How Charities Can Leverage Social Media for Success: Enhancing Objectives, Support, and Donations 


Social media continues to be a powerful tool for charities to amplify their impact and reach a wider audience.

With its vast user base and potential for engagement, social media platforms provide an invaluable opportunity for charitable organisations to promote their causes, build a supportive community, and generate increased support and donations.

Social media also offers a low barrier to entry for charities in terms of advertising spend and skills availability for recruitment.

This article explores how charities can leverage social media and its tools to benefit their objectives and drive positive change.

How can charities build an engaged audience?

Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn offer extensive reach, providing a great opportunity for charities to connect with a range of audiences.

Using in-built reporting tools, charities can explore key information about the audience of each of their platforms to explore and understand their audience.

This includes the likes of demographic information, as well as insights into reach and engagement.

How Charities Can Leverage Social Media for Success: Enhancing Objectives, Support, and Donations 

These insights can help you to understand who is resonating best with your content. Post by post, the analytic reports will give you insights into what performed best.

These insights allow you to do more of what your audiences loves helping you to build up repeat engagement and loyalty with your page.

Once an engaged audience has been established, the door opens for charities to leverage that audience to achieve the charity’s mission.

Strategies to build an engaged online community

Consistent Branding

Establish a strong visual identity and cohesive brand across social media platforms.

Having consistency in logos, colours, and messaging creates recognition and builds trust among followers.

Consider how you can customise your pages to ensure they appear on brand. For example, adding branded profile pictures, cover photos and using proprietary images where possible will all help to maintain a personalised feel.

Tools such as Canva offer a great way for charities with no in-house design skills to quickly deploy professional looking design materials.

How Charities Can Leverage Social Media for Success: Enhancing Objectives, Support, and Donations 

Compelling Content

Share impactful stories, images, and videos that highlight the mission and achievements of the charity.

Emotional storytelling drives engagement and encourages people to support the cause.

If your charity is unable to feature individual case studies or service users, think about other ways to share stories.

For example, an employee could talk about the story from their perspective, or give statistics which relate to the success of a project or initiative.

Influencer Partnerships

Collaborate with influential individuals and social media personalities who align with the charity’s values.

Their endorsement can significantly expand the charity’s reach and credibility.

For smaller charities, large celebrity endorsements are not possible within the marketing budgets. In this instance, consider which key names exist in the local community who could help to share the message in an authoritative way.

Community Engagement

Foster a sense of community by actively responding to comments, messages, and mentions.

Encourage supporters to share their experiences and engage in conversations related to the cause.

How to produce shareable content?

One of the key advantages of social media is its ability to amplify content through shares, retweets, and reposting.

By creating shareable content, charities can extend their reach and attract new supporters. Here are a few tactics to consider:

Visual Appeal

Utilise compelling visuals such as infographics, images, and videos to convey messages concisely and attract attention within the crowded social media landscape.

Visual content is reportedly 40 times more likely to get shared than all text content. So although it can be more effort to produce, the results should speak for themselves.

Where possible, try to use your own images and video content for a more authentic feel for your followers.

Seeing real people and real images from your charity will help to increase their emotional engagement with the content you share.

How Charities Can Leverage Social Media for Success: Enhancing Objectives, Support, and Donations 

Viral Campaigns

Launch campaigns that leverage trending topics or viral challenges to capture public interest and encourage widespread sharing.

These campaigns can be designed to raise awareness, encourage donations, or drive specific actions.

When a new trend emerges, consider how it could be adapted to fit the charity’s narrative. Some just may not be appropriate, and these should be disregarded.

Here are some great ways to find trending topics:

  • Google Trends – a great tool for monitoring what is being spoken about online, in a very broad and holistic sense. This is a great place to start with understanding what the popular topics are at a given time.
  • Top Hashtags – a useful place to find out which hashtags are currently trending on Instagram.
  • Buzz Sumo – more suitable for larger charities (as it has a subscription fee), Buzz Sumo is a great place to identify which content is trending across different social media platforms. It also is a great way of finding trends for specific industry verticals which may be relevant to some of the more specific charities e.g. charities linked with animals, specific geographic regions, armed forces.

Another great way beyond these helpful tools, is to be actively involved in social media browsing your news feed and following key influencers in your space.

This will help you be at the forefront of what active conversations are taking place, while also giving you more opportunities to contribute and join the conversation.

User-Generated Content

Encourage followers to create and share content related to the charity’s cause.

By featuring user-generated content, charities demonstrate authenticity and empower their supporters, further amplifying the reach of their message.

There are a number of ways in which charities can encourage followers to get involved. For example:

  • Identifying opportunities to ask to be tagged or where you can promote a branded hashtag. Good examples of this include if you are putting on a large event where you could ask people to tag you in any photos they take or include an event specific hashtag.
  • Launch competitions which encourage people to take action. For example competitions to create or grow something or share their own stories or experiences.

Calls-to-Action (CTAs)

Incorporate clear and concise CTAs in posts, guiding followers on how they can support the charity, whether it’s through donations, volunteering, or spreading awareness.

When posting your content, always be sure to include relevant links so that it is as easy as possible for people to follow up with an action.

Fundraising through social media

Social media has revolutionised the way charities approach fundraising efforts. By leveraging the power of online communities, charities can generate more support and donations. Consider the following strategies:

Crowdfunding Campaigns

Use popular crowdfunding platforms like GoFundMe, JustGiving, or Kickstarter to raise funds for specific projects or urgent needs.

Promote these campaigns extensively across social media channels, providing regular updates and acknowledging donors publicly.

Encourage anyone who does donate to share this with friends – this helps to create that emotional connection that may encourage their network to also take action.

Peer-to-Peer Fundraising

When your followers are partaking in a fundraising for your charity, encourage them to create their own fundraising pages and share them on their social networks.

By tapping into the networks of individual supporters, charities can expand their reach exponentially.

When fundraisers share their own stories and motivations for participating, their own connections may be more interested in following your charity and engaging with your content.

Facebook Fundraising

Facebook in particular offers unique fundraising tools which allow users to create dedicated fundraising pages for specific causes and invite friends to donate.

This is most commonly seen as part of a birthday fundraiser which an individual can set up to drive support from friends and family in lieu of a card or gift.

How Charities Can Leverage Social Media for Success: Enhancing Objectives, Support, and Donations 

The platform provides transparency, ease of use, and a wide user base for maximum exposure.

Corporate Partnerships

Leverage social media to build relationships with potential corporate partners.

Engage in mutually beneficial collaborations, such as cause-related marketing campaigns, where companies donate a percentage of sales to the charity.

Promote these partnerships on social media platforms to generate support and increase donations.

LinkedIn offers a particularly good opportunity for this given that their network is primarily professionals.

When an individual comments on a post on LinkedIn, it is then shared on the feed of their own network. This helps reach grow quite exponentially in a short space of time.

Leveraging Social Media Tools

In addition to popular social media platforms, various tools and features can enhance a charity’s social media presence and effectiveness:

  • Social Media Management Platforms – employ social media management tools like Hootsuite or Buffer to schedule posts, manage multiple accounts, and monitor conversations across different platforms. These platforms provide efficiency, consistency, and streamlined workflows for social media activities.
  • Hashtag Campaigns – create and promote branded hashtags to facilitate conversations, increase visibility, and encourage user-generated content related to the charity’s cause. Use hashtags strategically across platforms to boost engagement and drive participation.
  • Live Video Streaming – leverage platforms like Facebook Live, Instagram Live, or YouTube Live to stream events, fundraising initiatives, or behind-the-scenes content. Live videos create a sense of immediacy and foster deeper connections with followers.

In summary

In the digital era, social media presents unparalleled opportunities for charities in the UK to advance their objectives, build an engaged audience, and generate increased support and donations. By consistently sharing compelling content, creating shareable experiences, and leveraging social media tools, charities can amplify their impact, raise awareness, and build a strong online community of passionate supporters. Embracing social media as a powerful ally, charities can thrive in their mission to create positive change in society.

We hope this article gave you an insight into how charities can leverage social media. However if you think your charity might need further support, Atelier offers social media management for charities to help them to better utilise social media platforms to create tangible results. We also offer a variety of different digital marketing training options. If you would like to talk through how we could help, get in touch with us today!