A well-crafted annual report can be a powerful vehicle for sharing your message and accomplishments. Once finished, organizations often step back and strategize how to convert the full-breath of the report into engaging social posts. But what if you approach the annual report from a social media-first perspective at the very outset?
It's common knowledge that attention spans are getting shorter. We're bombarded by news, videos, and images every day, every where. It's estimated that Generation Z's attention span clocks in at roughly eight seconds, with 98 percent of them owning a smartphone. A report from Deloitte, the average American consumer now checks their phone 52 times per day.
That means your audiences are likely interacting with your annual report in ways you never planned for. Taking a social media-first perspective will do more than make your social media manager happy, it'll bring in more readers and drive fresh traffic to last year's content, keeping key stakeholders engaged throughout the year.
As you approach the year's end, take an inventory of all your blog posts, stories, photos, press releases and other materials over the past year. As you sort through it all, think about which stories qualify as the most compelling and keep in mind where you can utilize dynamic visuals. As you keep a social-first focus, consider using the following strategies to highlight the necessary facts, figures and images while opening the door to greater interest (and engagement):
Less Text, More Context
With many annual reports, there's a tendency to create drafty long stories and standard letters from the leaders. With a social media-first perspective, consider where you can use visuals instead of text--and gather together facts, figures, images and examples that can demonstrate your work and vision in a more succinct way.
Nonprofit Annual Report Example - Taking a Social Media-First Approach
For example, in developing last year's annual report for Food 4 Farmers, we spread a conventional story arc across three pieces:
The Pieces of a Story
When you build your story with different elements rather than a self-contained narrative, you'll make it easier to break your annual report down into posts that you can share over weeks and months as you roll it out.
In any of the narratives we used for Food 4 Farmers, we gathered common elements that easily convert into social media posts:
Extra Credit Considerations
For those of you eager to go above and beyond this year, we've got two more tips to share:
For ideas on boosting your content planning strategy, check out our Same-Page Content Planning Case Study. And if you're looking for help promoting your Annual Report or other accomplishments on social, we offer Social Media Management for nonprofits of any size.
This guest post from Nate Holmes at Widen has practical tips for keeping your images and videos organized when you are managing a social media program. We love to share advice that helps teams work better together.
Do you ever find yourself rummaging through folders on your desktop to find the perfect image to share on social media? Or maybe you’ve given up on finding the perfect image and any remotely relevant image will do. Clicking in and out of folders and emailing your co-workers for that one image isn’t the best use of your time. So get ahead of the clutter and save yourself some time but getting your visuals organized.
Here’s how to keep your visuals organized so your posts are on-brand, on-message, and on time.
Put Your Images in a Centralized Place
Centralize Your Images: When you need an image or video for social media where do you go? If you’re listing off a half-dozen places or you don’t know, it’s time to centralize your visuals. It’s the first step in getting organized. You might have multiple sources for images, but they should all end up organized in the same place.
Things to consider:
Use Descriptive Filenames
Use Descriptive Filenames: When you’re looking for an image, staring at a list of IMG_3091, IMG_3092, IMG_3093, etc. is not helpful. Take advantage of filenames by including descriptive information about the file’s content. A good filename helps distinguish itself from other files. Consider including the event, project, theme, or creator in the filename.
Things to consider:
Categorize Your Images and Videos
Categorize Your Images and Videos: Filenames can help you search for a specific file, but categories are especially helpful when you have an idea of what you want but not a specific file in mind. The goal of organizing your files into categories is to make it easy to drill down to what you want in an organic, logical, and easy-to-understand manner.
Things to consider:
Remove Off-Brand Visuals
Remove off-brand visuals: One of the key benefits of social media is its ability to connect your brand to customers. Any post may be your opportunity to attract a potential customer to your brand. So your visuals better be on-brand.
When organizing your visuals, remove any off-brand visuals, including those that are off-brand due to poor quality. Your visuals should reinforce your brand, not distract from it.
Things to consider:
Keywords and Descriptions Metadata
Keyword and description metadata: Metadata is data about data. It’s descriptive information that defines and describes your visual. If you apply this information to your files, you can use it to organize and find files faster. A digital asset management (DAM) system gives you more robust search and filtering capabilities than a basic folder structure.
Things to consider:
It’s tempting to put off organizing any newly created or purchased images and videos. Don’t wait! There’s never a great time for more mundane tasks like organizing your visuals, but a little time invested now will save you more time later. Like when you need that visual again.
This Facebook page like hack is free, quick and easy to try, and greatly increases the likelihood that a person who has engaged with your content will become a fan of your page, giving you the ability to reach that engaged person over time.
Take a Closer Look at Boosted Posts
We’re going to start by talking about boosted posts. Boosting posts on Facebook is a great way to get your content in front of targeted audiences and to build engagement for your business’s Facebook page. Sometimes we use boosts to reach current fans of the page, but sometimes we use them to grow new audiences.
But getting a post in front of the right person, doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re going to become of a fan of your page. That’s also true when your current fans share a post that’s relevant to them with their friends.
Here’s a quick and easy action that we can take to solve that problem.
Step One: Make Sure You’re an Admin of Your Facebook Business Page
This hack won’t work for people who have other permissions on the page, including Editors. If you manage your Facebook page through Facebook Business Manager, make sure that you’re in Business Manager before you try this.
Step Two: Offer a Friendly "Hello!"
When you see that someone has liked one of your Facebook posts, click on the area highlighted below, where you see Facebook reactions (likes, hearts, etc.)
This is what you see when you click on that area: a window that lists all of the people who reacted to your post. You’ll also see whether or not those people are currently fans of your page.
Simply click the “Invite” button to ask them if they’d like to become a fan of your page.
Not everyone that you invite to like your page will become a fan, and that’s okay. The role of a good social media manager is to keep the conversation going, to stretch out a friendly hand when someone needs assistance, and to offer a friendly "hello".
Since these readers have already expressed an interest in what you’re sharing online, there’s nothing to lose in inviting them to join your community.
This action only takes a few minutes and is pretty easy to do, so why not give it a try and see if it increases the number of page likes you get this week?