a more hands-on approach on Twitter. They have several birdwatching tips, fun events such as constructing seasonal birdhouses for migratory birds, and opportunities to get involved in bird conservation and habitat preservation.
Beyond Coal is an initiative of the Sierra Club, one of America’s and the world’s oldest environmental groups, to support clean energies and, hopefully, eliminate our dependence on coal. The group partners alongside a sister movement in Europe to spread its appeal on both sides of the Atlantic.
Like all of the charities listed here, Beyond Coal employs digital tools such as infographics and maps in its social media efforts. This type of content is perfect for outlets such as Twitter because it helps people rapidly and accurately comprehend complicated regulatory concerns concerning fossil fuel use and imagine how heavy our dependence on fossil fuels is.
Human Rights Watch
The poorest and most marginalized people’s human rights are systematically violated worldwide, especially in developed countries. Human rights abuses abound in many parts of the world, from unlawful imprisonment and torture of inmates to the trafficking of women and girls into sexual slavery. That is why the non-profit Human Rights Watch’s role is so important.
HRW makes extensive use of social media in its various campaigns. With nearly 4 million Twitter followers, HRW provides fascinating and urgent insights into the world’s worst human rights violations. Domestic topics in the United States that generate little to no mass media attention, such as the disturbing frequency of child marriage in the United States, fall under this category.
HRW’s YouTube channel is also a great example of how video can simplify complex policy issues for a wider audience. HRW frequently uses animation and other methods to diversify its social content.
To Write Love on Her Arms
Despite the importance of mental health as a public health issue, few people are willing to openly discuss it due to social taboos and the widespread stigma associated with mental illness. Even fewer people are willing to discuss, let alone acknowledge, self-harm.
To Write Love on Her Arms, based in Florida, works to connect depressed individuals with mental health providers who can help. TWLOHA is very active on various social media platforms. The organization has a small Twitter following but a much larger audience on Instagram and Pinterest.
Most of TWLOHA’s media content focuses on real-life experiences of people who have suffered with and conquered self-harm, as well as inspirational words for the millions of people who continue to deal with mental health problems.
Sharing these stories on their social media is about more than just raising awareness of a vital social and public health problem. It is a way to tell people who are suffering from mental illness or self-harm that they are others like them, hope, and reach out to people who understand. It could be the difference between life and death for certain people, demonstrating social media’s value for charities.
In a Nutshell
Charities face unique challenges, particularly when it comes to social media. The examples above should have given you insights about spreading the word about your organization’s work and get more people excited about making a difference right from where they are.
If you’d like to see more examples of charitable organizations that are using the power of the internet and social media to grow their reach, start searching through your preferred social platform and using hashtags related to donations, volunteer work, and charities.