According to the 2015 CASE Social Media and Community Conference, colleges are turning to social media strategies to boost fundraising results.
A CASE/Huron/mStoner social media survey reports that 57 percent of respondents used social media to fundraise in 2015, a ten percent increase from last year.
Fifty-nine percent of survey respondents said they were “experimenting” with new social media fundraising strategies.
In a previous statement, William Walker said social media is becoming a prominent and necessary tool for those who work in higher education.
“We’re seeing a steady growth in the use of social media by practitioners who work in educational advancement, especially fundraising and alumni relations, who see these tools as increasingly important to their work,” said Walker, the interim vice president of advancement resources for CASE.
The CASE/Huron/mStoner report featured other findings, including:
• Institutions are using less text and more images and video. Text decreased from 65 percent in 2012 to 43 percent in 2015 while images grew from 30 percent in 2012 to 45 percent in 2015 and video use increased from 6 percent in 2012 to 12 percent in 2015.
• While nearly 60 percent used social media to raise money from donors, nearly 85 percent of those surveyed indicate that social-media-based fundraising represents 5 percent or less of their institution’s total.
• Fifteen percent of institutions have held crowdfunding campaigns, and of these, 50 percent earned more than $10,000 per year.
• Forty-two percent of institutions have held a day of giving. Of these, 84 percent considered the event to be successful with 37 percent raising more than $50,000.
• Twenty-two percent of institutions use social media ambassadors—often alumni—who are recruited to help promote social media initiatives.
• Twenty-six percent of respondents rate their use of social media as very successful or a model for success. These same respondents are more likely to plan, have goals and measure outcomes.
• Respondents are focusing their attention on Facebook, Twitter and institutional websites that aggregate social media.
• Thirty-four percent of respondents calculate engagement scores for alumni and donors and indicate that they are focused on building sophisticated ways of measuring engagement.
Senior Managing Researcher Jennifer Mack said colleges should measure their social media-based fundraising so they can document their return on investment.
“Survey results indicate a trend toward measuring what is effective,” Mack said in a previous statement. “However, there is still more opportunity for growth in this area as the majority of institutions surveyed use number of followers, website click-throughs and anecdotal evidence as their top forms of measurement.”
For more information on top-line findings regarding social media fund raising, click here.