In a post for NPR’s All Tech Considered, Alina Selyukh takes a look at why social media, and more specifically Facebook, may not be very effective for fundraising, an opinion we share, if all the nonprofit does is add a donate button to their profile. However, the full article features a link to a Red Cross survey that helps illustrate the point we make in our Nonprofit Insider Outlook below that Facebook does work for nonprofit fundraising on social media. Ms. Selyukh is a reporter for All Tech Considered at NPR and was previously a correspondent and reporter at Thomson Reuters, a reporter/producer/videographer at ABC News and a journalist at National Journal.

A Click Too Far: Why Using Social Media Isn’t That Great For Fundraising

nonprofit fundraising on social media

By Alina Selyukh | NPR | 12/2/15

You couldn’t look anywhere on Facebook without seeing it: friends, celebrities and complete strangers dumping buckets of ice water to raise awareness of ALS, a neurodegenerative illness also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

The 2014 Ice Bucket Challenge ended up raising more than $115 million for ALS research and reached an unprecedented bar for a charity social media campaign — unprecedented and inimitable.

This week, the Web phenomenon of #GivingTuesday has launched us into the fundraising peak of 2015 (aka the tail end of the tax year) and with it, you’re bound to see some social media fundraising call-outs. But it turns out that while Facebook and other social media sites can be good at putting issues on your radar, they are pretty ineffective at getting people to click away and actually donate.

nonprofit fundraising on social media

We Don’t Agree – Facebook Does Work For Nonprofit Fundraising On Social Media

Contrary to Ms. Selyukh’s opinion, we believe, because we’ve seen it firsthand, that Facebook does work for nonprofit fundraising on social media, but only if you do more than just add a Donate button to your profile. The key to making the world’s most popular social media platform work for your organization is to consistently use it to engage and influence your audience, not just ask for contributions.


56% of people donate to a nonprofit because they read a story via social media so make sure you are posting relevant and captivating stories, images or video.  Another way to create ongoing engagement that can translate into donations is to ask supporters to sign a petition or make a pledge from a link to a mobile-friendly form that you post along with a compelling image and caption.


You can keep supporters who respond to your Facebook surveys, petitions and pledges interested and engaged with regular updates you can post with a keyword and shortlink call-to-action. Updates can also be sent directly to respondents via text messaging.


One of they easiest ways to ensure that Facebook does work for nonprofit fundraising on social media is to include photos and videos in your posts to increase engagement by 200%.


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