Digital Manager at Time to Change . Seb is the Digital Manager for Time to Change, a campaign to change the way people think and act about mental health. He leads on web content, social media and digital innovation.
6 minute read
The Time to Change campaign is thriving on social media. We spoke to their Digital Manager, Seb Baird to get his tips on how charities create great social content.
Since creating the Time to Change campaign back in 2007, social media has become integral to our lives, with 83% of the population now active on one or more social media platform.
Over the years we’ve built a following of more than 700,000 across different platforms: and many of them rely on social media to talk about mental health. We are active across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Each has its strengths and weaknesses and we tailor our content for each platform’s respective audience.
Hands down the best content is story driven. My team and I solicit, edit and publish three or four blogs per week as the core of our social media content. We find that personal, human content always resonates more with our audience. Of course, not all charities can have someone solely dedicated to social media. Luckily there are a couple of shortcuts and techniques to ensure you’re maximising your output.
1. Invest and trust in your community
Get people who are passionate about your cause to create content for you, whether that means blogs, photography or video. It will perform well, because it’s a human perspective and it will reduce the burden on staff to create lots of content.
Here are a few ways you can do this:
Hand over the reins of your Instagram account to a supporter or staff member to do an Instagram story takeover
Ask your supporters to make short video clips sharing their story that you can badge up and put out on your social channels
Ask your supporters to write blogs or short written pieces on a particular theme.
We’ve also noticed that our audience seem to really like engaging with and sharing substantive tips, like how to support a mate or how to start a conversation about mental health. Consequently, we ensure that all our platforms are fully adapted to facilitate audience sharing.
2. You can push other peoples’ content
Just hit the ‘share’ button. In our social media plan, we have a ‘content pyramid’ that details the kind of content we post, and how frequently/ broadly we post it. Personal stories are the bedrock of our output but we’ll also post other things, such as:
External editorial content: news publishers like the Guardian and Metro produce a lot of content that’s relevant for us, which we’ll share a few times per week
Engaging with topical discussions: we look at the trending topics and post something when it’s relevant to our messages
Try new things and pay attention to what works. We do a 30-minute weekly review within our team to assess the performance of the last week’s content; it helps us stay sharp and assess trends.
4. Buy a design software licence for your Social Media team
It costs £250/year but it’s worth its weight in gold. Our team are self-taught Adobe Illustrator users and itaffords us a great deal offlexibility in being able to create our own graphics.
Try to create graphics that are ‘evergreen’ –meaning they won’t go out of date and can be reused for future campaigns. If your budget won’t stretch to that there are free tools like Canva that you can use instead. You can find all sorts of low-cost and no-cost tools on Hackastory’s tools directory.
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