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A Quick Guide to Building and Using Your Non Profit Facebook Page

The first of a series of blogs – upcoming blogs include: How to Set Up and Use A Twitter Account and Blog to Drive Traffic to Your Website

By Marcie L. Wagner, CFRE

A free service offered by Facebook; you can not only promote yourself (as most do), it is increasing essential to promote you nonprofit in order to share your stories, photos attached to freeservice1those stories or photos of your events. A Facebook page for your organization gain you “fans” rather than “friends” through the “like” button. Similar to a personal Facebook page, you want to continually update it with organization information, status updates, links to related issues, photos and videos. Make sure to encourage your followers or “fans” to like and share your stories and photos.

Why spend you limited time creating and updating you Facebook page? First, it is the most widely used social media network platform with over 500 million people actively using it each MONTH. Further, over 50% of these users log on during any given DAY. You must begin now to take advantage of this mass community.

In July of last year, James Parsons kindly walked audiences through how to set up your facebook page which I will share for you here.

How to build a Facebook page for your non-profit organization?

1.    Define your organization. This may sound obvious, but still, you should plan and know very carefully what the Page is all about: the organization’s story, mission, and its audience. Establish and program your Page with that in mind.

2.    Create the Page. At this point, you’ll be doing the ‘computer’ aspect of your journey to social goodness.

3.    Visit https://www.facebook.com/pages/create.php

Just a reminder, IF you have a personal account, you should be logged in to that personal account before you can create the Page. This account will be used as the Page’s administrator. Facebook doesn’t allow users to create a Page without it linking to a personal account. Pages are not separate Facebook accounts and do not have separate login information from your timeline. They are just different entities on their site, similar to how Groups and Events function. You may add other administrators later on to help you manage a Page. But don’t worry, people who choose to like your Page won’t be able to see that you are the Page admin or have ANY access to your personal timeline

4.   At the ‘Create a Page’ site, select the category “Company, Organization or                  Institution”.
5.   Choose from the drop-down list the category “Non-Profit Organization”.
6.   Type the name of the organization. Be sure to select a name that will represent          your organization in the long term.
7.   Check the “I agree to Facebook Pages Terms”
8.   Finally, click the “Get Started” button.
9.   Next, you’ll be redirected to the Set Up section, where you’ll be asked to fill in             details for your Page.

  1. About

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 Keep your organizations brand in mind. Your page and the questions that follow should all reflect the same branding as your organizations website and materials. “About” your organization you will write a brief description of your organization. I recommend you state your mission. You will add your website, Twitter, Blog links and any other links to the social media that you are currently using. If you are not using any, stay posted to my subsequent blogs which will cover these additional opportunities.  Please understand that Facebook  isn’t limited to only one site, and I recommend using as many websites as possible for SEO (Search Engine Optimization) purposes. Just click “Add Another Site”, and you can key in all the necessary additional sites your organization is linked to – you may also go back and update this information as you expand your online presence. Before clicking “Save Info”, answer the question “Is ‘name of your organization’ a real organization, school or government?”

Profile Picture

I recommend you use your organizations logo and adhere to their size requirements so your logo fits their window and doesn’t end up looking fuzzy, stretched out, cut off etc. They make it easy, you simply upload a picture from your computer. Or go to your website, right click on your logo, click “save as” and save it to your desktop so you can easily find it when you upload the picture from your computer. You can skip this step, if you haven’t decided a logo yet, but I would rather recommend that you place a photo that depicts your brand until you do have your logo in place. You can change this picture at any time.

Facebook Web Address
Choose a unique Facebook web address to make it easier for people to find your Page. Facebook usually suggests a name, but you can also choose your own. Consider first using the name of your organization, if that is taken, it should be similar, perhaps you don’t use all the words of the name of your organization. Once this is set, it CAN’T BE CHANGED. If you aren’t sure what to write, you can skip this step and come back to it later.

Reach more people
This is the part where you’ll be asked if you would want to advertise on Facebook. It is quite a good deal if you are a membership organization, especially to a newly published Page. With this, you can raise awareness about your organization and get more people to like your Page. The downside is it’s not free. If you’re interested, there are three payment methods to choose from (i.e. Credit/Debit Card, PayPal, and Direct Debit). Or, again, you can skip this step and come back later if you change your mind. You can also stop advertising at any time as well.

Add to Favorites

If you have have a personal profile page, this section will help you to add your Page to your ‘Favorites’ section of your personal profile for easy access anytime and don’t forget to become your pages first ‘fan’, you can also send a message to all of your contacts to become a fan of your page. Make certain to do this, depending on how many friends you have, you can already build a healthy audience and it looks very good to new visitors to you nonprofit page.

Administration Panel

Familiarize yourself with the Admin Panel. At the top of your Page’s timeline, you can see the admin panel. Poke around all of the different settings found at the “Edit Page” button.freeservice3Select”Edit Settings” and you’ll be redirected in the “Manage Permissions” page. You can change some of these, if not all, to your desired choice.

Add another Administrator, perhaps this is the staff person or volunteer who is familiar with facebook and will to keep it updated regularly. That option can be found in the “Settings” page. Look for the “Admin Roles” option and there you can add admins with different roles. They can be a manager (they have access to all editing options), a content creator (can’t manage admin roles), a moderator (can respond to and delete comments on the Page, send messages as the Page, create ads, and view insights), an advertiser (can create ads and view insights), and finally, an insights analyst (can only view insights). There is no limit to the number of admins a Page can have.

When we’re talking about organizations in Facebook Pages especially non-profits, always remember: Photos and videos are everything. These multimedia contents are much more compelling than status updates. They are more engaging, especially if the video or photo is linked to your website – this way your facebook page is driving traffic to your website or website donation page or event sign up page – you can link them wherever you would like.

Add an appealing Cover Photo.

Facebook now has the large Cover Banner. Here, you can upload a photo that will serve as your Page’s promotional banner. Choose a photo for this one, grab a picture of an event, or of your clients. Again remember to pay attention to their dimensions so the photo is not fuzzy, too large or too small.

Share your content.

Post your first status. Talk in the first person, it’s more personal and authentic. Create a two-way dialogue with your fans and supporters. Share exclusive photos and videos that will engage your audience. The more you post, the more people you’ll attract and the faster you’ll grow your Page’s followers. Build the community you envisioned. Good luck!

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