Americans are generous. So generous in fact that we gave combined $390.05 billion to charitable organizations in 2016, according to Giving USA. Yet that very generosity of spirit can pose an interesting challenge for non-profits: With so many worthy institutions out there, how do you get your organization noticed?
The answer, we believe at TripleOne Consulting, is to borrow a page from what exceptional for-profit organizations have been doing for years: Blended Communications. This holistic approach to fundraising and communications makes sure that all of your materials – whether traditional print, television, radio, email, video direct, social media and more – are working harmoniously to convey the same message in the manner best suited to the particular medium.
It sounds simple enough, but all too often, organizations fail to do this well. Let’s look at a simple and common communication – the year-end fundraising letter. Most non-profits send some type of communication to donors encouraging them to make a year-end (and often tax-deductible) gift. But let’s take a look at what sets a mediocre year-end giving campaign apart from one that exceeds its goals.
Great campaigns begin with a touching personal story that speaks powerfully to donors and motivates them to give so that you can continue to do your good work. But allowing donors to give easily is where many campaigns begin to fall apart. A typical campaign may include a tear-off donation sheet and a return envelope. But …
· Is it pre-filled with the donor’s name and address so they don’t have to take the time to write it all out?
· Does it indicate the amount of last year’s gift and a suggested increase for this year to encourage generosity?
· Does it provide a space for donors to enter their credit card information so they don’t have to write out a check?
· Does it give an easy to follow link to your website?
· Does that link go directly to an online donation screen?
· Is that donation link mobile friendly so folks can easily give from their cell phones?
And that’s merely the traditional mail side of the equation. A blended campaign should include an email with that same information and a single, clearly defined call to action button that links directly to an easy-to-use payment screen.
That same message should be carried throughout your social media accounts in short, impactful posts that link to your donation page. Those posts should be well-crafted enough to encourage donors to share them, thus expanding your reach beyond your base into new territory.
You should be doing a social media ad campaign using those posts and targeted specifically to the geographic area and demographic interests of your audience to further expand your reach and get your name out there.
That’s not even touching on how other media advertising should be working in conjunction with this campaign. The end result of a blended communications campaign is easy to envision: higher levels of donor engagement that result in exceeding goals.
Yet these types of campaigns are complex and often exceed the expertise and/or time constraints of your existing staff and volunteers. That’s where TripleOne Consulting can step in to assist. Contact us today to design and execute your campaigns. We’re certain we’ll be #TheLastAgency you’ll ever need to call!
-- Michael Desroches