How Nonprofits Use Social Media to Promote Matching Gifts

In a previous post, I discussed how to leverage social media to tap into corporate giving programs. Now it’s time to take your seats, dim the lights, and show you matching gift social media promotion in action.

There are more social media networks than ingredients in a can of soda, so, in order to avoid information overload, we’ll focus on the two big players: Facebook and Twitter. If your donors are online and engaged with social media then they’re likely using at least one of these networks.

Their engagement provides you with the opportunity to easily promote your corporate giving.

So sit back, relax, and enjoy as we parse through some notable matching gift posts on social media.

Facebook

With over a billion users, Facebook is far and away the most popular social media network. This means that many of your donors follow you on Facebook, which allows you the chance to inform them about matching gifts.

FACEBOOK EXAMPLE 1: The National Kidney Foundation

The National Kidney Foundation demonstrates an effective matching gift Facebook post:

There are a lot of good things about this post, so let’s begin with the graphic. The image grabs donors’ attentions as they’re scrolling through their newsfeed, and it’s both easy-to-read and informative. The graphic appears in so many people’s newsfeeds because of its virality: 297 people liked this post, 6 commented, and 132 people shared it, all within six hours of being posted. The key to an effective Facebook post is engagement, and the National Kidney Foundation created a type of content that their followers want to talk about.

matching-gifts-facebook-national-kidney-foundation

Above the image, the National Kidney Foundation provides a call to action. Donors can click the link and be taken to the National Kidney Foundation’s dedicated matching gift page where donors can discover if their employers offer matching gifts.

Not only is the National Kidney Foundation making matching gifts easy for its donors, but they’re bringing people to their website, where, after looking up matching gift information, people might poke around and decide to get more involved with the organization in some way.

FACEBOOK EXAMPLE 2: The ALS Association

The ALS Association shows another type of graphic that can be used in a matching gift Facebook post:
matching-gift-facebook-als

The beauty of this post, as with the National Kidney foundation post, is that it has one call to action. There’s no appeal for end of year donations or some other action in addition to matching gifts. The only thing the ALS wants on the reader’s mind is matching gifts, which raises the likelihood that the reader will take the desired action.

In addition to focusing the donor on one topic, the post explains how matching gifts help the organization. When you can show donors how easy it is for their donations to do more, the likelihood that they take the time to submit a matching gift request increases.

Furthermore, fundraising appeal response rates increase by 71% when matching gifts are mentioned, and the donations made from those appeals increase by 51%, and that’s before the receipt of matching gift funds. While only donors can provide matching gifts, it won’t hurt when your non-donor followers see your matching gift posts, too.

Most of the best Facebook posts use effective text and an image, such as the Charcot-Marie-Tooth Association does:

matching-gifts-facebook-social-media-cmta

Who wouldn’t allow a delicious ice cream cone to snag their attention? The treat here is an interesting fact about matching gifts, which lets donors know how their money can go farther.

Above the image, the CMTA provides a call to action and provides a note about how matching gifts allow the organization to do more. Emotional appeals can convince donors that it’s worth their while to take five minutes to submit matching gift materials. Knowing that a doubled donation can help an organization to do twice as much may be just what a donor needs to realize that giving more, not ice cream, is what will satisfy his appetite for good.

Twitter

While Twitter demands shorter posts, that doesn’t mean you have to say less than you otherwise would. The beauty of Twitter is that it keeps posts short and sweet, so you have to stay focused and provide a compelling call to action.

TWITTER EXAMPLE 1: The Center for Puppetry Arts

The Center for Puppetry Arts shows how a no nonsense approach could be just what you want on Twitter:

matching-gifts-twitters-puppetry-arts

 

The tweet is a simple, encouraging call to action. There are no hashtags or tagged Twitter handles or anything that might distract from the message. If you read this tweet then you’re asked to think about matching gifts and nothing else.

A tweet like this might be just what your Twitter-engaged, tech savvy users need to check if their companies offer matching gifts, so they can quickly submit the paperwork that allows their money to do more. Although, some donors might require more information than just knowing that their companies double donations.

TWITTER EXAMPLE 2: Cure HHT

Cure HHT demonstrates how sharing useful information can promote matching gifts:

matching-gift-tweet-cure-hht

The link promises a list of more than 200 companies that offer matching gift programs in an effort to raise awareness among donors:

matching-gift-list-page-cure-hht

The list is hosted on Cure HHT’s website, which brings donors into their little internet world. Once donors are on the site, they’ll likely think about making a donation or submitting a matching gift request. If the latter then they can check out the list to see if their employer offers such a program.

Other information to share on a matching gift page includes:

  • Matching gift statistics
  • How matching gifts benefit your organization
  • Links to company-specific corporate giving guidelines and donation portals

Sharing educational information is a great way to reel in donors and maximize the long-term value of a donor. People love to learn, and when you make it easy for donors to learn how their dollars can do more, you’re paving the path to increased fundraising success.

TWITTER EXAMPLE 3: CASA Pikes Peak

The Pikes Peak chapter of CASA attaches their matching gift ask to a specific event in order to encourage donations:

twitter-casa-matching-gifts

Many matching gift eligible donors will procrastinate for one reason or another, and promoting matching gifts along with an event might be the spur to action that donors need. If donors plan to attend the event then they may view the occasion as a good time to finally log into their companies’ online portals and submit those matching gift requests. When donors click the link they’re taken to CASA Pike Peak’s dedicated matching gift page which includes Double the Donation’s searchable database of matching gift companies, forms, and guidelines.

Promoting the event may also attract the attention of non-donors, who may decide that this is a good time to make a donation. If they do decide to donate at this time then they’ll choose to do so while being informed of matching gifts, which makes it much more likely that they’ll seek to take advantage of corporate giving programs.

Social media is a great way for nonprofits to connect with donors and build relationships with new people. Facebook and Twitter are not fundraising tools, but they can be used to share news about matching gifts and increase the amount of matching gifts you receive.

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John Haydon