Non-Profits Investing More in Social Media, Says VerticalResponse Survey

Data set the stage for increased social media usage in 2013

SAN FRANCISCO – January 17, 2013 – VerticalResponse, a leading provider of self-service marketing tools for small businesses and non-profits including email marketing software, social media marketing and online event marketing, revealed the results of an exclusive survey about how much time and money non-profit organizations are investing in social media.

The company surveyed 123 non-profits and asked them various questions about the amount of time and money they spend on social media activities, including finding content to share with their social media communities, and whether their budgets have increased or decreased year over year.

The results suggest that not only are non-profits finding value in social media, but also that social media will play a significant role in their marketing efforts for 2013.

The data are compiled in a non-profit social media marketing infographic and reported below.

The survey results suggest the following conclusions:

1. Non-profits are investing more time in social media.

Sixty-one percent reported spending more time than they did a year ago year, with nearly 40 percent spending six or more hours every week. Broken down further, nearly 30 percent said they spend six to 10 hours per week on social media, while 6 percent said they spend 11 to 20 hours per week and 2 percent reported spending 21 or more hours per week.

2. More non-profits are active on Facebook and Twitter, compared to small businesses.

In addition to non-profits, VerticalResponse surveyed 339 small businesses that were asked an identical set of questions. Ninety-six percent of non-profits reported being on Facebook, versus 90 percent of the small businesses. They also are more active on Facebook: 80 percent of those on Facebook post multiple times per week, compared to 66 percent of the small businesses. Additionally, 72 percent of non-profits are Twitter users, compared to 70 percent of the small businesses.

3. Finding content to share is the most time-consuming for non-profits.

Similar to small businesses, non-profits said finding and posting content required the biggest time investment, suggesting there’s a need for time-saving social media tools and tips. Learning and education took the least amount of time.

4. Social media budgets are likely to increase in 2013.

More than 10 percent reported an increase in their social media budget compared to a year ago, while only 2.5 percent reported a decrease. So, there are nearly four times the number of non-profits that have increased their social media budget, versus those that have decreased. In fact, 22 percent of those surveyed currently pay for social media publishing/analytics tools, and of those, 37 percent spent $26 or more per month on tools.

“Non-profits have to be extremely careful about how they spend their resources, and our survey confirms that they believe an active social media presence is a valuable asset that’s worth their investment,“ said Janine Popick, VerticalResponse founder and CEO. “Social media is playing a larger and larger role when it comes to promoting a worthy cause and generating support – financial and otherwise – and we expect it to grow even more as we head into 2013.”

Methodology: Results are based on an online survey of 462 VerticalResponse customers (123 non-profit organizations and 339 small businesses). The survey was conducted between Sept. 17, 2012, and Oct. 5, 2012.

About VerticalResponse

VerticalResponse Inc. provides a full suite of self-service marketing solutions for small businesses including email marketing, social media marketing, event marketing, online surveys and direct mail marketing. Its mission is to empower small businesses and non-profit organizations to easily and affordably create, manage and analyze their own marketing campaigns. Users can benefit from a wide variety of features via a single dashboard, including more than 700 free email marketing templates; social media management tools to create, schedule and publish content, and engage with followers; and robust reporting so that they can understand overall marketing success. VerticalResponse is headquartered in San Francisco, Calif. For more information visit, and connect on Twitter at @VR4SmallBiz and Facebook at