hospice switching to social mediaUK hospice staff are using social and digital tools for fundraising and communications, but the numbers are still small compared to charities generally, according to a study by Access Group. 

The survey found that the amount of hospices that allowed donors to manage their accounts online had doubled, but the overall figure was still low – with just 20% of respondents allowing people to manage and maintain their accounts online – potentially missing a huge fundraising opportunity. The research was based on a survey of delegates at the recent Help the Hospices’ Care Conference.

Access first ran the survey in 2011, painting a picture on how hospices utilised social media for raising awareness and generating donations. In 2013 Access again asked Hospice Care Conference delegates a set of questions to gauge opinions and statistics on the use of Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flickr.

Katrina Poulson, Director of Education & Nursing for Compton Hospice said: “I was surprised to see that so little had changed in terms of activities that supporters can self-manage via hospice websites, considering the numbers of supporters on social media (Twitter followers and Facebook Likes) has increased so dramatically”. 

Facebook, Twitter and YouTube are the most popular social media for charities in terms of supporter insights and donor engagement. 

Poulson added: “The survey has provided valuable insight into a good opportunity for development that may otherwise have been missed. With over 50% of staff having access to smart phones, meaning that remote social media engagement can raise awareness in real time.”

Get Smart, Get Social, Get Fundraising is a survey by Access, for all Help the Hospices members, getting an insight into what social media is contributing to the development, growth and engagement for hospices.

Pic caption: Rob Barr, Divisional Director (NFP) Access presents a cheque to Katrina Poulson, Compton Hospice