Board Members and Social Media: How to Be Involved

Nonprofit board members tend to be community members who are well-connected and dedicated to the cause. In order to support their organization, they need to be involved with the oversight of the mission, and establish effective strategy for carrying out programs, events, and fundraising.

Now more than ever, social media is an essential tool in communicating to existing and potential nonprofit members. Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram are hugely important platforms for an organization to engage with millennials and the Generation Z demographic — individuals who are tech savvy and passionate about what they support. Here are a few ways board members can be involved with their organization’s social media marketing presence.

Elect Social Media Representatives

In order to avoid crossed wires and miscommunication that can result in a sloppy social media presence, elect one or two people from the board and staff as social media representatives. Whether that person is specifically trained in social media marketing, or is just in charge of posting for the organization on multiple platforms, knowing who to talk to in order to share ideas across the board member and staff line is critical.

Stick to Policies and Guidelines

Social media guidelines should be clear and accessible to anyone associated with the organization. Guidelines should outline what is and what is not appropriate to post on business social media pages as well as public-facing personal social media pages in order to keep the organization looking professional and mission-driven. Board members should ensure that all staff and members of the board review the policies and sign off on them.

Plan Monthly or Quarterly Focuses

Board members and staff should collaborate on approved focuses for each month or quarter. Instead of being sent every single social media post to approve, board members should approve preset themes and detailed content calendars created and sent over by the staff’s social media representative. Staff and board members should allow for a two-week approval period for content calendars and plan accordingly so the organization is never behind schedule.

Become an Advocate for the Mission

Social media allows the instant sharing of information, ideas, and connections from across the globe, so board members should use it to their advantage when it comes to being an ambassador for their organization. Linking to organizations in personal profiles, commenting on social media posts to get the conversation going, spreading the news about fundraisers, and inviting followers to RSVP to events are all ways board members can champion their nonprofit via social media platforms. Creating a Google Alert for the name of the organization can ensure that board members are notified of when and where they can join in conversation.

Board members and staff have to plan on working together in order to manage a social media presence that’s effective, personable, and appealing. Communication between representatives on each side will keep everyone on the same page, and reviewing policies and planned content calendars will prevent risky surprises when it comes time to post. Board members should be dedicated and passionate about their organization’s success, and rallying behind their mission via social media, even behind the scenes, is critical in this day and age.