Guest Blog Post By Allison Carter, Roundpeg Director of Communications

Notice any changes in your Facebook Insights
If you ever take a glance at the Insights tab on your Facebook Fan Page, you might have had a nasty shock recently: The number of fans who see your posts has cratered in recent months. Today, only about 15% of your Facebook fans see any given post.

Want to reach a larger audience? Facebook can help—for a price. Depending on the size of your audience, promoting a post might range from a few dollars to hundreds.  Even if your nonprofit posts only a couple times a week, that cost can add up in a hurry.

Sure, we could sit around and cry about how it’s not fair (and it isn’t), or we could refocus on what matters on our Facebook pages. As a nonprofit, it’s up to you to make tough choices about where your marketing dollar is going to go the furthest.

As Facebook continues to shift its strategy, it’s time to recalibrate your own. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Why is my organization on Facebook? Why did you get into this crazy medium in the first place? “Because everyone else is doing it” is not an adequate answer. What concrete benefit were you hoping to gain from it: increased awareness, better communication with your most loyal donors and volunteers, a driver for donations?
  • Have we seen results so far? Do volunteers come up to you and say “oh yeah, I saw you were doing that from your Facebook page”? If so, you’ve seen a result. Have you seen more people clicking those links you’re sharing on Facebook and take the next step by donating, volunteering or otherwise doing what you want them to? Whatever a “result” looks like for your organization, has it worked so far?
  • How much are those results worth to me? So let’s say you’ve met your goals. People are donating from the fan page, RSVPing for events and volunteering. If so, would you see an increase if more people saw your posts? Or, by appealing to your most loyal fan base, are you already doing the most good?

Setting up clear goals and metrics for your fan page has never been more critical. As costs increase, you need to hold your marketing accountable. Ask yourself these questions, experiment with sponsoring a few of your best posts that offer clear call-to-action and see if it’s worth it to you. But be on your toes– after all, Facebook could change at any time.

Allison
Allison Carter is director of communications for Roundpeg, an Indianapolis marketing firm that specializes in helping small businesses become big businesses. She spends most of her days up to her elbows in words, working with small businesses to tell their unique stories through strategic social media use and rousing copywriting. Follow her on Twitter @AllisonLCarter or read more at roundpeg.biz.