Five tips for building a credible campaign voice in social media

Social media is a way of giving your organisation a genuine voice and persona. But it also connects your campaigns with individuals and communities that could support you directly.

To make the most of it, identify goals, locate communities, speak with authenticity, use your existing network and think of it as a conversation, not just broadcasting.

Here are my five tips

1. Set clear social media goals

By setting clear goals you can identify who your target audience is. Why might they be interested in your issue? What motivates them to be social about your campaign? What will inspire them to take action?

2. Find where social communities gather

Finding where relevant social communities convene online and following them is an important way to stay in touch and remain relevant. Look beyond Twitter and Facebook because social communities exist across social networking sites and forums.

3. Use authentic voices supported by a social media policy

It is important to be genuine on social media. Having a clear social media policy can guide people from across your organisation to speak and comment with their own voice whilst keeping on message with your campaigns and brand.

4. Encourage social media interactions across your organisation

Your campaign messages and charity brand can be amplified by involving people from across your organisation in social media interactions. Paul Farmer, CEO of Mind is regularly on Twitter. But also involving people across service delivery, campaigns, fundraising, marketing, research and other departments can enable you to keep pace with communities, be more agile and respond to conversations.​

More than just cat pictures?

Leading community managers demystify social media strategy in the Evolve 2015 practical workshop P7 Building communities: how to get the most from your supporters.

Find out more about Evolve 2015

5. Listen and engage

People on social media don’t like to be ignored. Listen to conversations, understand the issues and respond to them. And sustain this engagement. It is harder to grow your network and presence online if you only engage sporadically. But perhaps more importantly, occasional interaction may give the impression that you simply don’t really care.

Want to find out more?

@SarGilbert runs NCVO’s Certificate in Campaigning, including a module on digital campaigning with Duane Raymond (@Fairsay). Applications are open for March 2015.

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Avatar photo Sarah Gilbert is an experienced campaigner. She is an independent consultant and runs projects for NCVO on campaigning and influencing, including the Certificate in Campaigning and Leadership in Campaigns. She also coaches campaigners, has guest lectured for Roehampton University, and is a member of the advisory board for the University of Westminster's MA in Campaigning, Communications and Media. Sarah sits on the Campaigning Effectiveness Advisory Board and writes blogs, articles and tweets about how to influence people and the sector’s role in campaigning.

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