There are many non-profit organizations working for all social issues faced by the world, each with their own community of supporters. Have you ever wondered how these people decide which organization they should support? Or why one NGO is given more preference over the others working for the same issue? The reason people choose a particular organization when there are so many others working for the same cause is because the organization is doing something that catches their attention, something that is different from the rest.
Now, there are many ways to stand apart from the other organizations but nothing beats making your supporters feel included in the actions of your endeavors. Facebook Live is one such way you can get your community to actively participate in your organization’s work.
A recent trend in the digital world — one that NGOs can take full advantage of — is that of live videos. From Instagram to YouTube, almost every major platform is introducing the ‘Live’ feature and people are using it like it’s going out of fashion. Instagrammers are showing off the best parts of their lives, YouTubers are hosting hangout sessions, even social media influencers and for-profits are using it for brand building.
With Facebook Live, NGOs have an opportunity to try out a new and creative way to raise funds and create awareness for their cause.
8 Ways NGOs Can Use Facebook Live
Facebook Live is a great way to interact with your audience in real-time, even more so than face-to-face conversations; you don’t need to be in the same place at the same time, which means that you can connect to anyone in any part of the world as long as they have an internet connection. This opens up the field for a lot more opportunities and options. Let’s look at a few of them.
1. On-Field Videos
When people say that they support an NGO, what they really mean is that they support the cause, that they’re here to change the world. Facebook Live is a great tool to actually make your supporters feel like a part of the change. As an example, the “Best Friends Animal Society ” frequently holds live sessions when they have new arrivals to their shelter. This not only prompts regular supporters to watch and donate, but it also encourages new people to join in. Another very important point to note in these live sessions is that they actively engage with their audience while they are live.
You have FAQs and then you have Facebook Live. In FAQs, you take the most asked questions, answer them and post them, mostly on your website. But what about the other questions that are left unanswered? This is where Facebook Live comes in; you can use it to hold Q&A sessions where the comments section can work as an ‘ask box’. Doctors Without Borders India (Médecins Sans Frontières) frequently goes live with experts answering interview-style questions while also taking questions from the comments; these videos get over 1,000 views.
3. Event Broadcasting
NOGs, especially international NGOs, have more than one branch and often, it’s not possible for people to t ravel to events you hold. Broadcasting such events not only makes your supporters feel welcomed by allowing them to “join in” if they have an internet connection, regardless of where they are in the world, but it also increases your chances of getting more donations.
Whether it is a high-end fundraiser , a talent show, marathon, or a parade, almost any event can be broadcasted life for people who couldn’t make it there. The Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion is known to use the Facebook Live feature to stream events that their volunteers attend.
One thing you should know about your audience, about any audience, is that they love being involved and feeling like they’re a part of the solution. This is why they love giving feedbacks, whether it is on a feedback form you provide, or review sites, or through their social media accounts. If you have a new project that you’re working on, like a new logo or a new initiative, use Facebook Live to take surveys and feedback from your audience; this not only makes them feel involved, but it also gives you more insight into your project. You can also have these live sessions from time to time just to take in your audience’s o pinions.
Making announcements via social media posts is a wildly popular trend for a long time but since the introduction of live videos, these announcements have shifted over to that section for the most part. Giveaways, contest, contest winners, upcoming events, awards, milestones, basically anything that needs to be announced is done so on Live videos.
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Webinars are usually used for educational purposes. You can use this to educate people about your cause and your NGO. You could start by having a webinar of one of your staff members, preferably a professional in their field and move on to inviting experts to talk. You can even have a series where you have a topic and have experts talk about said topic over a conference.
7. Hangout Sessions
A lot of your donors, most of them in fact, are people who have jobs. This means that they rarely have time to sit back and relax. So, you could give them this moment of relaxation through Facebook Live by hosting ‘hangout sessions’. These ‘sessions’ are usually done on YouTube and Instagram where the people just start the live video and chat or do a relaxing play through of a video game and surprisingly, they get quite a lot of views. So pick a weekend, turn on your camera, and simply relax. You could do Q&A sessions, talk about the cause you’re working for, take this chance to listen to your audience’s opinions, the options are endless.
If you have merchandise that you’re planning to sell, a good way to launch it is to do live unboxing instead of grand events. In fact, the young generations prefer unboxing videos because they can watch you showcase and talk about your products from the comfort of their homes instead of dressing up and going out, especially after a long week at work or school.
Running an NGO is very different from running a for-profit business; the rules are different, the audience is different, even the public’s attitude towards you changes. This also means that you will have to get used to new business tools or learn new ways to use the same ones. It’s a daunting change, understandably, which is why most NGOs are reluctant to incorporate live streaming into their strategies. But once you get over that fear and learn to use this tool, you will be able to finally reap its benefits.
Right from raising awareness to raising funds, Facebook live holds a lot of potential for the growth of NGOs. It also gives you the opportunity to interact with your audience in ways that weren’t possible before.
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