I just returned from the Nonprofit Technology Conference (#12NTC) hosted by NTEN in San Francisco, CA. Holly and the rest of the NTEN team (including all the volunteers) did an incredible job inspiring of over 1800 people for three days. The conference was amazing!
While we were there, Blackbaud, NTEN and Common Knowledge released the 2012 Nonprofit Social Networking Benchmark Report.
As social media, marketing and communications, and fundraising types continue to download and read the report we’re seeing more interest in the value nonprofits are placing on a Facebook Like (i.e. Facebook Fan or Supporter).
It’s a great conversation to start having because assigning real value to nonprofit Facebook fans is something that nonprofits, in general, haven’t figured out (yet).
To make sure we’re all working on this challenge from the same place let’s call out two very important pieces of information from the report:
- The value of a Facebook Like/Supporter is self-reported from nonprofit survey respondents.
- The average value is being calculated based off of total revenue received from a supporter over the 12 months following acquisition.
What this Means for Your Nonprofit
At the end of the day, calculating the real value of a Facebook Like or Twitter Follower is tough. Some even say that the inherent value of a Facebook Like is ZERO.
There are a lot of variables to consider and it’s not the same as calculating the value of an email address. Here are a few things to think about.
- A Facebook fan’s value is not the same as the cost of that fan’s acquisition.
- A Facebook fan’s value is relative to his or her purchasing habits (and/or influence on others’ purchasing habits).
- Each Facebook fan’s value is unique.
- A Facebook fan’s value is likely to be elastic.
- A Facebook fan’s value varies from brand to brand.
What to do Next?
My suggestion. Go read this article by Olivier Blanchard > The 5 Basic Rules of Calculating Fan (or follower) Value
Start thinking seriously about how you should be tracking and measuring your social media efforts so that next year when we ask you about the value of a Facebook Like you’ll be able to answer with confidence.
Don’t forget to download the complete 2012 Nonprofit Social Networking Benchmark Report. The detail behind these numbers can be found in the report as well as the methodology used.