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3 Social Media Strategies to Improve Donor Stewardship


By Elizabeth Pun

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Reading Time: 3 minutes

As a nonprofit marketer, you know that social media is a key component to reaching and engaging your donors. It’s an important tool that can help your organization get involved in their daily conversations. Each positive and unique interaction you have with your donors can leave them feeling more connected to your organization.

In other words, your nonprofit’s activity on social media is key to deepening relationships with those in your fundraising community. Here are three ways that you can improve your donor stewardship strategy through social media.

1. Be Quick to Respond

People want speedy responses, period. According to one study, 83 percent of Twitter users and 71 percent of Facebook users expect a brand to respond to posting on the same day. Twitter users, especially, want immediate replies. More than 50 percent of Twitter users expect a brand to respond within two hours.

In fact, speed is so important to social media users that it can affect whether they’ll recommend your organization to others. The same study shows that more users will recommend a brand that gives a quick but ineffective response, over a brand that gives an effective but slow response.

The bottom line is that your nonprofit can’t afford to be slow in replying to supporters. Show them that you’re listening by responding to their posts within a few hours. Even if you don’t have a solid answer to their question, it’s better to reach out immediately and say, “I don’t know, let me find out for you” than to wait too long to say anything.

This means you need to keep a pulse on your social channels so you know when, where, and how to step in. Social media monitoring tools like Google Alerts and Mention can help you keep your ear to the ground and respond to supporters in a timely fashion.

2. Call Them Out

A huge part of successful donor stewardship is making your supporters feel special. It can be easy to feel like just another donor in the crowd, so it’s up to your organization to make supporters feel like they’re individually seen and valued. Calling them out and thanking them on a public social platform is a prime way to do that.

Consider designing your shout-outs depending on donors’ level and type of support. For example, you may have different ways to call out recurring donors and peer-to-peer fundraisers.

To celebrate their monthly donors, Watsi prepared a tweet for donors to use immediately after signing up for their recurring giving program. By calling out each member’s individual number, the organization recognized the value of each new donor. Then, Watsi retweeted these messages, showering their newest monthly donors with more public recognition.

Your peer-to-peer fundraisers, on the other hand, might receive recognition based on how much money they raise. Consider congratulating and thanking those who raise a certain amount. “Wow Brad, thanks for raising $300!” “Congrats for raising $800, Jean! Keep going!” By showing your fundraisers some love this way, you prove you’re paying attention to their hard work, which can motivate them to keep it up.

3. Broadcast and Support Their Efforts

While verbally thanking your supporters is a great idea, another way to show your appreciation is to help them spread the word about their own efforts. Your fundraisers, for instance, are (hopefully) promoting their personal fundraising pages on their own social networks. Share these posts to your organization’s own feed, and you’ll demonstrate that you are your supporters’ biggest cheerleader.

In this example, Liberty in North Korea retweets a fundraiser’s post and reels in extra eyeballs onto her personal fundraising campaign. Try tracking these types of posts through your campaign hashtag. Promoting a fundraiser’s page not only brings them extra support, but it also showcases to the rest of your followers that there is a community backing your cause.

As small as a like, retweet, or comment might seem these details play an important role in the ongoing conversation with your supporters. Your timely responsiveness and personalized shout-outs are important to your donor stewardship strategy. Keep these up to prove you’re listening and paying attention to their involvement in your community.

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