As we head deep into the holiday period you’re likely to be taking a short departure from your usual social media efforts for nonprofit fundraising. After all the traffic to your site and contact points is most likely going to dip quite a lot over the next week or two won’t it? Well, yes it will, but don’t worry that’s entirely normal for almost all websites between December 20th and January 3rd but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing to be moving on with during this time of year if you’re still working, or even if you’re not.
Your regular readers will not be online quite as often as usual as they catch up with family and friends, travel or enjoy their new gifts but it doesn’t mean that your website, blog or social media campaign has to gather dust waiting for the return of everyone. Planning ahead can allow you to keep the ‘lights on’ to your network even if no-one is at home and these ideas will bring dividends during the holiday spell and directly afterwards.
Dust down your social media strategy notes and take a look at what has worked well in 2013 and what hasn’t. Take some time to decide what some realistic goals for 2014 ought to be in terms of growing your donor audience and also improving engagement with them. The holidays might not be the time to determine all of the solutions but year-end is a great chance to review what worked this year and where you’re going next. Try and select at least one social media avenue where you want to grow your audience by a targeted amount of perhaps fifty percent and build a plan to accomplish it.
Gather the ‘big picture’ ideas for the beginning of 2014, take the time to see which blog posts and social media interactions have created the most buzz, determine if keyword activity drove the interest, a giant social media spike or perhaps an unexpected referral. Filter this information into category based action items where you can build on great social media networking tactics along with keyword buzz. Keyword activity can often be overlooked, sometimes we’ll find ourselves relying on what worked six months or even a year ago but our audience has now morphed into something very new and exciting when it comes to keywords, so remain current. These are opportunities to build your audience so react in real-time, this time of year is ideal to take stock of the myriad of data provided via Google Analytics and Google Webmasters for example.
Survey and poll your audience. The year-end is the perfect time to take stock of what your readers think of what you’re doing and finding out what they might like to see in the future. There are so many great survey apps and plugins that you can add to your blog or Facebook business page that it would be a shame not to use them. Moreover readers are often looking for something a little lighter to read at the end of the year as they are winding down too, surveys can take care of that in an effective and useful way. You can also write a brilliant blog post if you have an interactive audience by asking what was their most memorable (related to your site of course!) moment of the year and/or what do they hope to achieve in 2014.
Email never sleeps, so it’s a fantastic time to use it. During the holidays email use actually increases, while people are less likely polite to breakaway from family and friends to maintain their normal web browsing habits they still check email so again it’s a worthy avenue to use at this time of year. The holidays provide a great chance to send out a newsletter, provide your audience with a preview of 2014 or share some great results from 2013. In terms of an engaged donor audience, what better time could there be to say thank you and share some success with your readers?
I really hope that you’ll be able to use some of these holiday tips during this quiet time to get 2014 off to the best possible start, if you have other ideas or any questions please share them below in the comments. _________________________________________________________________________________