Ah, Instagram! The social media rock star that has captured the imagination of people of all ages, from every type of background, and, yes, celebrities' agents. But, Instagram is an excellent tool for non-profits and charities, as well, and that's what we will centre upon now. Your London-based charity or non-profit may not be taking advantage of this ubiquitous site.
- Over eighty percent of Instagram's user base lives outside of the US
- Instagram is the home of 25 million business profiles
- Each month the site has 800 million active users
- Sixty percent of online adults use Instagram
- Fifty percent of Instagram users follow at least one business
- Sixty percent of Instagram users say they learned of a product or service through the Instagram platform
This social media giant is now a global platform. Instagram can humanize a non-profit's content, recruit volunteers, showcase activities, inspire readers, and raise donation amounts.
- The photo and video-sharing app have more than one-half of its active users visiting the site daily.
- Thirty-five percent of active users visit Instagram several times a day.
- Seventy percent of Instagram users have searched the site to find a specific brand.
- Non-profits and charities can promote their organisations in a friendly, authentic manner, rather than depending on any "hard-sell tactics."
Setting Up an Instagram Account
Before we get to the mechanics of setting up your account, there are a few facts the organisation needs to understand about this platform, including:
- For Instagram success, the non-profit will need to invest in specific resources that will help with posting regularly (daily, if possible).
- The organisation's profile must remain fresh to keep followers engaged.
- The Instagram app is downloadable from the App Store or the Google Play Store. The non-profit will need the Instagram app to upload content.
- The charity must pick a username that its audience will recognise and which is easy to find. If the organisation wants to change its name in the future, it can update its username later in account settings.
Optimising an Instagram Account
Charity or non-profits want to stand out among the crowd. Your best move to make that happen is refining the organisation's profile picture. This picture is your visitors' first impression. It will need to assist users in getting to know what your non-profit is all about, and how you want them to interact with the charity.
- The profile picture can include a logo or another image that is familiar to the community. All profile pictures become cropped into a circle, so keep that in mind when the non-profit chooses the image.
- The Instagram bio can have only 150 characters, so be concise, direct, and compelling when choosing the content. Encourage users to take a particular action, such as visiting your website or following a hashtag. The bio is the only time a clickable URL can be featured to drive traffic to an external site. Consider aligning a highlighted URL with a recent post. The profile can remain uncluttered by using HubSpot's Tracking URL builder, Bitly, or Goo.gl link shorteners.
- Place the organisation's website address into the URL link.
- Put your email and phone number in the bio, as well, and on top of Instagram's Calls to Action. The charity's site can become a powerful tool to enlarge its B2B and B2C communities.
- Follow accounts that are captivating and relate to your charity. The organisation may find businesses or influencers who might be interested in assisting the non-profit.
Choosing an Instagram Hashtag
- Use hashtags because, for most accounts, they help with growth
- For each hashtag, there is a discovery page where the organisation's post opens for comparison with all others that used the site lately. Instagram picks sites and uses its rating system to decide on the most attractive and appealing Instagram posts. If someone else sees you on the discovery page, they may click on the hashtag, like the site, and perhaps even follow the Instagram home of the charity.
- Charities can use this site to get suggestions for popular, related hashtags for the non-profit's niche. This program is an excellent way to gauge competition. Test the app out and take a look at the London non-profit hashtags that are getting plenty of attention. The more new hashtags, the better the organisation's growth.
- Combining general, trending hashtags and specific-to-your-site hashtags will increase the charity's outreach and relevance.
- Create a branded hashtag which followers can use when they post content related to your charity.
- These companies offer hashtag services for charities and businesses alike: Hashtagify, Hashatit, hashtags.org, tagboard, All #ashtag, talkwalker
- Promote your Instagram campaigns outside of the Instagram platform. Share Instagram information on Twitter or Facebook and ask people to follow the organisation. Add your hashtag to your email signature. Add easy click-through on your website.
In the Instagram account settings portion of the site, the organisation may change passwords, view "liked" posts, and enable notifications. Other settings include:
Brand engagement occurs when all followers can see and reply to the stories posted.
If the organisation has a Facebook business page, the entity may switch to an Instagram business profile.
Additional Instagram Accounts
Users can add up to five accounts and switch between them without having to log in or out. This feature also allows for multiple people to log into the account at one time.
Types of Posts on Instagram
Images - the most standard Instagram posting
Behind-the-Scenes Posts - pictures that go behind the scenes and allow users to see the charity's authenticity
Reposts from Employees - posting employees' and volunteers' pictures curates genuine content and humanises your cause
Educational Posts - showing the audience what volunteer jobs are available in the charity; or encouraging volunteers to share crafts or supplies for the non-profit (fund-raising ideas, perhaps)
Influencer Posts - use the post of a well-known public figure, a celebrity, or an athlete to promote your charity and gain the attention of the celebrities' audiences
Motivational Posts - post quotes, book passages, or other writings that align with the mission of the non-profit
User-Generated Content - share the organisation's fans and followers photos (with appropriate credit, of course)
Newsjacking - participate in local, national, or global trends that connect in some way to the cause
These words, according to the Nature Boys, are an excellent way to describe what makes a hit on Instagram:
In today's world, people have seen it all. Everyone is looking for a new twist, a different way of seeing and saying, and something that will make their imagination reel. That's what non-profits and businesses of all kinds must remember.
When perusing Instagram, viewers often find inspiration from the lovely images they discover. Fantastic pictures are what makes Instagram singularly useful.
There is a reason that visitors don't see many black and white photographs on Instagram. Cruising through Instagram is like a rare and marvelous journey through people's lives. The image the organisation uses has to compete if it is to make a difference.
The thrill of victory, the agony of defeat, and all the other feelings people experience are on the pages of Instagram. The smiling faces on diners' as their plates come to the table and the crying face of a young child who falls from his bike are the types of feelings shown on Instagram. What your charity puts on its Instagram site can make a person want to be a part of the movement.
Many non-profits have come to realise that storytelling is a marketing must because:
- Stories assist marketers in developing deeper connections with their audience.
- Storytelling is a vital method of learning.
- Telling stories can be a crucial tactical tool to allow marketers to engage consumers who live in a world of fragmented media.
When it comes to charitable giving, the way to encourage potential donors may be to heighten their feelings of awe. Showing images of towering trees, raging rivers, or the abundance of stars in the sky may lead people to behave more generously.
How to Build Donations
- Consider organising an event or workshop with other non-profits in your niche. Such a gathering will allow the people in the organisation to meet other influencers and followers. This type of meeting is an outstanding time to discuss the passions shared with other like-minded charities. The event could be a paid get-together or an opportunity to improve relationships with the non-profit's audience and new followers.
- If your non-profit offers followers t-shirts, bumper stickers, window stickers, workshops, literature, or anything else to sell, it might want to combine the organisation's Instagram store with an online eCommerce store using Shopify (or Ecwid).
- Keep followers engaged by sharing many activities, fundraisers, workshops, and day to day actions. The more people know about what is going on at the charity, the more likely they are to donate.
- Ask friends of the organisation, fellow non-profits, and followers to promote your events or donation pages.
- Non-profits can reinvest funds to grow their community. They can receive monthly pledges and engage with members on a deeper level by using Patreon.
- Charities can receive a unique link that allows them to recommend items from eBay to their following and earn a 50 to 70 percent commission when items are purchased.
- Amazon offers something similar with its Amazon Influencer Program. Recommend products to your audience and get rewarded.
- Moteefe allows users to sell custom merchandise online. The organisation uploads its designs. The company transfers designs to a variety of products like t-shirts, phone cases, and more. The non-profit launches and promotes its campaign on Instagram, and the charity receives more donations.
- The US National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health found, through a study, that when the number of people in need of help increases, people's level of compassion tends to decrease. It is better to focus on one person the non-profit helps to lessen what is called the collapse of compassion. Consider using the charity's Instagram to tell the story of one individual at a time.
- Adding tangible details about the charity's interventions increases donations. The enhanced explanations work to help participants see that their generosity has had an impact. Intervention details can post to the non-profit's ongoing Instagram feed.
How to Obtain More Followers
The top ways to gain more followers include:
- Make sure your profile is optimised.
- Post at the right time. Discover when your followers are most likely to be online. Instagram Insights can give you this information. Regularly look into this data to find out when your community engagement is highest.
- Usually, Mondays and Thursdays are the best days to post to your Instagram site, especially from 8 to 9 AM. Try not to post between 3 - 4 PM.
- Post consistently.
- Offer fantastic visuals.
- Show up and engage in real conversation with followers.
- Hang out on other Instagram sites that have a similar mindset as the charity represented.
- Make authentic comments.
- Others will notice the charity's logo, or comments and may visit the non-profit's site.
- User-generated content is always a plus and will extend the organisation's reach.
- Interact with your audience.
Instagram's Tips for Non-Profits
- Register your account as a "business profile" on Instagram. List as a non-profit, so people who see the profile for the organisation know this is a social mission.
- Save stories to "Story Highlights." There is no fear of over posting when using Story Highlights.
- Switch seamlessly between the business account and the personal account.
- Direct viewers to your site by creating creative links in the charity's bio section.
- Follow the Instagram blog, which offers business account updates, announcements, and tips.
- Make sure the "Private Account" option is turned off.
- Post both video and photo content.
- Have push notifications on at least one of the organisation's phones to receive notices that need immediate responses.
- Minimise Instagram's data usage by turning on the "Use Less Data" feature.
- Use "Posts You've Liked" to keep a record of content you recently "liked."
- See what your followers are liking.
- Schedule posts ahead of time.
Non-profits can use Instagram to increase donations, to get their charity noticed, and to spread information concerning their cause. Now could be the best time to consider an Instagram site.