“We’re live!”

Those words used to only be uttered by the production crews on the evening news, but today anybody - including your nonprofit - can use Facebook Live to stream important events. 

The first time I used it was in a spur-the-moment decision during a protest. And, in fact, organizations like Black Lives Matter have used Facebook Live to tremendous effect.

But nonprofits of all kinds have started using it to bring the outside world into their world, at least for a few moments. So whether you’re using it to share a behind-the-scenes look at your work, live streaming a fundraising training, or livestreaming your gala, there are lots of ways your nonprofit could be using Facebook Live.

Examples of How Nonprofits Use Facebook Live

How your organization uses Facebook Live will depend on a number of factors. Among these are things like….

  • Comfort with social media
  • Meaningful experiences to share (either organically or that you create)
  • Staff resources designated to this content
  • Size and type of your audience
  • And many more!

To give you some ideas, check out these examples of how nonprofits are already using Facebook Live to engage with their supporters…

Autostraddle uses Facebook Live to do a regular Q&A show on all matters of gender and sexuality called “Getting in Bed with Kristin.”

Black Lives Matter uses Facebook Live as a means of accountability during peaceful protests, including during arrests.

The Case Foundation uses Facebook Live to help CEO Jean Case connect directly with those impacted by the Foundation’s work.

All of these organizations are leveraging the unique value of being in people’s Facebook feeds with meaningful and interesting live content. It is the perfect application of the old mantra “Go to where the people are.”

How to Use Facebook Live for Nonprofits

By now, anybody can go Live on Facebook with just a click of a button inside your Facebook app or in the status bar of Facebook on your computer. (The full Facebook explainer article is here). 

What’s harder is making sure when your nonprofit uses Facebook live that you have a strong audience watching you. Nobody wants to be watched Live by just one other person….

Of course, the best way to get a big audience for your livestream is to make sure that you’ve been actively building your Facebook following. Regardless of the number of followers you have, I want to show you one hack your nonprofit can use to get more people ready and waiting for you to go live. 

If you want more people to watch your nonprofit’s Facebook Live video, the best thing you can do is schedule your Facebook Live in advance. 

Facebook live schedule

This gives people an important head’s up in advance and helps prime your donors [hyperlink] to watch you go live. 

That way instead of feeling like you’re talking to an empty room, you can use Facebook Live to connect with your nonprofit’s audience in big numbers.