“I only am on Facebook so that I can stay in touch with long-distance family and friends. I don’t want to have to use it professionally as well.”
“Google+ is confusing to me. I’m not sure what to post or how to interact as an organization.”
“Facebook is the only way that I am able to keep in touch with my high school and college friends. Are there funders even on Facebook?”
“I already have LinkedIn and Facebook, so why would I want to be on Google+ as another network to maintain?”
Do any or all of these objections to using Facebook or Google Plus professionally as part of your grant seeking and grant management efforts sound familiar? Have you uttered them yourself? Or have had colleagues share them as their own objections? We at SmartEGrants believe that there can be significant value and ROI for you in considering how to use Facebook and Google Plus for grants. Facebook and Google Plus are not just for keeping in touch with family, friends, and colleagues. They can both be powerful tools by themselves when the messaging, stories, and interactions are properly crafted.
Facebook and Google+ are powerful tools to tell stories about possible grant funding partnerships with emphasis on the power of the pictures you share. Facebook and Google Plus are an even more powerful tool for promoting your funded grants and your grant funding partners other work. Instead of being in a situation where you are putting together press releases about a funding award or a success story for a funded project, you now control the release and distribution of those stories and related pictures. You can release them via Facebook or Google + and tag your funders as a means to engage them in the story, thank them for their funding, and keep them updated on your progress. Because Facebook is the largest internet network and Google Plus has the advantage of increasing your organization’s visibility (think SEO and Google search), you and your organization will want to consider how to harness the power of these two social network powerhouses for your grant life cycle.
Here are a few ways these social networks fit into our grant life cycle:
- Grant and Funder Research
- Building Relationships and Communities for Projects and Causes
- Raising Awareness: Visible Grant Stewardship, Program Participation, Crowdfunding, Events
- Data: ROI, Evaluation, and Demographics
Do we encourage you to add all social media networks at the same time in order to help integrate social media into your grant seeking efforts? Absolutely not. Take one network at a time. Consider how to integrate it into your grant seeking and grant management efforts. Once comfortable on one network, consider how to add a second, and then a third, etc.
Considering focusing on Facebook and Google+ as a way to launch your integrated focus on social networks and grants? Join us for our Blueprints for Grants: Social Media for Grants: Facebook and Google+ on Thursday, February 19 at 12pm EST for only $25. You get the slides and the recording for registering, so even if you can’t join us live, you can listen in and ask questions via email at your convenience. Register here.
You can also join us for tomorrow’s (February 17 at 12pm EST) conversation on #grantchat where we will be talking about some of our personal experiences and examples of using Facebook and Google+ for grants. You can read the preview questions here.