Use This No-Fail Content Plan to Boost Donations

The typical advice on how to get donations through content focuses heavily on arranging website content and simplifying the donation process.

Good website content that makes donating a snap is of course essential.

But the end-donation process is the last step to consider.

Reposition your donation button all you want; if the right people aren’t getting to your website, there’s not a lot of point in optimizing it.

Let’s look at some key content principles that will get people hopping to the donation button like grasshoppers to a hibiscus.

Slice and dice (in a nice way)

It’s easy to think that everyone and her sister wants to donate to your cause. Sad to say, but this just isn’t true.

This is why campaigns to “get the word out” and “share info” can produce lacklustre returns in the donations department.

The answer for your particular nonprofit needs to be strategic but agile.

For example, which type of person already has a good connection to your cause and has money?

Nonprofits that work on seniors issues may target older Gen Xers or young Boomers who take care of elderly parents.

For organizations that focus on youth issues, the ideal donor may be younger parents who empathize with youth in difficulty.

But this is just a basic guideline. Figure out which donor is the most logical fit and go from there.

Find your who’s who

To create effective content, you must get into the head of your donor. And this doesn’t mean guessing at why they think you’re great.

Listen on social media, talk to your staff, and get some one-on-one interviews.

First, you need this basic info:

  • Background
  • Demographics
  • Personality and social media behaviour
  • Philanthropic goals
  • Obstacles to donating

But you should also chat about their concerns and dreams. What challenges do they face every day? What kind of connection can you form with them?

When you discover their passions and ideals, you can align your content with the same values. Plus, this information is gold when it comes to writing your donation content.

Find your mission possible

You have your donor persona pinned down. Fantabulous. Now, it’s time to craft a theme for your content to make your cause appealing.

Does your cause make people jump up and dance, or kind of just sit there, like a cup of tepid tea?

If you find it hard to light a fire under people’s butts, here are four ways to produce a “mission” for your content to attract prospective donors:

Useful: How does your content help your donors? Health tips for baby boomers or anti-bullying information for parents are just a couple examples of useful content.

A useful content marketing mission for a nonprofit youth agency could be: “We’re on a mission to make you the best parent you can be.”

Unique: What is different about your content mission? Perhaps your content looks at issues in an innovative way, or maybe you marry two unexpected concepts.

A unique content marketing mission would be: “We’re on a mission to put a smile on your face with funny content about preserving green space.”

Urgent: How can you give people a reason to read your content right now? Do they have a pressing problem they need solved? Do you have a deadline or other method of scarcity you can use?

An example would be “We’re on a mission to give you the latest updates on animal rights issues so you can take action today.”

Ultra-specific: Missions that are very specific are easy to get behind.

Here, you can borrow from your program mission or create a specific mission just for your content: “We’re on a mission to feature the stories of 1000 inner-city children who benefited from camp.”

The more you can frame your content within a specific mission, the more people can get on board with what you do.

Be a nice briber

The email list is how you can determine people’s degree of engagement with your organization. In a sense, it’s your golden ticket to donation-land.

Your email list is where you really engage with people. Because unless you manufacture your own Ice Bucket viral campaign, social media just won’t cut it for you.

In this step, you need to brainstorm ways to get people to sign up with some kind of “ethical bribe”:
– A cookbook
– A series of cute or funny “brighten-your-day” videos
– Health tips for seniors

Or any other type of content that makes sense for your organization and your content mission.

Your goal should be to create a “bribe” that is useful, unique or fascinating and not just a laundry list of what you do (aka, your annual report).

Get hopping

Although this list is far from an exhaustive strategy, you get an idea of how content that gets donations has to be highly strategic and aimed at a target audience.

It takes work, but this work really pays off when you see the donation power of carefully crafted content.

Because the last thing you want is to put so much time and energy into boring bleck that doesn’t drive your mission.

Want a more in-depth plan? Sign up for my newsletter and get a free copy of Your Quickstart Content Marketing Plan.