You know your ministry must be active and engaged on social media, but where do you find the time?
Here’s how your ministry can excel at social media in 30 minutes a day:
It will save you more time in the long run if you take the time to choose social media management tools and a process that will work for your ministry. Here are some recommendations:
Choose Social Media Tools
Set up a Bit.ly URL shortener account. You need to be able to post shortened URLs on social media (especially on Twitter where you only have 140 characters for a tweet). You also need to be able to track engagement with your social media URLs.
Set up an account with Buffer and download the app; consider applying for the nonprofit membership. Connect each of your social accounts to Buffer. Connect your bit.ly URL shortener account also to your Buffer account. Links will now automatically be shortened when you share posts through Buffer.
Determine where your audience primarily resides in social media. If you’re targeting a mid- to older audience, they might mostly be on Facebook. If you’re targeting a younger audience, they might mostly be on Instagram or YouTube. If you’re targeting a tech-savvy audience, they might mostly be on Twitter. Know which social media channels you must emphasize in order to reach your target audience and persuade them back to your website.
Sign up with Canva so you can create free social media graphics. For royalty-free pictures, use sites like:
If you want more flexibility and features from Canva, you’ll need to pay for an account. But check out Canva for Nonprofits for this.
For additional (free!) social media graphics, check out:
Stick to a Plan
If you spend a little time creating a social media and content plan in advance, you’ll save a lot of time each day trying to figure out what (and how) to post.
At the beginning of each quarter, take an hour to review your organization’s calendar and determine what events, campaigns and content will need to be promoted and when.
Next, go through a holiday calendar to understand what special holidays must be factored into your ministry’s social content. For example, will you need to create content for Easter? Will you need to hold posting anything on September 11?
Use Google Marketer’s Almanac
Last, look through trends and determine if you should create content around trending topics.
Use Google Trends
Use Trello to create your own
What’s really important here is to understand not just when you’ll post content, but also how. For example, for each campaign you might:
1. Create a landing page on your website with a call to action (what do you want visitors to that page to do after reading it?)
2. Go to Google Campaign URL Builder to create a unique URL for that landing page—and shorten it via bitly—so you can keep track of that campaign’s performance in Google Analytics (go to Acquisition > Campaigns)
3. Create 3-5 social media graphics for that page. Don’t forget to adjust the size according to the specifications of each social media platform (you can do this in about 2 seconds in the paid version of Canva)
4. Create 5 or more social media posts for your campaign and schedule them to each of your ministry’s social media profiles in Buffer
5. To ensure your social media posts are seen? Consider paying to promote (or “boost”) certain posts
6. Don’t forget to review performance for each campaign in Google Analytics
Decide on a Process
You might want to create social media guidelines for your ministry. Guidelines can either outline what types of staff posts and behavior online are acceptable and/or what types of posts your ministry will create and respond to—and in what tone and manner.
Use Intel’s Guidelines for Social Media Participation
Now that you have your processes, plan and tools in check, you can save a lot of time each day managing social media for your ministry:
10 minutes – Review your posts for the day in Buffer to make sure all is set up correctly and ready to go
20 Minutes – Respond as needed to people who have messaged or @replied to your ministry
Create New Posts for the Week
1 Hour, Once a Week – at the beginning (or end) of each week, set up your social media content for the upcoming (or following, respectively) week