Sponsored by NTEN, Common Knowledge and Blackbaud, the 2012 Nonprofit Social Networking Benchmark Report came out last week. This 4th annual report on nonprofits & social networks is intended to provide insights for both nonprofits, foundations and those serving this sector about behaviour and trends relating to social networking as part of the nonprofits’ marketing, communications, fundraising, program and IT work.
Conducted between 24th January and 21st February this year, nonprofit professionals completed an online survey covering two main categories of questions:
- Commercial Social Networks: Looking at the use of commercial social networks e.g. Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Google+, etc.
- House Social Networks: Looking at the social networks built and managed by the nonprofits
The report summarises the 3,522 responses received and provides top insights for this year, top trends and future trends to watch, top factors for social network success as well as community size and monetary costs/gains through social network entities.
Visual.ly have designed this rather attractive and informative infographic to support the report’s findings, but of course the full Nonprofit Social Networking Benchmark Report can be downloaded for free if you want more detailed information.
It’s probably no surprise that Facebook is the most utilised network with 98% of nonprofits having a presence on Facebook in 2012 and an average community size a healthy 8,317. Twitter is the next most utilised at 72%, followed by Linkedin with 44%. It will be interesting come next year to see how Google+ and Pinterest perform for the nonprofits.
However engaging in social networks uses resource, which is one thing all nonprofits have in short supply. While 79% of nonprofits only have one person spending half or less of their time on this, and 74% allocate a budget of less than $10,000 it’s worth noting that staffing and budget levels for maintaining social networking activities is on the increase.
The main 2012 goals given for commercial social networking activity was “Grow our Base” at 76% and “Engage Members More” at 74%. Given the low cost of acquisition, it is understandable that nonprofits and supporting organisations are keen to maximise these channels.