Nonprofit Digital Communications

last person joined: 18 hours ago 

For those doing digital strategy work, including written or multimedia content for nonprofit websites, social media, and e-newsletters. This group is for those digital communications folks who create written or multimedia content for websites, social media, and e-newsletters for nonprofits. Members will discuss topics such as social media trends, digital analytics, developing content, storytelling, planning and resources, content strategy, and more.


  • 1.  Introduction

    Posted Jun 21, 2018 14:55
    Hello from ATL,

    I'm excited to join this group.  I came to NTEN as a 2017-2018 Digital Inclusion Fellow.  The Fellowship directly connected me with my current position with Atlanta Public Schools doing adult education and creating and growing an online presence for the adult education program.  I hope to learn many new things to help us grow our recruitment and keep our students engaged.

    I'm very new to social media and will be spending lots of time reading the past discussions.

    Two questions for today

    Where can I go to read the demographics on helping us decide if we should add Instagram or stick with Facebook and Twitter?

    How do you come up with content?  There are days I just don't have anything to post and I know I need to post daily.

    Thank you so much

    Necole Durham
    Atlanta Public Schools

  • 2.  RE: Introduction

    Posted Jun 22, 2018 08:17
    Hi Necole!  I'll offer a brief thought on your 2nd question:
    How do you come up with content?  There are days I just don't have anything to post and I know I need to post daily.
    Necole Durham,  Jun 21, 2018 14:55
    One idea when you're really out of them, is to take an article you find elsewhere, and "translate" it for your audience.  So if you're working in adult education, maybe there's a proposed change to state tax laws that would affect deductions of education expenses.  The changes might be explained in a 2,000 word article on a local news website, but only one section talks about how education programs are affected.  You can summarize the changes and put them in a context that's relevant to your audience, then link to and credit the source.

    Or maybe you come across an organization announcing annual awards, and there's one for recognizing outstanding educators. You can encourage your readers to nominate someone, again linking them to the source.

    If you keep a list of quality, relevant sites and browse them every few days, you'll probably come up with great stuff you can point your audience to that they would otherwise miss.

    Hope that helps!

    Nathan Gasser
    President & Executive Chef
    Report Kitchen
    A more delicious way to publish your
    project, policy, and research reports.

  • 3.  RE: Introduction

    Posted Jun 22, 2018 11:49
    Hi Necole,

    I'm not sure about the demographics, but for Instagram you need good photographs or graphics to do well on that network. So even if the demographics are what you're looking for, make sure you have the capacity to create those graphics before jumping in.

    For Facebook and Twitter, most of the content we share isn't ours. It's good practice (and makes consistent posting much easier) to share others' posts/tweets, news stories that your followers might be interested in, etc. I can't remember what the recommended ratio of own content to shared is, but I doubt anyone is counting anyway. I have a google news alert set up and get some stories that way (also a good way to see LTE, op-ed, or blog response opportunities, if you're into that). I also have a Twitter list and will often retweet them or compose my own tweets based on news someone else shared (but their messaging wasn't inline with ours enough to just retweet).

    You might also want to investigate whether daily posting on Facebook is the best strategy for your page. It is always changing, but I've found higher engagement (on average and overall) with a 3-4 posting per week schedule on one of the pages I manage. I came to that by looking at some suggestions for best practices and running occasional tests with a different schedule to see how that affects our engagement.

    This website has a load of information on social media for nonprofits.

    Melissa Amarello
    Advocates for Snake Preservation
    Silver City, New Mexico

  • 4.  RE: Introduction

    Posted Jun 22, 2018 14:18
    Thanks guys.  These are excellent ideas.

    Necole Durham
    Atlanta Public Schools

  • 5.  RE: Introduction

    Posted Jun 22, 2018 18:40
    Welcome Necole!
    One thing I'd make a rule: don't post unless it is relevant to your followers. No one wants to read that post that you only posted because you had to write something! So ask your followers a question (and be ready to respond) or ask them what they want to hear about.  That will give you a list of things to use in future posts.
    You can also follow and re-post relevant posts from other orgs.

    Dale Anania
    Direct Response Officer
    The Marine Mammal Center
    Sausalito, CA
    pronouns: she/her/hers

  • 6.  RE: Introduction

    Posted Jun 24, 2018 15:30
    Hi, Necole! A hearty Yes to Dale's suggestion on posting questions. Open-ended questions (that can't be answered with a simple Yes or No) invite engagement and user-generated content.

    I also second Melissa and Nathan on sharing content from others. Some organizations use an 80-20 rule: 80% content from others and only 20% of your own content, although the proportions are up to you. This is a great way to share content on related themes or highlight relevant posts of volunteers, donors, or partners. When you share others' content they are more likely to share yours.

    Daily posts are not a requirement. Experiment with frequency and timing (days of the week and times of day) to see what your audience responds to. Then focus on posting when your audience is there and with a frequency that is MANAGEABLE FOR YOU (I cannot emphasize that last bit enough!). On Twitter, you can repeat (not retweet) the same post a couple of times on different days or at other times to reach additional audience.


    BJ Wishinsky
    Mountain View, CA