The COVID-19 pandemic has forced businesses across the globe to rely on virtual platforms to communicate their brand more than ever before. Among those most impacted by this change are nonprofit organizations that conduct marketing to increase their social influence. While the transition from hybrid communication models to fully digital marketing has required some adjustment for these organizations, recent trends show that communication through social media has actually opened up new opportunities for growth for nonprofits. This potential is due, in large part, to technological advancements that increase connection with audiences, as well as the increased desire of individuals to give.
The New Age of Social Media
According to Smart Insights, an online training and learning platform for marketing professionals, about 54 percent of Americans rely on communication from social media as their first source of news – a number that is expected to increase in the coming years. While most businesses are now seeing the need for increased social media engagement, many nonprofits were already heavily involved in the digital world prior to the pandemic, giving them an advantage when traditional communications were disrupted in March 2020. In fact, nonprofit organizations have been responsible for a large portion of social media activity over the past year as individuals search for ways to give back to their communities. As users’ eyes locked on the timelines of their Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter accounts, nonprofits were already prepared to captivate their audiences and increase engagement.
Participation in Charitable Giving
Nonprofits were initially concerned that charitable giving would decrease due to fewer in-person opportunities for giving, as well as the financial hardships brought on by COVID-19. However, the opposite has proven to be true. Despite the fact that COVID-19 impacted finances for many Americans, surveys from the MIT 2020 Technology Review have shown that 87 percent of individuals plan on participating in charitable giving in 2021. In fact, according to Cision PR Web, 55 percent of individuals surveyed intend to donate at least $500 to a charitable cause in 2021. Further, nonprofits have not had issues collecting donations through virtual platforms, as anticipated. Instead, individuals are using these platforms more than ever as the issues caused by the pandemic have tugged on the heartstrings of people across the nation.
Technological Advancements Molding the Future
The ever-changing world of technology has brought new opportunities to the nonprofit world. Digital media has become a vital part of any advertising campaign and recent developments have made it simple for businesses to create content using innovative features. Notably, nonprofits are among the businesses making the most of the newest tech trends – Search Engine Optimization (SEO) channels have helped nonprofits to more accurately identify their audiences, while digital questionnaires and interactive media make it possible to connect with target communities.
Despite concerns, the generosity of Americans combined with tech advances have put nonprofits in a great position to amplify their brand and increase giving. The most successful nonprofits will take advantage of social media, consumer engagement, and new age technology to expand their footprint and carry out their mission of improving the world we live in, during the pandemic and going forward.