Instagram isn’t just a platform for brands and influencers to sell their products and/or services. It’s also a platform where individuals and organizations can participate in social media social activism to raise awareness and funds for various causes. Over the years, many non-profits have managed to raise money through donations on Instagram, and if you want to do the same, you’re at the right place.
In this article, we’ll give you all the information you need to use Instagram for running donation drives and campaigns. So, read on.
1. Plan out your Instagram fundraising campaign
Even though Instagram can be an incredibly potent platform for fundraising, the fact is that you can’t start raising funds without a concrete plan in place. So, before anything else, plan your campaign. Ideally, the following objectives should be included in your campaign plan:
- The title of your fundraising campaign
- Campaign length, i.e. for how long will the campaign last
- A campaign hashtag that you can use across the social media landscape for spreading the word
- A landing page that will give interested donors all the relevant details about the campaign
- A campaign content calendar along with draft content
- Social media management tools for advanced post-scheduling
- How you’ll track and measure the results of the campaign
- Once these things are thoroughly chalked out, it’s time to start taking action on Instagram.
2. Upgrade from a personal profile to a business profile
There are many individuals who have raised funds for various causes through their personal profiles on Instagram. While that certainly is an option you can consider, we recommend upgrading your profile from a personal profile to a business profile. Why? Because with a business profile, your campaign will appear more professional, and you can rope in more donors.
When upgrading to a business profile, it’s important to include the link to your campaign’s landing page within the bio. Once the landing page’s link is included in the bio, you can direct users to visit it whenever you share a post related to your campaign. Also, during the business profile setup process, include as much information as you can regarding your fundraising campaign. This is to ensure that interested people and businesses don’t have any lingering questions as to what purpose your fundraiser serves. Quite simply, the answers should be out there for everyone to see.
3. Add Instagram Donate Button and Stories Donation Sticker
Since fundraising on Instagram has become something of a trend, the folks at Instagram have decided to make it easier for people running donation campaigns. As a result, you have the Donate button and the Stories Donation stickers, which allow prospective donors to contribute to any social cause without leaving Instagram. It’s vital that you add these buttons and stickers to your Instagram business profile. Here’s how you can do it:
- First, link the business account with the verified Facebook page (if your campaign doesn’t have a Facebook page, get it done and dusted now!)
- Next, go to your Instagram settings and go to the Business page, where you should see the ‘Donation’ option – tap on it
- Here, you’ll see the ‘Add Donate Button to Profile’ option – tap on it and you’ll have successfully added the Donate button
- For adding the Stories Donation Sticker, you have to open the campaign’s verified Facebook account
- Go to the Publishing Tools page – you can find it in the upper section of the
- Facebook homepage
- Here, choose Donation Settings, following which you should see an option called ‘Allow people to add donation stickers to Instagram Stories’ with a box beside it – check the box
- Click on Save to save the changes, and you’re done – now you’ve added both the Instagram Donate button and Stories Donation Stickers
It’s important to remember that for using these donation button and sticker features, your organization must be registered as a U.S. nonprofit under the 501(c)(3) clause. If it’s not, you won’t be able to add these features to your Instagram business account. So, if your nonprofit is based outside the US, unfortunately, you can’t use these features yet. Hopefully, Instagram will tweak things in the future so that nonprofits outside the US can benefit from these features as well.
However, even if you can’t make the most of these features just because your organization is not US-based, you can still do a lot to raise funds through your Instagram account.
4. Perfect your hashtag use
Your fundraising campaign won’t be able to raise enough money if people don’t know about it, right? This is where hashtag use can come into the picture and spread awareness about your campaign through your social activism posts. On Instagram, hashtags play a pivotal role in making posts more discoverable, so you simply can’t afford to ignore them. Some of the most popular hashtags that almost every fundraising campaign uses on Instagram include:
Before you start using hashtags across all your Instagram posts for raising awareness about your campaign, you need to keep certain things in mind. For starters, you should use only the hashtags that are relevant to your posts. Sometimes, you may feel tempted to use trending hashtags just to get noticed. However, the fact is that if those hashtags aren’t relevant, Instagram’s moderators will treat your posts as spam content. If you keep posting content with irrelevant hashtags, your account may get shadow banned, i.e. your content will be blocked and the worst part is that you won’t even know it’s happening.
Also, you should keep a check on how many hashtags you’re using per post. Officially, Instagram allows users to include up to 30 hashtags in each post. However, just because Instagram’s giving you that option doesn’t mean that you have to take it. Ideally, you should use up to 10 hashtags and no more.
5. Include call-to-action (CTA) messages wherever possible
It’s strange how simple CTA messages can be the difference between people taking action on Instagram and people ignoring posts altogether. However, as strange as it is, the fact is that it’s real. Without CTA messages, your posts will be forgotten faster than you can blink. So, include them across every post you share.
One of the CTA messages that you must include during the early stages of your campaign is ‘Share this post.’ People who support the cause on an emotional level will be encouraged to share, which will increase campaign awareness through more Instagram shares. This can work alongside your hashtag campaign to ensure an even greater reach for your campaign.
6. Use text and imagery to move people
Your cause may be great – something that people should support. However, for people to feel like they should support your cause, they need to feel moved. This is where it’s important to remember that Instagram is a platform that people mostly turn to when they’re on the move. Typically, when Instagram followers engage with content, they’re also doing something else, i.e. multitasking. That’s why it’s vital to draw their attention to your cause through the use of high-quality text and imagery.
Apart from drawing people’s attention to your fundraising campaign, you also need to move them on an emotional level. After all, if they don’t feel your cause tugging at their heartstrings, would they feel motivated to contribute to it? No, right? So, craft your campaign content carefully. Tell stories that touch people on an emotional level, and that’s when they’ll feel the motivation within them to contribute.
7. Express gratitude towards donors
It’s not enough to simply motivate donors with captivating stories and images. Once they’ve donated, you need to make them feel like they’ve done something important by contributing to your cause. Also, you should express your thankfulness towards them, because quite simply, fundraising campaigns amount to nothing without their donors.
This is where you can make the most of appreciation posts. Include the names of all the people who’ve donated so far and appreciate their efforts in supporting a cause to make the world a better place. Such posts don’t just make the donors feel good about what they’ve done, but also encourage other people to come forward and play an active role in ensuring social justice.
8. Keep sharing milestones
As your campaign raises more and more funds, it’s important that you showcase its success in front of your audiences. You can do this through regular feed posts, Stories posts, Reels posts, and more. The point of this exercise is to rope in even more potential donors. It works because, by nature, human beings are inclined to participate in successful things.
So, these were some of the best ways for running donation drives and campaigns using Instagram. We hope you found this article helpful, and we wish you all the best in your fundraising efforts.
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