Wednesday, April 3, 2013

How to direct traffic to your nonprofit site

 By Tim Meyer

Social media offer new ways of building relationships with one another. People can communicate and build effective relationships with this method. This method is also one of the leading ways to build awareness for nonprofit organizations. Heidi Cohen, Jeff Dunn, and Ross Simmonds give us great inside tips for driving traffic to our blog.

Nonprofit organizations are some of the forerunners when it comes to using social media. Many organizations have started using more social media sites such Facebook, Twitter, Google +, and Linkedin. These sites are able to build to reach out and communicate the cause at hand and get more people involved with the cause.

Making the public aware that there is a cause and they can get involved is crucial today. If people don’t know you exist, they will do nothing to help you out. The best way to get people involved is to first let them know you exist and then secondly, build a relationship through social media.

Using social media to create awareness for your site and for your cause is crucial. Some ways to do this is to post videos about what your nonprofit is up to. Start up a Twitter account and try to create as much positive interaction as possible. The biggest benefit for a nonprofit is creating a blog that keeps the reader coming back for more.

Sometimes the biggest component to creating a blog is trying to let the public know that you have a site to go to visit. How do you create traffic for your blog and site, when people may not know that you exist? Here are a few tips that may help you create traffic for your site.

Create eye-catching headlines. Ross Simmonds brings up a great point in that any readers will pass over an article based on what the heading of it is. Ross gives a great way to avoid this is to create posts that are eye candy. Some ways of doing this could be “10 reasons,” or even “5 easy ways.” This is key in creating something that the reader may be interested in reading.

Use appealing photography. People are attracted to eye candy. Make sure that the photos you use for your blog are attractive so that the viewer will be looking for more on your site. If you choose to show graphs on your site, make sure they pop out to the reader as well. Adding as many wonderful pictures as you can will enhance your blog.

Write comments on other blogs. Heidi Cohen calls this playing well with other bloggers, but sometimes to get the attention of other people, you need to leave a comment that will leave them wanting more. The purpose of this is to grab their attention. Make sure you register in order to receive responses and that you would be able to respond back.

Write great guest posts. A way to create awareness and make long-term and short-term benefits for your blog is to use guest blogging. This can create more traffic to your site than normally would have before. After you write your blog on another site, post a link to your blog and let people head that way.

Invite others to blog. This can be a great way to connect more to the social media network. Understanding that by having guest bloggers, you still need to provide quality content. You’ll have to look over the guest blog before it’s published, but this encourages those who wrote for you to share with others their post and more importantly your site.

Share. Sharing guest posts and installing sharing buttons on your blog is a great way to not only help other bloggers, but watch them help you in return. Many sites have share buttons installed now, which is a great mean to reach out to many more readers as possible. Make sure that the reader is aware of the buttons and encourage them to share as much as possible.

Create posts that hit home. Creating posts that have proper headers and formats. Don’t worry about a certain length and don’t be too short. Whatever you write, make sure that it has a powerful message to it and make sure it is in the proper format.

Update, update, update. Be sure that you are blogging on a consistent basis. There is nothing worse than a blog that hasn’t been updated in a long time. Keep the reader coming back for more by blogging, blogging, and blogging.

Create podcasts. Another way of building traffic is by creating podcasts and talking with experts in your field. Bring on guests and talk about subject material that will get the audience’s attention. This gets the reader to then become a listener on the go and listen more about the cause. The more they keep listening to your podcasts, the more likely it is they will get involved with your cause.

These are great ways to build your social media platform and to let others know that you have a cause worth getting involved with. Many will contribute and keep coming back if you make it something that they can relate to and feel good about. Social media is a great means of doing this and a great way to build relationships without having to go door-to-door. Make sure that you are spending as much necessary time as possible in seeing that your blog is being promoted.

Finally, Jonathan Milligan encourages us to keep blogging. Regardless of how initial feedback may be, it’s a willingness to grow in relationship with other bloggers and be willing to evolve as a blogger. This will continue the growth of your blogging ability and the ability to drive traffic to your blog.


Cohen, Heidi. "Social Media: 23 Ways To Promote Your Blog." Weblog post. Heidi Cohen. N.p., 16 Feb. 2013. Web. 05 Mar. 2013.

Dunn, Jeff. "30 Powerful Ways To Promote Your Blog." Web log post. Edudemic. N.p., 14 Feb. 2013. Web. 29 Mar. 2013.

Hughes, Steven. "4 Reasons Why Twitter Is so Important to Bloggers - The Diigo Meta Page." Weblog post. 4 Reasons Why Twitter Is so Important to Bloggers. N.p., 21 Feb. 2013. Web. 05 Mar. 2013.

Milligan, Jonathan. "3 Mindset Shifts You Need to Make It As a Blogger." Web log post. Blogging Your Passion RSS. N.p., 5 Feb. 2013. Web. 29 Mar. 2013.

Simmonds, Ross. "How to Drive More Traffic to Your Blog than Ever Before." Weblog post. SteamFeed. N.p., 5 Feb. 2013. Web. 05 Mar. 2013.


  1. Thanks for the very informative "how to" on connecting a Nonprofit to the rest of the world through Social Media. It was concise and encouraging. I really appreciate your points about being attractive and friendly/user-friendly. I think the idea of creating a "web" between different sites really rocks! Good job, Nan

    1. Thanks Nan. The whole point of social media is that it should be user friendly and create social networks between people that may have never connected before.

  2. Hi Tim,

    I think you did a great job at outlining the benefits of social media. I like how you encourage the usage of pictures on the website. I think many people are visually oriented.



  3. Thanks for providing some great tips on the possibilities for social media outreach. In our rural area I find a wide disparity between Community Benefit organizations that have adequate paid staff to utilize social media and the many small organizations that don't. None of those organizations use a blog due to the amount of time involved in producing content. How do you see the size of organization, paid staff vs. volunteer, rural vs. urban impacting the use of social media in this sector?

    1. Great question Nancy. I think that regardless the size of an organization, the ones that utilize social media to their advantage are the ones that set themselves apart. Coming from a rural area, it is even more vital that an organization reach beyond its borders and to the universe outside. I don't know if that answers your question or not, but hope it does. Thanks again for the feedback!

  4. You mentioned starting with creating a Twitter account; why did you make this suggestion? Is Twitter the best place for a new nonprofit to begin when considering social media development?

    1. Hey Jessica,
      The reason I brought up Twitter is because that is considered one of the best interaction places between nonprofits and possible donors. While Twitter can be messy at times, it creates some of the best interaction out of all the social media sites.

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