September 23, 2010; Source: Mashable | Nonprofits are leading the way with creative and effective ways to harness the power of social media, says a report released by the UMass Dartmouth, Center for Marketing Research. You can find the study here. The report says “that the largest U.S. non-profit organizations continue to outpace Inc. 500 businesses and higher education institutions in their familiarity, use and monitoring of social media.”

As of this writing, 93 percent of the top U.S. charities have a Facebook page, 87 percent have a Twitter profile, and 65 percent have a blog. Tell us something we didn’t know, right? We’re doing what we can to use “social media for social good.”

Here Mashable profiles “three small cause campaigns that won big”—showing how social media can create a large voice for even small groups. The first is a documentary film about a man, suffering from Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). It raised $2 million for DMD research. The second campaign shows how a cyclist blogger raised $50,000 for LIVESTRONG and $50,000 for World Bicycle Relief, and the third shows how Epic Change raised $17,000 to support Mama Lucy in her efforts to educate children in Tanzania using primarily their website, Facebook, and Twitter.—Aaron Lester