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Activate Your Audiences Like a Boss: Partnership Strategy Tips for Nonprofits

Activate Your Audiences Like a Boss: Partnership Strategy Tips for Nonprofits

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As we work to navigate these unparalleled times, strategic planning is still top of mind for many organizations. Accordingly, Accelerist has created a four-part series to help you analyze and elevate your partnership strategy in 2021. In case you missed the first two blogs, you can find out more information about prospecting here, and positioning your organization’s value here

In this third installment, we’re sharing insights on how your charity or nonprofit can best identify and activate your audiences to inspire change. 

In today’s climate of cluttered marketing and cause-washing, knowing the motivations, needs and engagement preferences of your audiences (donors, event attendees, volunteers) will help you differentiate your organization and raise critical funds. We’ve identified three key areas to focus on to ensure you’re activating your audiences, like a boss!

1.    Identify 

Developing specific customer or donor personas can help you to raise more money from current donors, help you identify potential new donors, and find companies that are looking to connect with your specific supporters. To drill down on your specific donor audience, and make sure your information extends beyond donation history and demographics, take these five types of analytics into account:

  • Situational – why is this audience supporting you?
  • Demographics – who is this audience?
  • Psychographics – what are their attitudes and beliefs?
  • Multicultural – how to be mindful of cultural nuances?
  • Interests & Knowledge – how much does our audience engage with our cause?

2.    Activate 

Once you’ve identified your audience, it’s time to activate or adjust your organization’s strategies, design, and communication style to speak to your audiences’ greatest needs. Focus on four basic business elements to maximize your activation reach:  

Strategy: Design or refine your programs, events, campaigns, or partnerships in a way that aligns with your target audience’s passions and interests.

User Experience: Evaluate your supporters’ needs or challenges and use them as a starting point for designing solutions and campaigns to personalize messages that resonate with supporters.

Communication: Tailor your content to speak directly to your audience and target different channels to meet your supports where they already communicate. 

Cultivation: Build a tiered recognition plan to highlight your supporters. However, make sure to be mindful of their recognition preferences to ensure this is received well. To find more activation techniques, check out our Activate Like A Boss Playbook

3.    Evangelize 

There is a huge difference between supporters who love your organization and those who simply engage with your organization. To ensure you are converting your donors into brand ambassadors, consider how to apply the below tactics to your organization: 

  1. Ask For Feedback - this is gold when adjusting or evolving strategy
  2. Deliver Amazing Experiences - low-friction, easy to navigate experiences drive the greatest conversion
  3. Create Loyalty Supporter Programs - explore an incentive program that generates long-term support
  4. Value-Based Support - offer impact messaging, matching gifts, or other items of value
  5. Implement A Referral Program - this is not just for peer-to-peer fundraising, give it a try!
  6. Personalize Their Experience - everyone loves to feel special! 
  7. “Just Because” Gifts - remember birthdays/special events and write thank yous! 
  8. Inform Supporters - supporters don’t just want to be solicited, they want to be informed, so keep them in the know all year long
  9. Empower Their Voice - offer supports turnkey toolkits to help you easily amplify a campaign, event or partnership through their networks 
  10. Ask for User-Generated Content: engage your supporters to create and share an authentic story

Guest contributions represent the personal opinions and insights of the authors and may not reflect the views or opinions of Imagine Canada.

Accelerist is the leader in social impact partnership technology, supporting hundreds of brands and charitable organizations in finding and growing their partnerships with each other. For more tools and resources about purpose-driven partnerships, please visit the Accelerist Insights page

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Photo credit: Youth Centres of Calgary (YCC).
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