Digital marketing has revolutionized how corporations advertise and engage prospective leads. Social media is increasingly being used to attract and interact with customers. Fortunately, digital strategies are not exclusive to profit-oriented organizations only. Nonprofits can also leverage social media platforms, email marketing, etc. to reach a wider audience.
As technology advances, most activities are being transferred online for convenience and better results. Millions of people across the globe spend most of their day on the internet. What better place to reach a large audience?
In fact, a study showed that online giving has received a tremendous spike over the years. And this trend is sure to continue as the internet holds the largest community of donors.
Consider how these tips could bolster how your organization engages donors online.
TIP 1: INCENTIVIZE FURTHER ENGAGEMENT
While it’s essential to optimize your marketing so that recipients will be more likely to engage with your message, don’t let that engagement stop once they finish reading your email.
Always directly call for further engagement and provide a way to do it. In most cases, this will be making an online donation, and you can market it with the unique donation tools that we identified here. Post donation don’t forget to request that donors see if their company will match their donation as a way to double their impact.
If your organization features a membership program, it’s fairly easy to provide new ways to engage your email recipients.
Even if your organization doesn’t feature a membership program, there are plenty of ways to incentivize further engagement in your email campaigns. For instance, any of the following can be a great method for getting your recipients involved after reading your email:
- Special invitations to fundraising events
- Early access to tickets and events
- Special offers on fundraising products or merchandise
- Free raffle tickets or other rewards for volunteering
- Limited-time donation rewards
TIP 2: CREATE PERSONALIZED APPEALS
The key to success is personalization—segmenting and targeting major donors with content specific to them. It’s not about creating entirely new content or telling a different story, but you must acknowledge the existing relationship you have with the donor and, more importantly, the kind of impact they can have (or have had) through their gifts. Blackbaud’s latest wealth research shows that major donors care about the individual story, but they also want to understand the long term impact of their investment in the mission.
Personalize the donation forms and autoresponders for major donors so that the headline, opening statement, and donation amounts, reflect messaging for specifically for them.
Depending on your technology, you can set up a donation form to enable donors to make pledges. Similar to how monthly giving is managed online, a pledge donation will charge the major donor’s credit card each quarter until the pledge is paid in full.
TIP 3: CREATE AN EMAIL WELCOME SERIES FOR NEW DONORS
Speaking of creating something truly special, I always recommend an email welcome series for all new donors, even if they’ve been in your file for a while.
Think about what makes your donors unique. What differentiates a donor from other people that are engaged with your organization? How do you want to communicate that? These are the sorts of questions you should consider when crafting your donor welcome messages.
Your donor welcome series could include a series of emails from key stakeholders in your organization, including a board member or a long-time committed volunteer. If you mail materials to new donors, be sure that your mail and email materials tie together well.
TIP 4: GIVE DONORS SOMETHING TANGIBLE (LIKE A THANK YOU GIFT)
First, try giving something that aligns with your mission. For example, a conservation organization might provide a reusable water bottle or tote bags. Next, use branded gifts to expand awareness and reach of your mission. You can also maximize your donations by providing an option for donors to opt out of receiving a gift. If your organization is member based or has gated content, try giving away a 2-week free trial.You could take this one step further by sending a thank you email to the donor. In it, you should not only thank them for their conversation but also invite them to your community. For example, a private Facebook group where you engage with donors and share stories and information.