The Biggest Facebook Mistake Most Nonprofits Make

The biggest mistake nonprofits make with Facebook is thinking Facebook is about them, not their community.

Why it’s not about you

Whether it’s on Twitter, in the newspaper or on Facebook, your nonprofit’s voice should always come second to the voice of your supporters (or the voice of the cause). This is particularly the case with Facebook, where friends always (100% of the time) come first.

What’s your priority on Facebook?

Think about your personal use of Facebook for a moment. Now ask yourself this question:

When was the last time you opened up Facebook to:

  • Make a purchase or a donation?
  • Find out the latest news from a brand?
  • Connect with your friends?

If you’re like most people, you’ve never done #1 or #2, & you always do #3. So Facebook is about friends connecting with friends (as shown below in this graph from the Atlantic).


For nonprofits, Facebook is 100% about friends connecting with friends. The difference is that those friendships are in your donor database.

He is not YOUR fan. You are his nonprofit.

Your real mission (if you wish to accept it) is to get your supporters talking about the cause, instead of you bragging about your nonprofit.

Facebook marketing is ultimately about giving your supporters ways to impress their friends. It’s not at all about you.

John Haydon