There’s been an abundance of negative press, blogs, tweets, status updates and conversations surrounding facebook as of late. I don’t disagree with most of what’s been said – like the rest of you I’m no fan of their labyrinthine process to control personal privacy settings and am more than a little perturbed that my entire “info” section all but disappeared just because I didn’t want to link every last interest to some website somewhere.
That being said, when I logged onto facebook this morning something happened that made me want to express my undying love for what a fantastic tool it can be for non-profits. I’ve written before about why I love social media for non-profits – not only does Big Love Little Hearts communicate and engage with our donors and beneficiaries via social media we are also able to get a great deal of our mission accomplished through social media. We have found surgeons and hospitals to help children who need their heart repaired in developing countries in a matter of minutes on facebook and twitter as opposed to the weeks it would take offline.
Recently the families who need our help have sent their requests through facebook and those who have profiles have friended me personally and often post expressions of thanks on my wall or leave updates about their children on my (and Big Love Little Hearts) wall. I love that facebook lends a platform for that kind of public interaction…as many of our donors are facebook friends of mine they get to hear how the work we do is affecting lives straight from the people we’re helping.
This morning that was taken to a whole new level. Yesterday one of our donors made a post on her wall that she tagged me and Big Love Little Hearts in. It read:
Estrella Rosenberg those tickets sold out in like 20 minutes!!!! What a great thing you’re doing with Big Love Little Hearts …inspiring!! Can’t wait to see u at the game:) 🙂 🙂 🙂
Because I was tagged in the post it showed up on my wall where anyone I’m friends with could see it, view the post on her wall and comment on it on her wall. The father of a little boy we’re helping in the Philippines did exactly that – he commented directly on our donors page, sending “appreciation and love” from the Philippines. Without any intervention on our part, facebook created a direct connection between someone we help and someone who funds our mission.
I couldn’t pay for better donor engagement than that…I couldn’t plan better donor engagement than that! The great thing is that I didn’t have to. For all it’s hiccups, facebook offers an unparalleled platform to communicate with your donors and your beneficiaries. I love facebook and if you’re a non-profit you should too.
Go show your facebook fan page some love today…it’s not just a megaphone for announcements about your next event or all the great work you’re doing. It is a free tool that can be crafted to foster an environment of communication and collaboration between you and your donors, the people you seek to help and the other organizations you work with. Done well it also allows for communication between each of those segments. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Build Community. Build Change.