If you’re working for a non-profit, you know how important it is to get not just donors, but volunteers to execute your projects.
Imagine if your website was doing the work of raising funds and gaining support for you. You’d like that, right?
Let’s take a look at exactly how you can turn your website into a fundraising and support-generating machine, with a practical example – Youngstars Foundation.
First of all, what is Youngstars Foundation and what do they do?
It’s a community that is deliberately developing youths for leadership, governance and impactful entrepreneurship. Basically, they’re doing the Lord’s work in Africa, and are currently operating in Nigeria and Ghana.
Now, let’s jump right in.
Developing A Website That Connects
The first step to getting your website to help you achieve your marketing goals is to develop a website that is designed for that purpose.
What does that mean? It means if you want your website to raise funds, develop a website that encourages donors to give. If you want your website to gain volunteers, then your website should be designed to encourage participation.
Check out Youngstars Foundation’s website. They’ve done a good job in educating us about what they do right from the homepage. And you’d see one of their flagship programs – CANVASSITY on the homepage.
However, there are a few ways they can improve their overall user experience, to keep website visitors engaged enough to take action. Here are 3 things they can do, especially to their homepage
- Improve Cognitive Fluency: We’ve talked about how white space can increase your website conversions. Our brains are wired to engage with something that is easier to process, so it is important for Youngstars Foundation to make their homepage a lot easier on the eyes.
- Focus on One Item at A Time: For some reason, it feels like the website was giving too much information at a time. Which makes it a bit difficult for website visitors to focus. Check out Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, see how they take your attention from one point to another?
- Improve Participation: So, we mentioned how Youngstars is actively promoting its CANVASSITY project on the homepage. However, when you click through, with the intention of signing up, you won’t see a form to fill.
In fact, the only form you’d find on the whole website is a form to become a member. Now, that’s a bit problematic, because it seems like they’re asking for marriage without asking for dates
Here’s what I mean, you would normally want to get updated about their work first, and get more information about the foundation with regular updates before you decide to either becoming a member or supporting the community, right? So why isn’t there a sign-up form for a simple newsletter?
Developing A Content Marketing Funnel
92% of non-profit marketers are using content marketing for their organizations. However, the ones that are effective at it (only 25%), are the ones that have documented content marketing strategies.
For Youngstars Foundation to be effective at driving participation and gaining support, they need to develop a comprehensive and documented content marketing strategy. Here’s how
A typical content marketing strategy describes a funnel.
- At the top of the funnel, you attract and educate
- At the middle of the funnel, you engage
- At the bottom of the funnel, you convert.
Let’s dig a little deeper with Youngstars Foundation
- Top of the funnel: How is Youngstars attracting and engaging its target market? Well, they’re active on Facebook and Twitter. And they’re doing a good job of promoting their projects.
They have also done a good job with their Change Maker series on their website.
The only thing I would say they can improve on is to keep their blog updated (their last post was in May). And it doesn’t necessarily have to be change maker stories, but other content that will add value to youths, articles on leadership, governance, and entrepreneurship.
- Middle of the funnel: This is where many organizations miss out. They spend a lot of time and resources generating leads, then screw up by not following up and following through.
And it’s not really difficult to follow through, especially now with email automation.
Youngstars Foundation can set up a series of automated emails or just a simple email newsletter that will continue to engage the youth on their projects, stories, and impact to keep them engaged.
It can also have a separate series of emails for potential donors or supporters that will show them the impact the organization is making.
- Bottom of the funnel: Here is where you seal the deal or ask for the marriage. After several emails from you, people will feel more comfortable and trust your brand, enough that they will take the jump to support your organization, either as a volunteer or a donor.
However, the success of this part hinges on how effective your middle funnel communication is.
Developing Content That Connects
Finally, let’s take a quick look at what sort of content Youngstars Foundation can produce to engage its target market. Be it young people that need their services, volunteers or financial supporters.
Tips: This type of content will engage young professionals that need information on how to lead, innovate, govern, or impact their community.
This kind of content is also important for Youngstars to keep their content distribution channels active, engaging and not overtly promotional.
What will happen when Youngstars Foundation consistently produce How to articles?
- They will increase their brand awareness, as more content will be indexed and found on search engines like Google and Bing
- They will attract even more young people to engage with their website, and find other resources and projects
- They will be taking a step to achieving their mission of empowering young people in Africa, by providing valuable information that will help young African innovate, lead and govern.
Stories: Youngstars Foundation has already started this with the Change Makers series. This type of content does not only empower young people, but it also has the potential to connect with potential donors.
NGOs are generally more compelling when they share stories of how their work and projects have impacted lives and communities.
Youngstars Foundation should invest the time to interview beneficiaries of their programs, so they can share their success stories with others.
In A Nutshell
If you’re a non-profit marketer, focus on
- developing a website that is aesthetically pleasing and designed to achieve your marketing goals
- documenting your content marketing strategy, you would find that you will be more effective
- providing value via your content
Finally, if you need help with executing the ideas highlighted in this article, hit us up via email or phone
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