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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

How to get thousands of people to support your charity on social media

This feature is almost 8 years old

Ollie Buchannan sat down with Third Force News to explain how he grew his Humans of Edinburgh Facebook page to over 44,000 followers in just a few months

How do you build up a fan base of more than 44,000 followers on Facebook in just a few months?

Ollie Buchanan and his friends at Humans of Edinburgh told members of the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations’ comms network exactly how, and now TFN is sharing that advice with you.

If you haven’t seen it before, the Humans of Edinburgh page offers an array of heart-warming, funny and tear-jerking stories from real people Ollie has met on the streets of the Capital.

Interestingly for charities, fans can’t seem to hold back from liking, commenting and sharing the content and the page has even sparked fundraising appeals and other quests for good deeds.

With most charity comms people admitting they would give their eye-teeth for the level of interaction his page sees Ollie – interviewed by Susan Smith, editor of Third Force News – explained how he bucked the trend and built such an immense and engaged audience in such a short time.

If you weren’t lucky enough to attend, watch the video below and let us know what you learned by leaving a comment.

Top social tips from Humans of Edinburgh
Engage with people with similar interests to you - follow them on Twitter and Facebook and comment on their pages and tweets
Post at times when lots of people are on social media - commuters are bored, so between 8am and 9am and 5pm and 6pm are key times for Twitter. People are on Facebook a lot in the evening and weekends when they're at home.
Use pictures. Humans of Edinburgh is all about the photographs, but people generally engage with social content more if it uses images. In fact, tweets with a picture are around 90% more likely to be retweeted.
Only pay to promote a post on Facebook if it's already doing well. Facebook wants to keep its users happy and not clog up their feeds with stuff they're not interested in, so even if you pay to promote a post, if it's rubbish it won't do well. Leave a post up unpromoted for a few hours and see how it goes.
Try posting in the middle of the night! You'll be suprised by how many insomniacs are on Facebook, and generally, they're not finding much to engage with. If you post at 3am, they may jump on your content and pushing it up to the top of all their friends' feeds first thing in the morning.


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