Estimated reading time: 2 minutes, 42 seconds

instagram-icon 1057-2227As of April of 2017 Instagram has 700 million users. And, a majority of those users are extremely active, often checking the site several times a day. Plus, Instagram’s users are more likely to engage with posts. In fact, engagement on Instagram is better than on any other social network, including Facebook. The average Instagram engagement rate is 50 percent higher than Facebook or Twitter.

Your organization might already have an Instagram account to showcase your organization’s mission, but do you know how to effectively use it to fundraise?

The first step is to make sure your profile is fully filled out and includes a strong call to action and a link to your mobile friendly donation page.  

If your account is not currently an Instagram business account, now is the time to switch it to an

Instagram for Business account. It is free to upgrade to a business account. One of the main reasons to switch to the business account is because it includes tools such as analytics and a contact button.

Instagram is owned by Facebook, so once you set up an Instagram for Business account you are able to link your Facebook Business Page to your Instagram page. Once linked you will be able to seamlessly share Instagram posts with your Facebook page. It also imports all your contact information, which is how you get a nice easy to find contact button on your Instagram profile page.

If you are wondering how to convey your fundraising campaign information via pictures, remember that you can also post infographics to Instagram or photos with text overlays that give all the pertinent information about your campaign.

Additionally, you can use your caption to convey details of your fundraising campaign. Remember, that you have 2,200 characters so use them wisely. For maximum impact you can change the link in your bio to reflect a specific URL for each campaign you run.

Don’t forget to include hashtags on every post. Hashtags are searchable and are how Instagrammers will discover your organization.

Research indicates that posts with more than 11 hashtags get the most engagement. Also, with each post use #yourorganization. During events encourage your supporters to post to Instagram using your organization’s specific hashtag.

You can also tag each campaign with a specific hashtag. Remember the success of the the #ALSicebucketchallenge?

Along with using hashtags, it is important to tag people in your photos. Tagging helps to increase post engagement, overall tagging can lead to a 50% increase in post engagement.

Another way to fundraise via Instagram is to make use of Instagram’s live feature. This feature allows you to upload a video (which is only available for 24hrs before disappearing). In your video you can make a live call to action.

Use Instagram to build a buzz for your next event by posting teasers. Change your profile link to direct people to the event registration page. During live event you can post photos of your event that include a special hashtag for the donation campaign, and encourage the attendees to do the same.

You can also post graphics that show the campaign’s progress. If you have peer to peer fundraising encourage your donors to use #yourorganization and #yourcampaign when posting their pictures.
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