I can hear the question marks in your minds now, “How is it that social media has anything to do with federal grants?”
Perhaps surprisingly, and increasingly more so, quite a bit!
According to SmartEGrants, one of the grant professional support firms on the frontlines working with organizations on their grant and social media goal overlap:
“Social media is one tool that is breaking down barriers and opening up opportunities to connect, dialog and build network. Social media is evolving. Social media is no longer trivial. Social media is already transforming philanthropy and advocacy including grant seeking and grant management. Understanding the constantly evolving best practices related to the intersection of grants and social media while maintaining ethics and competencies is critical to being competitive for grant funds moving forward.”
Have you looked at any of your grant funders, whether current or potential, whether federal, state or private, on social media? You can find them on their networks of choice by looking for the social media icons on their sites, by looking at the social media tab on their Foundation Directory Online record, or by following the funder lists created by Glass Pockets.
Have you looked at what information they are sharing on their networks of choice? This information *has* to become a key part of your grant funder research and grant funder relationship building and maintenance efforts. It is part of the funder’s dialogue. If you choose to ignore it, another grant seeking organization will rely on that information instead for an edge in order to become more competitive than you in the process.
Grantors, including federal agencies like HUD and NEA are posting their opportunities on their social media accounts. They are sharing information about grantee success on their social media accounts. They are also starting to expect and in sometimes even require social media utilization by grantees. Social media is not only for grant seeking organizations focused on private and corporate foundations. Social media is a reality for grant seeking organizations working to maintain or secure federal funding.
However, don’t simply take our word, or even SmartEGrants word for it. Here are a few pieces for consideration about how grants and social media support each other and work together to achieve your grant seeking organization’s goals from both the funders and the grant professional’s perspective:
Losing the Social Anxiety – Written by the Oishei Foundation and published by GlassPockets and The Foundation Center on 1/26/15
Social Media & Grants Logic Model – Created by JM Grants
Looking to understand more about how your grant seeking organization can use social media in your grant funder relationship development and grant management sharing of success stories and data? You can join our colleagues at SmartEGrants and #grantchat for a webinar series, Blueprints for Grants on social media and grants starting *this* Thursday. Learn more here.