5 LinkedIn Tips for Nonprofit Fundraising ProfessionalsBusiness in Toronto / Ontario, Fundraising, Fundraising Services, Lottery fundraising, News, Non-profit fundraising, Online Fundraising, Philanthropy, Telephone Fundraising, Toronto News | Desi Cabrera | June 7, 2012 at 12:01 am
I have made a concerted effort to learn the many ways nonprofit fundraising can benefit from the ever-changing world of social media. I have previously written pieces exploring how fundraising professionals can better utilize all that Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest offer and today I’m adding Linkedin to this list. I recently attended Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Greater Toronto Chapter Fundraising Day and had the pleasure of attending the LinkedIn for Fundraisers session. I wasn’t as comfortable with LinkedIn but that changed by the end of the session and I now have a better understanding of the many benefits LinkedIn offers to those working within the professional fundraising sector.
Presented by Clare McDowall, Communications Director for Small Change Fund and co-presenter Paul Nazareth, Manager of Philanthropic Advisory Services for Scotia Private Client Group, they gave an informative and fun filled presentation that made this growing social media platform no longer intimidating. Referred to as ‘The Little Black Book’ by Paul, the following are just a few of the many tips they gave to help increase LinkedIn success:
- Complete Your Profile. Completing your profile and keeping it up to date will help increase your visibility in the LinkedIn community. The completeness of your profile also affects your ranking in searches; those that are most complete get priority. The summary section is the most important and should consist of a good pitch about yourself, who you are and what you do. As your profile is essentially your online resume, you have to be sure that it gives the reader enough information about you, but without overdoing it. Often too much information is added in the experience section, you want to be sure to include all relevant information, but be concise.
- Personalized Invitations. LinkedIn is all about online connections and networking. The best place to start is with sending invitation to people you have worked with, done business with and people you may know. Ultimately, success on this network is based on the quality connections you make. When sending invitations it’s critical that a personalized message is composed and sent instead of the standard LinkedIn default. Personalized messages will increase the number of accepted connections.
- Get Recommendations. Often overlooked, the ‘Recommendations’ section is a great opportunity to display testimonials from people you have worked with. Having three to five on your profile will give the reader a clearer picture on why to connect with or do business with you. A great way to receive recommendations is by writing a few yourself for other LinkedIn connections. The best recommendations are short and to the point and should only be a few sentences.
- Groups Are Important. One of the many benefits of LinkedIn is connecting with others that are within the same industry and/or share the same interests. Joining groups is a great way to connect with peers and share information. Searching for groups by keywords will help identify groups related to your cause or mission. Active participation in discussions and responding to postings is a sure way to expand your LinkedIn network.
- Don’t Spam. Sharing relevant and timely information on LinkedIn is important and a key aspect of success on the platform. From original to existing content, LinkedIn is an excellent forum to exchange ideas, strategies and information with those that share the same interests, but it’s also very important not to spam or make a majority of your posts self-promoting. Before posting be sure to read the ‘Group Rules’ to make certain that your postings and the information you are sharing are within the parameters of the group’s vision.
Securing gifts and donations is not the ultimate goal on LinkedIn. Instead establishing who you are and what you do and having a networking plan will help improve long term success on LinkedIn. A minimum of 10-20 minutes a week is recommended to start the ball rolling, but like all other social networking platforms you get what you put into it. This digital little black book can be very powerful and used for more than representing your cause or nonprofit, it can also be used as a tool for career and professional development. I will delve deeper on this and other social networking platforms over the summer in our Social Medial Summer series so stay tuned.
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Miratel Solutions is a Toronto call centre, eBusiness, and letter shop mail house specializing in professional fundraising services including telephone fundraising, online fundraising, lottery services, donation caging, donation processing and other donor management services. We are committed to our CSR business values in all contact centre services and mail house operations and advancing the missions of the nonprofits we proudly serve.