How Feeding America is Starving its Digital Audience

Feeding America is a nonprofit that fights hunger and food waste across America. The organization is a leader in food preservation, conservation, and equity. Founded in 1979, it has served more than 4 billion meals nationwide. Their work impacts many people, including volunteers, donors and aid recipients, but their media presence has not had the same effect.

Low Engagement on Digital Platforms

Feeding America has a large audience on social media, but their posts receive extremely low levels of engagement. Their Instagram boasts 53,800 followers, but the majority of their posts receive 300 to 500 likes.

A recent post from Feeding America’s Instagram generated 409 likes and 15 comments. (Image via feedingamerica)

Their Twitter feed has an even worse engagement rate. With 459,000 followers, their most recent posts have only received an average of 10 retweets and six likes. That is less than 1 percent of its total followers.

A recent Feeding America Tweet generated only 4 retweets and 8 likes. (Image via FeedingAmerica)

It is clear that Feeding America’s audience is not connecting with their content. Their posts are either:

  • Uninteresting;
  • Not captivating or visually appealing;
  • Lack strategy.

Feeding America needs to find more engaging ways to promote its work and engage its digital audience.

Celebrity Partnerships

Feeding America has partnered with many celebrities and public figures in an attempt to bring awareness to their organization and mission, but these partnerships have not been highlighted on their social media. Celebrity endorsers include Rachael Ray, Matt Damon and Ben Affleck.

These partners bring anywhere from 450,000 to 5.7 million followers to the partnerships, but, just like their own followers, Feeding America is not effectively reaching these additional audiences.

To improve its social media reach, Feeding America could:

  • Generate posts featuring famous partners;
  • Tag partners in posts;
  • Ask partners to post about their collaborations on their personal social media outlets.

Corporate Campaigns

Like their personal partnerships, Feeding America has also developed many partnerships with other organizations and corporations, such as Walmart and T-Mobile. These partnerships have a great impact on Feeding America’s credibility and add to their potential audience outreach, but are not heavily featured in their digital content.

Most recently, Feeding America and Starbucks developed the Starbucks FoodShare campaign. This initiative rescues unsold Starbucks food and donates it to food banks across America. To date, the program has fed more then 10 million people.

Despite the initiative’s effectiveness, Feeding America’s Instagram post about the campaign produced only 8 likes and 2 retweets.

Nothing could be found about the campaign on Starbuck’s Instagram or Twitter accounts. Feeding America needs to engage its partners’ audiences as well as their own to help generate more interest in its personal digital content and initiatives.

Missed Opportunities

Overall, Feeding America’s digital media presence is cohesive and relevant, but not engaging. Their partnerships provide many opportunities for interesting content, but they have not utilized those opportunities to the fullest extent and their digital influence is suffering because of it.

To learn more and evaluate your personal social media presence:

  • Read Forbe’s article about optimizing your social media presence;
  • Consider monitoring your digital media habits with resources like BrandWatch and Hootsuite.

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