Just to give you a basis for thought, in 2009 businesses had a disastrous year when it came to consumer trust. According to the 2009 Edelman Trust Barometer overall trust dropped about 20% from 2008, which is a pretty drastic decline. Also important to note is that Edlemen asserts that communication is JUST as important as product quality in generating trust; the two go hand in hand.
Additionally, a poll by Harris Interactive ranks the most trusted non-profits and organizations; those gracing the top ten include St. Jude’s Research Hospital (in the top spot), Salvation Army, The Smithsonian, and Susan B. Komen For the Cure, just to name a few. St. Jude’s and Susan B. Komen also ranked in the top ten for non-profits people were most likely to donate to. According to the poll:
”One of the most critical elements of a non-profit’s brand name is Trust. The trust that the general public places in non-profits is paramount to their success as enduring and powerful brands. Those that deliver well on their promises and missions stand the test of time,” noted Justin Greeves, Senior Vice President of Public Affairs at Harris Interactive. “In the context of this brand evaluation, Trust should be viewed as both a concrete organizational trait and a point of emotional connection with supporters and those in need of help and assistance”.
Trust, then, is vital to a thriving organization and the question becomes: how do you create it?
There are various ways to go about doing this. Social media is a great tool to utilize if the majority of your organization is web-based (but it’s also a great tool to utilize anyway). This is for a number of reasons. For one, social media can be used to inject a personality into your non-profit— making it more than just another business of sorts— and can lead to creating an emotional connection. Additionally, the free-flow of information is very important because this also seems to help generate trust. The first social media outlet that should come to mind with these ideas is a blog. Blogs are great because they are personal and generally people are free to voice their opinions and unique ideas, all the while discussing relevant information. The same goes for Twitter, only you are limited to 140 characters.
Here’s a list of some websites offering free blog services that you can easily set up:
1. Wordpress — We recommend using a self-hosted Wordpress site — Check out our list of Wordpress themes to see the capabilities of this platform.
Blogging is an excellent way to generate long term trust with both your supporters and people who may just be Googling your organization. Your blog can tell your organization’s story much better than a static brochure-ish site! Remember to be honest, informative, and to let your personality shine through!
If you are looking to step up your blogging game but don’t know where to begin please feel free to contact us. We would be more than willing to assess your organization’s social media needs and recommend the right platform to fit you. =)