How to Target and Recruit Volunteers through Social Media Best?

Service Spotlight, Social Media, Volunteer Management, Volunteering / Monday, November 16th, 2020

Evermore nonprofit organizations rely on the commitment of diligent volunteers to function and accomplish aims. But sometimes it’s a challenging task to find, contact, and engage potential contributors, isn’t it so?

So, what’s the best way to reach out to people and have the volunteer base for your program?

At the Volunteer Mark Management Platform, we know that traditional ways to recruit participants through local or personal contacts, referrals, friends of friends, and mouth to mouth are not efficient as they used to be, and new opportunities emerge.

An easy and practical approach to find potential volunteers, especially in today’s interconnected world, is, guess what? The answer is recruiting volunteers through social media.

Powerful social giants spread ideas and attract like-minded souls to become followers, and followers are the prospective volunteers nonprofits need. 

But how to organize social media activities to grow your nonprofit volunteer base? Read ahead to find the answers on how to use the web to recruit supporters of your cause, be it any of:

Social Media Calls for Volunteers

No matter the niche, at Volunteer Mark we have a solution for a wide range of nonprofits, such as:

Let’s dive in!

First, before engage in any of the social media platforms, you have to:

Curate Content to Address Altruistic Values

Your goal is to grab the attention of people ready to give and prompt them to action. To achieve activation, it’s mandatory to get to know how the brain functions, what are the characteristics and triggers driving motivation, how social media can backfire on HR and corporate image, how to apply each of these, and put them all to work together. Dive deep into how our brain drives behavior and influences decisions to better tailor your messaging and visual triggers.

Think of ways to address your altruistic goal in a catchy and inspiring way so people share, like, comment, retweet, send to friends, repin, or any other form of social media interaction. To choose the best piece of image or video, you better look into using or the least test some popular content curation tools for best results in curating the right piece of content on social media and your cause.

So, what immediately catches the eye?

  • Self-centered;
  • Contrast;
  • Color Dynamics;
  • Tangible input;
  • The beginning and the end;
  • Visual stimuli;
  • Emotional triggers.

Test visuals 

  1. Create an inspirational recruitment video of the hard work you do together with your staff and other volunteers. 
  2. Showcase your work and results through colorful graphics or diagrams. 
  3. Use a distinctive logo of your nonprofit and post it to stand out, establish a strong online presence, show professionalism, and appeal to supporters.

Mix with humor 

Seeking volunteers social media copy goes a long way. Go more on the bright and funny side and try to infuse humor with memes, cartoons, or comics. If you are a nonprofit for animal rescue, it’s a brilliant strategy to post charming photos of cute baby pets to engage your followers or play stories from pets saved and now living happily. 

Mix with cries for help

On the opposite side of the coin, we have pity and the appeal to compassion and action to make things right. Depending on the nature of your cause, addressing the problem straight on can increase the number of volunteers onboarded via social media.

Bold and sincere text posts. 

Choose questions or inspiring quotes as captions. A powerful message evokes people to consider the issues addressed by the cause and the urge to volunteer and contribute as part of the solution.


Hashtags connect social media users with posts related to a particular topic. You might find it ubiquitous, but loyal followers always notice a unique and clever hashtag. 

So, create your own special hashtag to draw their attention and have them click on it. This way you introduce your message and ideals to your followers and more users and affect them.

Help Your Audience “Feel” the Experience

Introduce photos and videos that show others having a powerful experience. It doesn’t matter whether the experience shows your product or an unrelated experience. The important thing is to reinforce the emotions you want to be associated with your brand and cause.

 Bear in mind that volunteers come from all ages all the way up to retired seniors all potential activists to join the cause! The tricky thing is motivation, though. That’s why it’s best to tailor your message based on what drives people throughout different age.

Promise (and Deliver) Something New

Since our early days, our brains have been attracted to what’s familiar because it gives us a sense of security and safety, so we go smoothly with our daily lives.

However, as much as we’re drawn to the familiar, we’re equally intrigued by new things. It’s human nature to innovate and improve, a fact especially in volunteer management and training. Anything “new” promises that opportunity and the lack makes volunteers quit, unfortunately. On that note, read our guide:

Strategies to Decrease Nonprofit Staff Attrition

Back to our toolkit for recruiting social media volunteers now. So, the thing is people have an underlying urge to share knowledge to look good or in-the-know (everybody wants to be an influencer, right?). So, when we see something new, we’re attracted to that information, hoping later we can tell others and build our own social currency!

Marketing takeaway: Use concepts nearby the word New to wake up the brain and draw attention to your cause.

Make a point to showcase all the new ventures and activities going on with your organization, be it collaborating with products, or services, especially if they’re different from what anybody does.

Depending on how frequently news emerge from your nonprofit, you might want to upkeep dedicated accounts used only to announce the news.

Check our great guides:

Keep Potential Volunteers Informed

An emotional connection with your followers is key to motivate them to volunteer. It’s essential to share posts about your nonprofit regularly to establish that connection. 

Keep the users on track about your purpose, activities, and accomplishments. This way you emphasize the impact of your organization and the rights volunteers have and the difference each makes. You have your subscribers feel they have the chance to make good deeds and contribute to your mission.

Remember to always announce current goals, needs, voluntary projects, and events, so your potential volunteers sign up on time. Or invite them to do it yourself.

A useful tip is to tag all participants – already volunteers, sponsors, your team, on your posts, so your followers are aware of more details and how you complete your objectives.

Plan your posts ahead of time to ensure consistency and to ensure that your potential volunteers stay tuned and don’t lose interest.

Educate as Part of Recruiting Volunteers through Social Media

What’s great about the recruitment of volunteers through social media is it allows you to educate them that volunteering is worth doing

  • Use your online platforms to describe the issue which your nonprofit seeks to solve. 
  • Share information about how serious it is, what damages it causes, to who, etc. 
  • Explain the complexities of the cause and problems no matter if the mission is fundraising, animal welfare, or environmental protection.
  • Encourage people to educate others themselves. The more your followers learn about it, the bigger the chance they get involved. 
  • Focus on campaigns that spread an informative, appealing, creative, and emotional way to affect the audience.
  • The knowledge and experience of your organization should be the key drivers for recruiting volunteers via social media.

Spark Social Media Discussion Prior to Recruiting Volunteers

Get your followers to communicate with you using friendly customer service skills through powerful platforms like Twitter or Facebook Groups. Create chats on a specific topic and use hashtags so more users get to them. Invite your audience to attend these chats and initiate discussions. This way curious subscribers learn more about volunteer opportunities in your association, while other users share experiences and opinions on voluntary and your nonprofit’s cause.

Another great piece of advice is to record live videos where you communicate with your audience, respond to questions, give advice, and more.

Include Sign-up Links and Contacts to Aid Recruitment

After you engage your intrigued audience to your beliefs and create a connection with them, it’s time to actually recruit.

To make joining your team easy and fast, always share your posts with a sign-up link. This way inspired and ready-to-commit followers just register and you already rely on them.

Remember to share contacts on each online profile you have, so your followers have alternative ways to reach out to you. Leave your phone number, email address, and any other form of contact available.

Using Social Media to Recruit and Retain Volunteers – To Conclude

To find and recruit new volunteers through social media is an efficient method to expand your nonprofit’s team and accomplishments. Follow our tips to come up with your own creative ideas on how to best distribute your message and mission on the web, so you engage and gain many supporters.