Social Media tools help you efficiently reach your social media goals. Efficiency is especially important with the limited resources of a nonprofit. Here is a list of the five free social media tools that nonprofits can’t succeed without.
1. Editorial Calendar
An editorial calendar is a must-have planning tool. If you are working with several admins, an editorial calendar keeps everyone on the same page. The ideal calendar can be shared so you can have a few people who can add post ideas. It is also a good idea to share with your boss so they never have to ask, “What are you posting today?” The best editorial calendar I found is the Google calendar. (Although outlook is a good second option). Google calendar meets the most pressing criteria: it is free and you can share it.
I use it to keep track of all the social media posts I’m doing. I have multiple nonprofits who use my social media services and I can keep track of all the calendars in one place. I put the name of the post, what platform it will go on, and the time I scheduled it for (all day if I haven’t scheduled it yet). In the description, I put the copy (or text) of the post, any notes, and who it is assigned to. For example, if I will take care of posting it, I put my name; if someone at the nonprofit is responsible for it, then their name goes in the assigned to space. I also attach any images I want to use. When it is posted I attach the finished post and change the time to the date and time it will go out.
Canva.com is a great free tool to help design images for creating posts and covers. They have templates that allow for Facebook posts, covers, and event covers. LinkedIn and Twitter are also supported. It is a drag-and-drop platform so you don’t have to have a lot of technical knowledge. Canva also has some informative design articles to help the nondesigner. I love this tool and use it every time I create a post or change out Facebook covers.
Adobe’s Spark.com is an easy to use video creation tool. There are templates to use and you can upload videos or photos. With the push of a button the video is created. The drawback is that it is Adobe branded in the free edition. You can pay to have it unbranded for but the branding comes at the very end of the video it still works for on the cheap. I use Spark.com to create videos for Facebook. This tool makes videos quick and easy. And we know video gets better reach on Facebook!
Pixabay is a free commons picture website. That means the pictures are free to use for your nonprofit. While real pictures from your nonprofit is the best choice, I also know that confidentiality and permissions may prohibit you from using the perfect picture. These stock images really help when you have a great story to tell but don’t have permission to use the perfect picture! They are also high resolution so you can use them in you appeals! (P.S. The picture for this post is from Pixabay!)
5. Analytics tools
If you don’t measure what you are doing on social media, then how do you know you are succeeding? Facebook has a good set of analytics built into their insights tab. You can see how well your page is doing by looking at your reach and number of fans. You can drill down and see how your your posts are doing. If you want to know about your fans, there is a section about them too. You can see when your fans are online and schedule your posts accordingly.
For the advanced analytics, you can go to Audience Insights. You can see the people connected to your page and those who are just a part of Facebook. You can see pages they like, consumer behavior, and income levels. (This is a good tool to use to target ads too!)
I use these tools to help me plan posts and see who to target. I have been surprised more than once to find the group responding most to my posts was not the group I was targeting!!