Last year when a non-profit signed a contract with our agency, we set some specific goals to help reach their organization's overall goals. Those goals included:
- Increasing donors in specific age groups
- Increasing name recognition in specific geographic areas
The organization has many additional goals, but these two landed at the top of the list. Maybe your goals are not generational or geographical in nature, however, you can use your current donor data to set specific goals, create a plan to reach those goals and analyze your results.
If you want to increase name recognition among a specific group, look at your current social media demographics and set goals for increases where needed. If you want to move donors from one category to another, note where these donors are now and where you want them to be in one, two or three years.
In the case of our client, we began to look at people in our database already in those age groups or geographic areas. Donors, volunteers or contacts who met both requirements automatically rose to the top of our prospect list. To do this, we needed to have some idea of where our contacts lived and their age group. Both of these data points were currently tracked in the system. If your system isn’t tracking a metric you need, now’s the time to add that line to your list and fill it in for as many donors as possible.
Once you’ve identified your prospects, you can review what e-mail blasts, blog posts, events and other communication engaged these prospects. What reached them best? What caused them to engage with you? What fell flat? Use this information to create a campaign aimed at these prospects alone.
For this client, we chose to write content and social media posts and create videos directed at our identified prospects. We also created a influencer marketing campaign to engage these current donors in promoting our brand among their friends, neighbors and family members.
That’s one short paragraph for a lot of work that went into the campaign. In fact, the campaign is still on-going as we send information to our social media influencers every month offering guidance on how to promote the organization through social media.
Just now, a year later, we are able to review the data gathered and begin to see if we’re making progress. While part of our process certainly includes increasing numbers in our database of people in a specific generation and a few specific geographic areas, we also looked at our social media demographics. Do we have higher numbers of followers or friends from specific cities than we had one year ago? Have our age ranges shifted in those demographics? Have we increased followers on platforms that cater to our specific demographic?
Knowing everything about all your donors can be helpful when reaching out individually to large donors or increasing donor retention, however, for campaigns with very specific goals, identifying and paying attention to specific analytic metrics can be more effective than trying to process all the information at the same time.
Don’t allow the amount of information you have about your donors to overwhelm you as you create your donor cultivation process. It’s all important, but it’s not all important at the same time. Set your goals. Identify commonalities among your target group of donors. Create programs, content and outreach to reach your prospects and others like them. Engage your current donors in an influencer campaign to help you reach your goals. And measure, measure, measure.