How NPOs can Grow Their Audience and Increase Donations with Digital Promotions

4 minute read

Second Street Guest Contributor

The majority of marketing teams are faced with the challenge of having to do more with less, but this is especially true for non-profit organizations (NPOs) where resources are tight, and teams are often small. The aim for any NPO though regardless of size is to spread awareness of their cause, grow their audience, and ultimately increase donations.

By incorporating digital promotions into your marketing strategy, you’ll have a great chance of achieving your goals.

Grow your audience

While the channels you use will inevitably impact the success of your marketing, they won’t mean anything unless you have the lists in place to leverage. After all, the more people you have on your lists, the more likely it is that your audience take action and achieve the desired results.

Digital promotions are an excellent tool to drive list growth and increase your opted-in audience. For example, as an NPO you could run a quiz relating to your cause and add mobile and email opt-in fields to drive growth in your opted-in databases. By implementing interactive promotions in your fundraising strategy, not only will your audience grow but it’s likely that the quality of your audience will also improve as they’ll have a genuine interest in your cause.

Another effective method for database growth is sweepstakes. As they have one of the lowest barriers of entry, they often generate a large volume of entries. However, to generate entrants that are genuinely invested in your cause and are likely to become loyal donors in the future, your prize needs to be directly related to your cause. If you offer a generic prize such as a cash sum, your entrants will be filled with people who are most interested in the prize itself than your cause.

Encourage social sharing

Social sharing is a key component of growing your audience as it enables you to tap into a new group of people who aren’t already sat on your database. For NPOs, social sharing can be utilized in a variety of ways.

Firstly, if a donor donates to your cause, you can encourage them to share this on their social channels in a bid that they may inspire their friends and family to follow suit. However, social sharing isn’t limited to donors, you can also introduce social sharing as part of your digital promotions.

In this instance, you could offer entrants extra chances if they share their participation on their social channels or invite their friends to participate. Or, run a voting contest whereby the winner is selected based on the number of votes. By encouraging your participants to share their entry on their social channels and ask for votes from their peers, you’ll not only boost engagement, but will also tap into the entrant’s network and broaden your audience. To reap even more reward from the contest, make it a photo contest and you’ll get user-generated content (UGC) which can be used in future marketing campaigns.

Understand your supporters

As an NPO, your database will consist of various groups – volunteers, donors, constituents, however, regardless of which category they fall into, you need to understand who they are and what they expect from you.

When targeting your donors, you need to personalize your communications as much as possible in order to better your chances of securing a donation. To do so, you need to understand more about them to ensure your message resonates. This is where first-party data plays a pivotal role.

To deepen your understanding of your donors, quizzes are an excellent tool for collecting first party data. By developing a quiz relating to timely topic, you can include questions to better understand their habits, such as channels they use to interact with your organization or which aspect of your cause they feel the strongest about. All these additional insights will be invaluable in your marketing efforts, will help you build meaningful relationships with your donors and supporters, and ultimately move potential donors through the funnel from anonymous users to known profiles.

Incentivize donations

Offering incentives for donations is likely to increase donation volume tenfold and requires little effort on your part. The incentives on offer don’t have to be expensive, they can include something as simple as a piece of free merchandise, a discount from your online store, or reward for repeat donations. Interactive content such as gamification tools are a fantastic way of incentivizing donations and can encourage participation through badges, a leader board, or a points-based system.

Ready to introduce digital promotions into your fundraising strategy?

Book a one-to-one meeting with one of our experts to see how Upland Second Street can help you grow your audience and increase donations.

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