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A Look at Nonprofit Social Media Use Studies

The following series will look at the results of several reports released during the 2010 year examining nonprofit use of social media.

Part 3: Twitter

Who is using Twitter?
Between 56-78% of nonprofit organizations surveyed reported using Twitter.  The 2010 year saw significant increase in the number of organizations using Twitter when compared to those reporting use in 2009.

How and why use Twitter?
As a marketing tool, Twitter is utilized mainly to generate awareness of an organization and its cause.  It is not surprising then to note that Twitter is not relied upon as strongly as Facebook for fundraising.

How often is Twitter utilized?
Nonprofits who responded, report posting to Twitter, on average, 4-5 times a day.  Nonprofits that find Twitter to be very effective at meeting their goals, be it generating awareness; increasing website traffic; fundraising; etc., tweet at least daily or more often.

What have been the results?
Increased use of Twitter has resulted in 627% increase in the size of organizations’ community from 2009 to 2010.  The seemingly tremendous growth of Twitter communities can be largely attributed to the significant growth of Twitter itself between 2009 and 2010.  Nonprofits who tweet more than average report a higher rate of retweets and faster growth of their Twitter following.  Of those organizations using Twitter to increase awareness of their brand and cause, 96% agree that Twitter is “very effective” at meeting these goals.

Nonprofits and Social Media: It Ain’t Optional. Ventureneer and Caliber. October 4, 2010.

2010 Nonprofit Social Media Benchmarks Study: An Analysis of Growth and Social Engagement Metrics for Nonprofit Organizations. M+R Strategic Services. 2010.

Nonprofit Social Network Benchmark Report. NTEN (Nonprofit Technology Network), Common Knowledge and ThePort. April 2010.

Using Social Media to Meet Nonprofit Goals: The Results of a Survey. IdealWare, Firefly Partners, Balance Interactive, Beaconfire. February 2010.

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