Do donors realize the impact of your mission?
Save lives or change lives. That’s what non-profit organizations do. So why do some seem to flourish more easily than others? Some organizations have broad appeal—they impact issues like widespread diseases that affect many individuals and families, or they work on behalf of those who can’t help themselves, like pets or wildlife—who can resist a cuddly dog or a majestic blue whale?
For other organizations, donor perception may be getting in the way of their full fundraising potential. Donors may underestimate the real impact of their gifts. Sound like a problem your nonprofit is facing?
More specific causes or other sources of funding
Why would a potential donor think a nonprofit simply doesn’t need his or her money? Consider, for example, a public school foundation, a public library or a volunteer fire company. These entities receive funding from taxes and other sources. After all, if the donor is paying taxes that are intended to benefit these public services, isn’t that non-negotiable tax a gift? Some donors believe so, not because they lack generosity, but because they lack information.
As these types of organizations know (all too well) tax dollars or other non-charitable forms of income don’t cover everything. It’s critical then to educate donors through clear, consistent and relevant communication about gaps in funding and specifically how donor gifts can make an impact.
Illustrating your cause through storytelling
When Donegal School District began planning for a new state-of-the-art athletic complex, a group of volunteers came together to form the Donegal Athletic Club (DAC), a private, independent non-profit organization, that could raise funds to support the project. DAC set a goal to raise $1 million to help offset the cost of the project, allowing more district funds to support other activities and programs.
Naturally, volunteers for DAC came up against some resistance during the early part of the campaign. “But what about my tax dollars?” people asked. DAC volunteers used those objections to create a communications plan: in addition to a comprehensive FAQ, the organization pushed out a monthly email marketing campaign highlighting donors and demonstrating the impact of the project on students and the community as a whole. In 12 months, the campaign closed with $1 million in pledges.
Tell me why
Are you educating your potential donors on why your mission matters? Do donors have all the information they need to consider supporting your cause?
If you suspect inadequate storytelling might be keeping you non-profit from reaching its potential, we’ll take assess your recent communications a no cost and give you some tips and suggestions for making more of your marketing plan.