The Impact of Social Media Activity on Nonprofit Donations in China

Abstract

Social media platforms have gained wide attention in the for-profit and nonprofit sectors as an effective way to reach individuals at low cost. In the nonprofit sector, social media offers a new venue to engage supporters and raise funds. Unfortunately, the complexity of the media can prove a challenge for nonprofits looking to develop an effective social media strategy. The nascent nonprofit research provides glimpses into how to go about forming such a strategy. This paper aims to determine whether the optimal social media strategy for the nonprofit sector differs from that for the for-profit sector. We collected, over a 6-year period, daily donation data from the Chinese nonprofit Free Lunch for Children and their corresponding daily activities on the social media platform Weibo and analyzed the relationship between them. Results indicate interesting counterintuitive results showcasing a different optimal strategy for the nonprofit as compared to the for-profit sector.

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Correspondence to Robert Shearer.

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Tian, F., Labban, A., Shearer, R. et al. The Impact of Social Media Activity on Nonprofit Donations in China. Voluntas (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11266-019-00168-7

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Keywords

  • Nonprofit fundraising
  • Social media
  • Firm-generated content (FGC)
  • User-generated content (UGC)