Facebook today announced that it now has 1 billion monthly active users, but although it is a social network, that doesn’t mean that many on there are using it for social causes. Today the company said in a developer blog post that the top 25 nonprofits with Facebook Pages are connecting with over 32 million people worldwide. That works out to just 3.2% of its monthly active user base.
So what’s the message here? Well, maybe three: the first one seems to be that not that many of us Facebook users think of it as a place get our information about good causes, in that not too many of use are choosing to like these pages to get their updates. The second is the flip side of that coin: nonprofits (and maybe the same could go for profit businesses, too) have not figured out the best way to use these pages to best leverage the enormous potential of 1 billion users.
Still, some of them might argue that Facebook has had an enormous impact on raising their profile, meaning that we’re talking here about companies that had little in the way of savvy marketing behind them to begin with.
And the third? Facebook is trying to show that it’s not just about reaching big numbers but also about bringing good things out into the light. (Although I would argue points one and two back, to say that it’s not nearly as good as it could be.)
Facebook has provided some stats and milestones illustrating on how well certain nonprofit pages have been doing on the Facebook platform:
Justgiving — UK-based fundraising platform — has seen app usage up by 177% since integrating Open Graph. Each donation shared is worth about £5 to a charitable organization, justgiving estimates. It says that last year people raised £25 million through its Facebook app.
WeTopia — a social game from Sojo Studios with virtual villages and charitable donations from the virtual currency — has provided 1.6 million gallons of drinking water; 760,000 hot meals for children in Haiti; 45,000 meals for US children living in poverty, and more than 3,000 warm coats to children in Afghanistan and the US.
FundRazr — another a social fundraising app that helps people collect funds for cause-related campaigns — saw a six-fold increase in comments after integrating Open Graph, with a later Like action integration boosting referrals by 30 times and story impressions by 60 times.
Learnist — social learning product — has had 2.5M impressions in the last 30 days through Open Graph.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation have made a $2.5 million donation to the development of Facebook education apps.
For those nonprofits out there who are not seeing quite such a bang for your 1 billion bucks, Facebook’s published some pointers on how to do things right, and some more examples of how well some of them are doing. You can check them out here.