The who, what, where, when and why of photos on social media.

What are we talking about?
Increasing social media engagement with photos.

Who is doing this extremely well? 
The Humane Society is really taking their photo sharing to new heights. The organization is consistently posting photos on the most popular social media platforms in the U.S.: Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. They are also engaging with their users by replying to comments with enthusiasm and more information about getting involved with the organization. Another fun instance when the organization initiated engagement was on National Dog Day. Their audience was asked to share personal photos of their dogs and the response was tremendous and fun for both the organization and followers online.

Why does it matter?
Time decay on social media is FAST, especially when your posts aren’t receiving engagement. Posts by people, news outlets, companies and more overwhelm your newsfeed making it harder to catch attention. Nonprofits trying to recruit and retain constituents should approach social media like they would a competitive sport. Likes, comments, shares, retweets and favorites earn points and photos score the most.
When sharing information on social media, it is important to post simple, eye-catching content targeting the intended audience. Why? Because a photo is the fastest and easiest way to digest information… and it looks good, too! Photos get your audience interested and engaged.

Where should I start on execution?
There’s a story to tell behind every face and every place. Your organization has a cause and behind any cause is a story that can be shared through photos. Adding a personal attribute through photos lures people in and gives them something or someone to relate to. It’s important to keep it social.  Create a plan for messaging, the type of information you want to share and the frequency at which you’d like to share and engage. If you have a designer to help, even better! This photo posted to The Humane Society’s Instagram account is a great example of how strong design and messaging can be used on social media. It’s eye-catching and encourages engagement from their followers.

How can I learn more?
Though the area is still new and developing, the numbers don’t lie. It’s no wonder brands are doing so well on Instagram.
Your nonprofit has the tools, now what do you do? Learn from the best to build your nonprofit’s brand through photo sharing. Here are some articles to help you plan your posts effectively .

The minimalist’s guide to boosting brands’ Instagram engagement – The Next Web
Your Organic Reach on Facebook is Down, Now What? – Charity Dynamics
What ‘Humans of New York’ Can Teach You About End of Year Fundraising –npENGAGE