It’s been a while since I posted to this blog. If you’ll allow me to make excuses, I do think I have a couple of good ones. I’ve been madly working to finish my master’s degree at Johns Hopkins in digital communication while working full time. On top of it all, I’m currently 35 weeks pregnant! I’m now in the final stages of two of these three all-consuming activities (being pregnant and completing my master’s) and I’m hoping I can get your help on the latter. (If you want to help me with my pregnancy, donations of caramel apples are warmly welcomed…that’s all I crave these days.)
Over the next several weeks I will be writing a thesis on social networking fundraising strategies. I’ll conduct several focus groups with people who are plugged into social networks like Facebook and Twitter.
Yes, I’m looking at YOU.
I want to know what makes donors feel motivated to give to social causes of all sorts, and when, if ever, that motivation has started with a recommendation from a connection online.
For all you academics, my working research question is: What factors motivate people to donate to a charity through social media?
But before I even start recruiting for my focus groups, I’d love your help.
Do you think traditional best practices in fundraising apply to social media?
We know that organizations such as Charity:Water have been able to use networking on Facebook and YouTube to raise millions. The Red Cross credits their outreach on Twitter and other key social media networks to bring in $5 million in donations via text message following the earthquake in Haiti.
But what makes these effective appeals different from traditional fundraising? Anything?
Do you interact differently with charities because of social networking? If you see a friend’s recommendation for you to “like” a non-profit on Facebook, what makes you want to click?
In sum, does social media push you any closer to clicking that famous “DonateNow” button? And why?
Ok, now your turn. Let me have it…