A SUMMER NPO CHECKLIST
A recent Kellogg Foundation study found that as many as 50 percent of potential donors check out the organization on line before they give or volunteer, whether online or not. Is your NPO maximizing its potential?
Summer is at hand. Things are hopefully a little less hectic in your NPO office. Consider taking a morning to complete the Gardner & Associates Digital Checklist. The goal of this checklist is two-fold: 1. Reduce the cost of your electronic services and 2. Increase the marketing effectiveness of your website and social media links.
G&A recently went through the checklist. We updated our software, reduced our phone bill by $20 and added a much needed data package to our iPhone, saving another $36 in messaging expenses.
Test ten items:
- Study your landline telephone, Internet and mobile telephone bills. Call your provider to determine if there is a newer package or bundle that meets your changing usage.
- Consider a smart phone with data and messaging packages to increase your efficiency and ability to manage social media remotely.
- Review your communications equipment to determine if it is serviceable and effective or if it is an analog device in a digital world.
- Assess your computer software to determine if it supports current needs.
- Evaluate your website from six perspectives:
1. How easy (or difficult) is your site to navigate?
2. Does it tell a compelling story?
3. What is your call to action?
4. Does it convey legitimacy and credibility?
5. Is it easy to make a donation?
6. How do you engage visitors to become volunteers?
- Do you offer visitors an opportunity to engage in dialogue with you?
- Evaluate your links to social media (Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn).
- Gauge how you use pictures to tell your story.
- Does your website list the names of your board members?
- Does your site report how past donations or sponsorships have made an impact?
THREE DIGITAL TIPS
1. Become active in social networking. Use Facebook or LinkedIn to publicize an upcoming event, and invite your fans to attend. This approach will automatically put your event on your fans calendars.
Recent studies indicate that 46% of American adults use a social media tool such as Facebook, MySpace or LinkedIn. The more engaged and affluent adults are the early adapters. In an increasingly competitive fundraising environment, it’s not surprising that 88% of NPOs are experimenting with social media.
2. Expand your online exposure. Apply to www.google.com/grants/index.html for a free Google AdWords advertising grant. You can reach more new donors by connecting with existing online traffic.
3. Use pictures to tell your story. Use your Facebook or Twitter or Flickr account to create a photostream of activities, people or events.
Select or plan pictures that demonstrate your NPO’s presence or impact. A smart phone can help you instantly and remotely add pictures to your social media or website.
DID THESE IDEAS HELP?
Paul and Walt are interested in how helpful the ideas that we present in the Gardner Report are to you and your Not-for-Profit Organization. Share the impact or your experience with us.
MOVING THE NEEDLE
Gardner & Associates is thankful that the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation has given Walt Eilers an opportunity to serve on its Federal Budget Study Task Force. Walt and NPO leaders from across Arkansas are learning how to locate and to connect with federal funds. The task force will create a statewide resource of community leaders who are knowledgeable in the federal budget and accessing its programs. This Task Force is part of the WRF program entitled Moving the Needle.