Endangered Species Fundraising: Increasing Donations Through the Effective Use of Social Media

The Critical Role of Fundraising in Endangered Species Conservation

Approximately one million animal and plant species are at risk of extinction, many within the next decade. Biodiversity is being lost at a faster pace today than at any point in human history. Conservation is crucial to protect these species, to preserve the natural world and the ecosystems we all depend upon.

Despite the pressing importance of endangered species conservation, most conservation initiatives are partly or fully funded by donors. Protecting the natural world wouldn’t be possible without fundraising, yet conservation fundraising can be challenging. The following factors play their part: 

  • The cost of living crisis. People are tightening their belts in the face of rising prices, and charitable donations are falling.
  • Competition from other causes. Conservation charities are competing with other organisations for limited funding.
  • Lack of public awareness. Although the public are aware that species are at risk, they may not understand how important it is to conserve them. Especially when other issues can seem more urgent and more directly linked to human welfare, like cancer research or mental health care.

Although conservation fundraising faces hurdles, with the effective use of social media, your organisation can establish and maintain a steady stream of donations that are sufficient to support your conservation efforts.

Using Social Media Effectively for Conservation Fundraising

Social media can dramatically increase earnings from fundraising if used effectively. It can boost your organisation’s reach, transforming even a small organisation into a global one. By using social media in the right way, you can engage and inspire people. This enables you to build a large audience and can even provide ways for supporters to donate to you. 

However, using social media effectively is a skill that needs to be learned. You need to approach it with thought and a clear strategy to make sure posts stand out. If you do so, you can boost engagement and potentially secure donations. To use social media with impact, try to:

Choose your Social Media Platforms Wisely

There are a lot of social media platforms out there. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and TikTok are the largest in the UK, while YouTube and WhatsApp are increasingly being seen as valuable social media platforms. Others, like LinkedIn, can help you reach different audiences.

But rather than attempting to use all the platforms available to you, your organisation will reap bigger donations if you focus on a limited number and use them effectively. 

Focus on social media platforms that:

  • Your target audiences are active on. Each platform tends to skew towards certain demographics. Pick the platforms where your target supporters are found.
  • Your organisation has the resources and capabilities to use effectively. For instance, if you have a wealth of video media, YouTube or TikTok may be good choices. If you have a database of photos, those can be used to good effect on Instagram. If people in your organisation already use social media platforms successfully, seek to leverage their skills and experience.

Create Compelling Content

Easier said than done, we know. And while there’s a certain degree of intuitive understanding that comes with using social media well, you can improve your impact through taking a number of simple steps:

  • Make visuals the centrepiece of your posting, rather than words. Aim to use eye-catching images, videos and infographics in your posts. With endangered species as your conservation focus, you have a wealth of stunning subjects to share online. Sites like National Geographic’s Photo Ark are a great source of inspiration. 
  • Aim to tell stories with your social media posting, as they are a powerful way to capture attention and inspire action. Keep it simple. Begin with a challenge, then show how your organisation has overcome it, and how people can help with similar issues by donating to you.
  • Research other successful charitable organisations. Follow other conservation charities and other causes, and pay attention to what works well for them. Take inspiration from their successful posts for your own.

Adopt a Distinctive Voice for Your Organisation

Develop a characteristic voice for your organisation that’s applied to all posts consistently. A distinctive voice will help present a personality for your organisation, helping your posts stand out and making them more relatable and more likely to be engaged with. 

Decide on a tone for the language you use, whether that’s serious and informative, casual, funny or thoughtful. If multiple people use your organisation’s social media accounts, develop a clear style guide that demonstrates examples of your chosen voice and gives guidance on how to apply it.

Include Links in Your Account and Posts

Most social media platforms allow you to add links to your posts. Use that feature to add a link to each post to direct traffic back to a desired site, such as to your homepage to find out more, or to an online donation platform, depending on the purpose of each post. If you’re seeking donations, it’s usually more effective to link directly to a page where people can donate, rather than to an intermediary page and risk losing some of your traffic before people donate.

Use Hashtags and React to Trending Topics

Research and use relevant conservation-related hashtags to increase the visibility of your social media posts. Stick to using one or two hashtags, rather than many, to avoid diluting your message.

Join in and comment on appropriate trending topics too, and use their trending hashtags. This will help you engage with a wider audience on conservation, environmental and welfare issues as they happen, and at the peak of their popularity. 

Take Advantage of Donation Features

Some social media networks allow you to add donation features directly to posts, such as Facebook and Instagram’s donate buttons. Try and use these wherever possible, to make donating to you as easy as it can be. It should be as simple as just a click from a social media post. The simpler you can make it to donate to your cause, the more likely people will be to do so. 

Interact with Your Audience

Rather than passively posting, engage with your audience. Respond promptly and politely to comments and messages. Encourage discussion, ask questions, and invite supporters to share their experiences and ideas. 

By responding to and building connections with your followers, you can foster a sense of community. Your supporters will feel more engaged. They will be more likely to reply and share your posts, and to donate to your organisation. 

Join Online Communities

As well as interacting with your supporters, follow other conservation causes and other relevant organisations, influencers, and celebrities. Make sure you respond to and share their posts and join in with conversations, becoming an active voice in groups. Those accounts will be more likely to engage and share your content too, increasing the reach and impact of your posts.

Pay Attention to Your Analytics

Social media platforms provide you with a range of analytics you can track. This includes the number of followers you have, how many people have seen a post, how many have liked and shared it, how many have clicked on links, and more.

Monitor your analytics to better understand what works well for you and what doesn’t, so you can refine your posting to make it more effective over time. Also be aware that what works well may only do so for a certain period of time. You’ll therefore need to continually analyse your social media analytics and adapt your posting to ensure your content stays effective.

Find out More About How easyfundraising can Help you Raise Funds for your Organisation

We’re passionate about fundraising at easyfundraising. We’ve already helped raise more than £45 million for charitable cases since 2005. As well as helping with your social media fundraising, we can provide you with a platform you can promote to receive donations.

With easyfundraising, your supporters can donate to you simply by shopping online, without it costing them any more than what they’re already spending. Supporters can sign up with us to create their account. Then when they shop online with our 7,500+ partner retailers, those retailers will donate a portion of what they spend to a chosen charity, such as your organisation. With easyfundraising, your supporters can donate to you regularly at no additional expense to them.

Find out more about how we work and then register your endangered species conservation organisation with us as one of our good causes.