A survey of 76 of the United States’ largest charities suggests that over one-third of them have embraced blogging as a way of informing and engaging with current and potential donors, and three in four use at least one form of social networking tool.
The University of Massachusetts study also found that nearly half of the charities surveyed thought that social media was a very important part of their fundraising strategy.
The university’s previous research into the blogging habits of Fortune 500 and Inc. 500 companies found that only 8% and 19% respectively were engaged in any official form of blogging — though it should be borne in mind that the dates of this research weren’t published in the article.
The university’s report noted that, “this research proves conclusively that charitable organizations are outpacing the business world in their use of social media.”
Charities surveyed said that their blogs were most often written by in-house PR or communications staff, and that their success was measured by basic statistics such as site hits or comments left, rather than money raised.
Around half said that their blogs were available via RSS feed. This either means that the other half are using proprietary content management software without a feed option, that they’ve deliberately or inadvertently removed feed functionality, or they’re just not aware that their blog is available as a feed.
The report, “Blogging for the Hearts of Donors: Largest U.S. Charities Use Social Media.”, surveyed charities including the Salvation Army, American Red Cross, Catholic Charities USA, Habitat for Humanity International and Easter Seals, and the full results of the survey are expected to be published next year.
(Via Computer World)