Facebook pervades all aspects of our lives and has become one of the most accessible sources for current events, social interactions, crowd sourcing, and voicing opinions. Facebook, therefore, has become a key component in building your organization’s brand identity. You are responsible for not only staying on top of the constant Facebook updates, but also ensuring that your content is always fresh, intriguing, and inviting. If executed properly, Facebook is an effective tool to gain support from our community, both on and offline. This blog series will focus specifically on social media as a platform for volunteer engagement. Your organization can garner active participation for your programs by recruiting, recognizing, and retaining volunteers within the Facebook community.
Before getting started, be aware of the challenges. Your volunteer managers must be prepared for the influx of volunteers with trainings and worthwhile activities. If your organization recruits volunteers before you have the capacity to manage them, volunteers will leave feeling unvalued and unfulfilled. You risk angry Facebook posts from these frustrated volunteers, which can hurt your reputation. Organizations all too often think that Facebook is a free and simple way to promote and recruit, not understanding that social media demands additional resources. If your organization does not have the resources to accommodate the demands of Facebook, you can enlist dedicated volunteers, but be cautious because they will be directly representing your brand and public image. To avoid tarnishing your reputation, write out a policy handbook and train your volunteers (and employees) to follow these procedures.
Check back for a new update on #volunteersinsocialmedia.
How does your organization use Facebook to engage volunteers? Tell me what you think.