How To Create A Social Content Calendar
Some of the best social media success stories for charities weren’t planned – things like the unprecedented number of donations for the #NoMakeUpSelfie or the timely response to #TheDress by the Salvation Army in South Africa were all due to excellent social listening and speedy content creation.
You can’t schedule social media engagement like this in advance, but you can schedule promotion ahead of time, especially with your Lightful campaign dashboard and scheduling tools. Having a content calendar will make sure your social media activity is as efficient and as effective as it can be – the most successful organisations share this responsibility across teams.
The Rule of Thirds
Success on social media really comes down to finding the right balance between self-promotion, engagement, and listening. Self-promotion refers to telling your supporters about your latest events, campaigns and activities, while engagement refers to the time you take to respond to your followers and engage with them directly. Listening (taking part in other conversations relevant to your area of expertise) and engagement are harder to systematise, but creating exciting content to promote the work of your organisation is something you can plan for.
1) Content Repository
Save time and avoid duplicating efforts by setting up monthly folders with any images you’ve created. Using shared folders like Dropbox, Google Drive, or our Lightful media library in conjunction with a calendar will help keep you organised.
2) Align charity goals with social media goals
Painting a holistic view of your entire organisation online is a team effort, and not just the responsibility of your comms officer or intern. Take the time to get different departments to sit together and map out what the next few months look like for them – where are they going? What are they working on? How can you plan in advance to get them to tweet from the field? Be proactive, rather than reactive, and plan content creation ahead of time.
According to Social CEOs, 8 out of 10 people say they’re likely to trust an organisation whose CEO and Team use social media, so being able to plan ahead to engage your Chief Executive or Board of Trustees is key – they’re busy people!
3) Advanced Planning
Holidays, seasonal events, recurring annual campaigns – they can sneak up on you.
Sites like Awareness Days are great to add to your calendar so you can work up some messages ahead of time, like Marie Curie and The Royal British Legion have for Volunteer’s Week. Make sure you only participate in conversations that are relevant to your organisation – don’t wade into a conversation just for the sake of it.
Being organised, a little bit of forward planning and putting systems in place across teams can do wonders in terms of freeing up your time – making sure you have enough capacity to jump on the bandwagon for the next big thing.
Erin Niimi Longhurst
The Lightful team shares their reflections and hopes this International Women’s Day (IWD).
At Lightful, we believe that trust is a key foundation for our economy and society. Building Trust is at the heart of what we do at Lightful. Our three Co-Founders, Carlos Miranda, Vinay Nair, and Johnny Murnane, all arrived at this conclusion through quite different journeys. They had various backgrounds in impact investing, tech and consulting with the charity sector. They would work with incredible nonprofits, but when they engaged with them online, their websites and social media presence didn’t do justice to the power and impact of their organisation. If you visit a website with out of date information, or broken links etc, you are not filled with confidence that the organisation is trustworthy. You wouldn’t buy from a retailer with a website like that - so why would you donate money or promote the cause? It makes it feel a bit unreliable, and so lending your support or funds could be risky. This creates a real problem for nonprofits, limiting their reach and ability to raise unrestricted funds from everyday donors and others. They set up Lightful to tackle this key problem of building trust.
January is the time when we’re gearing up for getting organised in 2020! It’s the perfect time now to take stock and start planning for the next 12 months. Luckily, we’ve got eight ways you can improve your social media content calendar to supercharge your content in 2020.
Yesterday saw the fourth annual Giving Tuesday in the UK and once again, it trended on Twitter all day. No doubt CAF, who runs Giving Tuesday in the UK, will release some stats of how much was raised in due course but for now, let’s take a look at how charities got involved.
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