10 things you should never do to your fans and followers

Please do not:

  1. Juggle your followers between social networks. Don't post half-finished sentences on Twitter and force someone to go to Facebook to finish reading. (It is okay to link to a photo or photo album on another network when necessary, as long as that context is given in the post.)
  2. Act like a robot. If your tweets sound like a press release headline...stop. (If you're actually tweeting links to press releases...stop NOW.) Likewise, don't post the exact same content/phrasing on every single social network at once.
  3. Require way too much information on a contest-entry form. Keep it under five fields, please. Fewer is better.
  4. Constantly ask for donations on social media. The more you ask...the less effective those requests will be.
  5. Constantly beg for votes in fundraising competitions. If you must engage in vote-driven contests, stick to one per year. And try to mix up your content during that time, so it's not 100% vote-begging.
  6. Relegate social media to short-term staff. Whoever runs your social media campaigns should be someone deeply invested in the organization, who won't be leaving in three months.
  7. Write super long blog posts. Keep it to under 1200 words. Fewer is much better. (Personally, I shoot for 350-500.) Remember, you can always break it up into multiple posts if you need to.
  8. Use insider jargon. Though your followers may be passionate about your subject, they may not know all the insider lingo...and using such terms may alienate people who are just learning about your cause.
  9. Beg celebrities to retweet you. Unless that celebrity has demonstrated an interest in your cause, it's not worth the time to ask them to retweet your post. You have influencers within your existing circle, and your efforts are much better spent cultivating a relationship with them.
  10. Try to make awkward conversation. If your entire week has been spent posting serious news about your cause, don't suddenly jump in with, "Anyone have big plans this weekend?" or "Who do you hope wins the Super Bowl?" Those aren't conversations one really wants to have with a nonprofit organization.

Got anything to add? Post 'em in the comments!