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Using History on Social Media

Your organization’s rich history and vibrant culture provides unique opportunities for engagement on social media. By effectively sharing your stories, you can foster and grow your community. Since history is our specialty, we’ve put together five ways to use your history on social media.

1. Sharing Photos & Memories

One of the most powerful (and easiest) ways to engage your audience is by sharing old photos. Images can immediately spark memories and connection. Instagram and Facebook are ideal for showcasing visuals and telling the stories behind them. A digital museum can be a great resource to discover or rediscover some hidden histories that your audience will love.

Encourage your members to contribute their own memorable moments. These shared experiences will not only strengthen connections within your organization, but also  promote a sense of belonging with new and prospective members.
Have fun with your next #TBT!

2. Celebrating Organizational Milestones

Celebrating your organization’s milestones on social media can foster excitement, pride and engagement among members and the broader community. Whether it’s commemorating anniversaries, highlighting significant achievements or recognizing exceptional individuals, sharing these milestones demonstrates the longevity and impact of your organization.

Look for archival materials relevant to the milestone you’re sharing. Those could be photos, letters, awards, memorabilia, etc. Think of things that can provide a visual for the occasion or can share never before seen perspectives. A digital archive can be a one stop shop to help you find those iconic pieces and the gems that have been hidden away for decades. (Thank you metadata tagging!)

Utilize video content where available and dedicated hashtags to amplify the celebration. Encourage others to share their personal experiences and engage in the conversation. You might be surprised by the heartfelt messages they share.

3. Building Communities in Groups

Members and alumni play a vital role in the legacy of any organization, but they can be located across the country — or globe. Thanks to social media groups, you can build and strengthen connections within your network and foster a sense of continued involvement and loyalty.

If members have already created dedicated groups on Facebook or LinkedIn, join them! If not, find a teammate to champion building and inviting members. Private groups can be a great way to communicate internal resources, announce upcoming special events, and share more in-depth stories with your biggest supporters.  

This is a fantastic outlet to share more nuanced archival materials. Something that involved members love to dig into, but wouldn’t see huge numbers on your main feed. Giving your biggest fans more to interact with only makes them that much more dedicated to your organization. Serving it up in a way that feels exclusive — even better.

4. Enriching Storytelling

Whether it’s just a snippet or a larger piece, you can leverage the power of storytelling to share unique aspects of your history with a broad audience on social.

Consider featuring members who have made significant contributions to their communities or share stories of important fundraising events throughout your history. By highlighting these narratives, you not only inspire others, but also showcase the consistent values and positive impact of your organization.

Locate relevant videos, photos and archival objects to help provide visuals that bring the story to life. A digital archive can help your team uncover unique assets quickly. They can then incorporate those visuals into compelling and shareable content.

5. Using History on Social to Fundraise

Social media platforms offer a powerful medium for organizing and promoting fundraising campaigns. Whether it’s supporting a philanthropic cause or funding programs in the organization, using social media allows you to reach a broader audience and rally support.

Using your organization’s history can add depth to your social fundraising campaign. Sharing photos or stories about your past support of a particular cause or program will demonstrate your consistent dedication. That goes a long way when building trust with donors. Those good memories can also spark nostalgia that translates into giving.

In addition to the traditional crowdfunding platforms or dedicated donation pages on your website, Facebook Fundraisers offers a way for donors to give without having to click through. The easier it is for them to give, the more willing they’ll be to contribute.

Next Steps

By utilizing the history and culture of your organization on social media, you can create a layered and engaging online presence. These tactics will not only strengthen the bonds within your organization but also expand your reach, raise awareness and inspire others to connect over their shared history.

Access to your historical assets helps you to more quickly develop an enhanced social presence. Digital museums have advanced search filters to pinpoint the precise type of item you’re looking to share. You can also connect your audience on social media with your bigger picture through exhibits, timelines and biographies.

If you don’t have a digital museum yet, but are interested in creating a tool for your team, we’re here for you. We work with a wide variety of organizations to develop digital preservation strategies and provide all the support they need to build robust digital archives.

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