Tiktok for Nonprofits: From Viral Videos to Social Impact
In the dynamic world of social media, TikTok has evolved from its roots in music and dancing videos to become a global sensation, with over three billion downloads worldwide. As leaders in the nonprofit sector, it's essential for us to recognize the tremendous potential this platform holds.
TikTok is not merely a source of entertainment; it's a powerful tool for nonprofits to connect with a vast and engaged audience. The magic of TikTok lies in its ability to make content go viral. It offers unique opportunities for building awareness and raising donations, making it an attractive platform for organizations like ours.
Furthermore, TikTok has become a vibrant community, fostering creativity, meaningful connections, and opportunities for learning. It is shaping a new generation of activists, making it a prime choice for nonprofits looking to expand their reach, fundraise, and create compelling content without the need for advanced technical skills or production capabilities.
Launched in 2016, TikTok surged in popularity in the United States in June 2020 as young people sought entertainment during the pandemic. Today, it boasts a global presence in more than 150 countries, surpassing even Google and its services like Google Maps and Gmail in terms of accessibility. TikTok's popularity now rivals Instagram and is on the verge of overtaking Facebook.
While initially associated with a youthful audience, TikTok has transcended age barriers, captivating adults with its short, visually appealing content, especially videos. This is where our nonprofit organizations can make a significant impact.
Let's explore four essential steps for nonprofits to leverage this influential social media platform:
Immerse Yourself in TikTok's World
Dive into TikTok to observe emerging trends, the creative use of music, and the content that garners the most engagement. TikTok is a platform where people often follow trends, be it dances, music, or audio clips, and adding their unique twist to resonate with their audience. Additionally, voiceovers, where audio clips are overlaid onto videos, are both popular and straightforward to create. Nonprofits like the Catskills Animal Sanctuary, Jacksonville Humane Society, Nashville Humane Association, United Way, and the American Red Cross have effectively used such videos to raise awareness and tell their stories. While TikTok content is relatively easy to produce, investing in basic equipment like dedicated cellphones for video creation and different types of lighting can enhance the quality of your content.
Highlight Impactful Stories and Messages that Drive Donations
As nonprofits begin creating content on TikTok, they should integrate it into their existing social media strategy and communication campaigns. Explore ways to share your TikTok content across multiple platforms. Features like auto-captioning and text-to-speech conversion can make your videos more accessible. Consider creating challenges, providing informative videos, collaborating with marketing partners, and launching fundraising campaigns to leverage TikTok's potential. For example, the Movember Foundation has successfully used TikTok to promote its awareness campaigns, maintaining a consistent message and imagery across all marketing channels.
Explore Fundraising Opportunities
Once your nonprofit has established a following on TikTok, however modest, investigate the platform's fundraising features. TikTok offers donation stickers that can be added to videos and live streams to collect donations. You can also display "Fundraiser" tags, allowing users to link your nonprofit in their profile. To use these features, organizations need to create profiles on platforms like Tiltify and Benevity Causes to ensure that donations reach the right destination.
Engage with Millennials and Gen Z
TikTok's audience is predominantly younger, with over 50% under the age of 34. This demographic, comprising Millennials and Gen Zers, is digitally savvy, socially conscious, and passionate about various causes, including the environment, social justice, animal rights, and freedom of expression. They represent the future wave of donors. Engaging with these generations, particularly through TikTok, is an opportunity to tap into a passionate, tech-savvy, and socially active audience. For example, nonprofits like Diversability, focused on individuals with disabilities, have found success on TikTok by sharing videos created by and for people with different abilities.
These steps are just the beginning for nonprofits looking to harness the power of TikTok. It's clear that TikTok is here to stay, and investing time and effort in this platform can yield significant benefits for organizations like ours. Many nonprofit social media teams are already integrating TikTok into their strategies, alongside platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, to expand their audience, raise awareness, and thrive in the digital age.
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