Have you ever bought something based on a friend’s recommendation? Or based on all the positive reviews you read on the ecommerce site? This is the prevailing trend in the marketplace for retailers (70% of shoppers say they look at user reviews) and B2B companies.

In fact, it works so well at increasing sales that many companies have systems or processes in place to encourage reviews. And to encourage sharing reviews with their networks via social media.

So if this behavior is so prevalent everywhere else in our lives, why not put it to work helping your nonprofit acquire more donors and members? And use it to ultimately help you raise more revenue?

How might you do this?

Facebook Timeline app: Dedicate one of your apps to collecting reviews from donors and members. Encourage them to write a few words about their experience with your nonprofit. Ask specific questions so you get a variety of responses. For example:

What part of the work you help make possible holds the greatest meaning for you? [And then cite some of the different types of work you do. Don’t expect them to remember everything.]

Did we say “thank you” for your donation as quickly as you expected? Any suggestions for improving how we acknowledge your generosity?

How long have you been a member? And what is it that we do for you and/or our industry that means the most to you? In other words, what’s the main reason you renew your membership each year?

And if someone comments on your main page, copy the review over to your “review app” section. This makes it easy for new supporters to find and read all the reviews.

You could even offer an incentive to those who share reviews with their friends. Use an incentive sharing widget and for every 3 friends that become donors, you get _______. What you fill in the blank depends on your nonprofit and its mission.

I’m not suggesting you pay them anything. Consider a special recognition club where they collect virtual badges to demonstrate the depth of their support for your cause.

Now if you’re strictly a local nonprofit, you could also invite them on a tour of your facilities. Include something that isn’t normally shared with the public so they feel special.

Again, have a place on Facebook and on your website where you recognize these grass roots champions of your cause.

Website: And you’ll also want to make it easy for donors and members to post reviews on your website – definitely have reviews here. Put your incentivized social media sharing widget on your website too.

Add an obvious and easily understand navigation link so all visitors can easily find your collection of reviews. Track the number of donations that come from links off of this page to help measure the power of these reviews.

From all this you’ll be able to build a database of your top influential donors or members. And then in the future you can target them with other social opportunities. Of course you’ll also target them with extra cultivation and stewardship.

Wrapping up: There are people who are passionate about what you do. Give them a voice. Give them an easy way to tell you – and their friends – what they like and why they stick with you. Acquire more donors and members through grass roots reviews of your work. How’s that for a great ROI from social media?

Related posts:

Boost nonprofit multi-channel marketing with donor reviews

Nonprofit loyalty program

Exceptional nonprofit customer service

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