Developing a long-term strategy for engagement requires that you first take stock of the current state of your organization’s assets and audience. A thorough analysis of your nonprofit’s present situation enables you to establish key benchmarks that can be used to measure the success of your future engagement efforts and the channels used to support them. Such a valuable exercise will also highlight where you are hitting the mark, and identify opportunities for improvement.

No single measure will provide deep insight into your engagement efforts. You must review, examine and dig into many areas to gain a well-rounded understanding of your audience, interactions, influences and key performance indicators (KPIs).

This blog series will walk you through six key areas

  1. Messaging
  2. Segmentation
  3. Website
  4. Emails
  5. Social Media
  6. Multi-channel Integration

Ready? Then let’s go.

Examine the content of your web site, emails, direct mail, PSAs, social media and any other communication assets. Is your organization’s impact clearly conveyed in the messaging? Can a donor easily see how their donation has made a difference and led to a positive outcome? Is your messaging most likely to resonate with older donors or younger ones, or are you able to span both segments because of the nature of your organization? Also, analyze your process for thanking donors. Are they receiving the thanks they deserve for their support?

If there is uncertainty about the type of content that is most compelling, try A/B testing for future messages over a specified time period (e.g., 6 months). Examine web site analytics to assess what content seems to capture visitors’ attention. These strategies should remove any uncertainty and support conclusions with hard data.

Your nonprofit has the opportunity to become your donors’ favorite charity with mission-focused messages that demonstrate your impact and, if possible, the donor’s role in that success. The more you can get a supporter truly engaged with the mission, the more likely you are to become that individual’s charity of choice. Strive to increase participation rates and secure a deeper level of involvement by presenting compelling content that speaks to the preferences, attitudes, knowledge and experience shared by the majority of donors in the group.

Be sure to include messaging that thanks your donors and shows their impact. Don’t confuse an email receipt or standard thank you as conveying your true appreciation for everything donors do to support the organization.

To learn more, download A Guide to Long Term Donor Cultivation or check back next week for the next post in this series.