The Social Observer

The Social Media Marketing Blog by SNHU Students

NPO’s Guide to Social Media Content Planning

Part 1

Let’s start at the very beginning…

One of the most vital things any new social media marketer can learn is how to create an excellent content calendar. Nonprofit organizations are no exception! Our first blog covers Steps 1-3 and helps you prepare to create your own sustainable social media content planner. In Part 2, we will cover Steps 4-7, which will help you fill in your planner, schedule posts, and monitor results. We can’t wait to see the results of your NPO social media content planning!

Your social media content planning calendar can be the difference between realizing you haven’t posted for the day yet and scrambling around trying to find content and checking out how your post for the day is performing via Facebook Insights. Small businesses and non-profit organizations have a lot in common; the budget is often a constraint, and employees do not have the time or training to manage social media accounts properly.

Learning how to create your own social media calendar is a game-changer for social media marketers, including NPO’s!

Grab a cup of fair-trade coffee, a notebook, and let’s get started!

Goals: A very good place to start

My first social media job was a freelance position helping a local small business start its channels. I had a big job ahead of me and wasn’t quite sure where to start. I knew that we needed to create goals that would help create a social community and bring in business.

Step 1: Create SMART goals

Would you hold a fundraiser without a goal or purpose?

One of the biggest mistakes social media marketers make early on is not aligning social media goals with company goals.

Start by asking yourself some questions about your NPO. What problems do you need to solve? What are the major milestones you want to achieve?

If one if your goals are to goals, 300 followers, you need to dig deeper. Why do you want 300 more followers? Another great question to consider is how will your new followers further your organization’s mission?

SMART goals are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely. Take sufficient time to discuss how social media can help you raise awareness of your charity. Take a look at our guide on creating SMART goals if you want a more in-depth look.

Step 2: Develop Themes

After you have established SMART goals and platform choices for your organization, it’s time to plan out your content. Content planning allows NPO’s to understand how posts will line up with real-time events and ensure a clear understanding of tasks that need to be accomplished for campaigns. 

Once I had developed goals for my client, my next task was to sort through content and develop posts. This task seemed daunting. I didn’t know what direction to take and my first round of posts could be described as “a little bit of this and a little bit of that”. What I was missing was a common theme for content. I decided to come up with three themes to start.

Some example themes for nonprofit organizations could include

  • Local Impact- highlight how your work is making a difference locally
  • History of your NPO- how did your organization start? What inspired you?
  • Random Acts of Kindness- ask users and employees to contribute photos, videos, or stories
  • Global Impact- highlight what your work does on a global scale

Step 3: Creation Inspiration

Creating content for your NPO on social media can feel tricky and overwhelming; the good news is you most likely already have incredible content on your website that can be used for social media. Do you have a popular blog post? Sharing the blog on your social channels can increase traffic to your website, start a dialogue with followers, and establish your NPO as an authority on a topic.

Check out our favorite content ideas and decide what types of posts will work best with your organization.

  • Videos
  • Memes and Gifs
  • Blogs
  • 3rd Party Content
  • Educational Content
  • Behind the scenes pictures
  • User-generated Content
  • Throwback photos/Recycled content
  • Polls
  • How-To Guides and Tutorials

Some of the content ideas may seem familiar (videos, memes/gifs), other types of content may not be as obvious.

3rd party content refers to content outside of what you create in-house. Examples can include news articles, retweets, YouTube videos, etc. 

Throwback photos and recycled content refer to content you have already posted. This type of content can be revamped and reused to reach new consumers, just make sure to change the look and wording of your post!

Behind the scene, photos were a big hit with the salon’s audience. Followers loved seeing pictures of the technicians getting excited about a new shipment of colors or painting the owner’s granddaughters’ nails. What types of posts will you create for your NPO social media content planning?

Take a break and get ready for Part 2

If you are already on social media, now is an excellent time to look at your insights and discover what types of posts your audience is responding to.

In Part 2, we will go over an example calendar
in steps 4-7 and how to tailor a content calendar to your needs! 

How will you use the steps above to plan your
content? Let us know what themes you developed and what types of content you’ll
create in the comments below!

Category: Blogging, Social Media Marketing 101