Social media marketing for nonprofits can be vastly different than for commercial businesses. Nonprofits embark on social media campaigns to increase awareness of their cause, encourage the involvement of volunteers, and raise funds and donations.

Nonprofits often have a special challenge in that they are required to do more with less – fewer people, fewer resources, and less budget. For that reason it’s important that the content you share be impactful and that it resonates with your followers.

Below are four post types your nonprofit can share on social media and how to create them:

#1 Create Short Form Video for Social Media that Shares Your Nonprofit’s Experience

It is important to be specific when you share your story. Instead of saying that your organization has helped 5,000 people, explain how it helped one specific person and go into detail. For example, a literacy nonprofit could explain how it helped 10-year-old Joshua, who was unable to read and now feels proud because he just finished reading a Harry Potter book. Short-form video is a wonderful way to share your story.

How to Create This Social Media Post

It’s true that creating a long, elaborate video can be a huge, expensive undertaking. But these days there are several easy-to-use tools that have video templates. All you need to do is select the template, edit and copy to tell your story, and share. Three tools you can use for this are Adobe Spark, Animoto, and WaveVideo.  Each one of these tools has stock video clips, or you can upload your own. All three of these video tools offer a free or low-cost subscription so you can try them out.

#2 Spotlight a Volunteer or Team Member and Share an Event Through Their Perspective

Do you have an organization fueled by volunteers? Recognize them on social media, take photos of them in action and get a quote from them about their volunteer experience. Even if you don’t have a quote, you can still graciously appreciate them while sharing information with your social media followers. For example, your post could read, “People like Stephanie fed over 200 homeless families during our city’s first snowfall.”

How to Create This Social Media Post

One way you could accomplish this is to work with a specific volunteer to get “live” updates from their volunteer work. With a little planning, you can partner with your volunteer to get photos of their experience, and maybe even a video testimonial. This gives your followers a behind-to-scenes look at the impact your organization makes in the community. All your volunteer needs is a cell phone to record quick videos of her experience while volunteering. These can be shared across any of your social media channels. If your volunteer is especially comfortable with social media, they could also record straight to a Facebook Live or Instagram broadcast.

#3 Share the History of Your Nonprofit With a #TBT (#ThrowbackThursday) Social Media Post

Everyone loves to hear how something amazing grew from humble beginnings. Create a series of posts that recall the simple start-up story of your nonprofit organization. Was there one event that triggered the idea for your organization? Did a small group of people work together to get it off the ground? Share these facts through photos.

How to Create This Social Media Post

Ideally, you would have a collection of photos to share, but you can still do this with stock photos or images you take of similar objects. Did your founders meet over coffee every day for three months to plan your mission statement 10 years ago? Then share that with a photo of a few cups of coffee on a table. Focus on communicating the feeling, excitement, or inspiration behind the story.

#4 Inspire Your Audience with Testimonials or Quotation Images that Share Your Nonprofit’s Values

One of the strengths of nonprofit organizations is they are clear about their mission, values, and purpose. This is a huge benefit in social media marketing where people tend to skim their newsfeed for posts that are meaningful to them. Overlay emotion-triggering photos with powerful quotes that communicate your organization’s values.

How to Create This Social Media Post

Creativity is a must when creating these posts. Brainstorm not only on who your nonprofit benefits, and how they can help, but also what is the feeling or emotion around your cause? Does your organization help people feel pride? Security? Connection? Hope? These are all strong experiences that can be shared through imagery and words.  There are plenty of stock photo sites such as DepositPhotos, Pixabay, or Pexels, but it’s more impactful to use images from your organization’s image library if you have them. For quotes, you can look to volunteers, leaders in your organization, people who have benefited from your organization’s outreach, or even inspirational quotes from historical leaders. To combine the images and quotes you can use a simple tool like Canva. In fact, Canva has a program that offers its paid subscription to nonprofit organizations called Canva for Nonprofits.

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