Check out the Sacramento Tree Foundation’s Facebook page posts before and after their very successful Facebook growth campaign, and then read what Colleen Cadwallader, the organization’s development director, has to say about the results. (Note: republished version – section that was left out was inserted.)
Before – 1,200 friends:
After – ~3,500 friends*:
*Approximately 300 of the new likes were from outside the local area
Background: After renovating its Campus Commons senior independent living community outdoor environment in Sacramento – including planting 106 new trees – Sacramento-based Ray Stone Seniors approached the Sacramento Tree Foundation about a cross-promotional campaign. Active in the local community since 1968, the company saw a connection between their renovation effort and STF’s campaign to preserve and protect Sacramento’s legacy of trees. What if local companies got behind the community goal of planting 5 million trees? The company offered to make a donation for every new Facebook friend that liked the STF Facebook page in a 30 day period – an adaptation of a matching donation fundraising program. In return, STF would expose its audience of 12,000 newsletter subscribers and 1,000+ Facebook friends to Ray Stone senior independent living communities.
Disclosure: “Philanthrophile” is not a bystander in this one. I was a matchmaker. As an owner/family member and sometimes-consultant for Ray Stone Seniors, I stumbled across the fact the Campus Commons senior independent living community had made a dramatic investment in trees and landscaping as part of its vision of having a high quality indoor/outdoor living experience. It occurred to me that there might be an opportunity for a new kind of business collaboration that supported both organizations’ goals. “Philanthrophile’s” personal goal is to help local nonprofits find effective and affordable ways to further their missions.
Q & A with Colleen Cadwallader
What happened? Did engagement and interaction increase, decrease or stay about the same?
Engagement and interaction increased ten-fold; however, that was in large part because we made an extra effort to post fun and interesting things that enticed fans to participate more. The promotion really motivated our staff to use Facebook more.
What did STF do to promote and add legs to the campaign?
We used a number of different tactics to get the word out:
- Email taglines about the campaign were added to every staff member’s signature
- Two single-message Constant Contact email blasts were emailed out to our 12,000 contacts
- We advertised through Facebook
- We participated in a radio interview with KFBK
- We asked our partners to put the campaign on their pages (see example below)
- We asked our Board members and staff to put the request on their own personal Facebook pages
- We asked people to like us while we had them at tree-planting events