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If you’re reading this post, it’s likely you are trying to keep your head above water with all of the various hats you wear. Working for a nonprofit can be overwhelming. It’s not just your job, it’s your passion and, for some, your identity. The stakes go up, the pressure is on, and now you’re paralyzed by the sheer number of things you have to do to motivate current and potential givers.
Take a breath. You’re not alone. By minimizing and strategizing your efforts you can work smarter not harder with smaller routine commitments. Here is a list of 5 simple routines that will help drive engagement through the roof.
I’ve been there: you look at all the groups you have and realize many of them have fallen behind being communicated to, but the idea of trying to tackle that list makes you want to rock back and forth in a corner somewhere whimpering softly. Don’t let it scare you. Put on your calendar a blocked out sacred time once a week to work on developing communication to those forgotten list. Getting caught up in attracting new donors and allowing attrition in your current donors will erode your list of loyal advocates. Take charge one group at a time!
Take an afternoon once a month, study, compile and share what you find with your team. That’s it, no extra steps. Raising awareness isn’t just for your cause, having data awareness will guide you and your team’s strategies to make decisions that will have the greatest impact that is specific for your audience. The more data you and your team share together the faster this chain reaction will lead to better strategy in reaching and inspiring your current and future givers.
Get used to saying no, or at least don’t commit right away. There are always more ideas than what you can actually execute. If chasing this idea means that you will compromise the relationships in your current campaign or initiative it’s better to say no. By saying no, you are allowing you and your team time to critically think about what is going to have the greatest impact in reaching more givers to your cause. By establishing a routine of holding off commitment, you will free up your time to focus on what counts.
Before that email, newsletter, or post goes out, establish a routine to ask yourself, “is this personalized?” Unfortunately, silver bullets and easy buttons don’t exist. Everyone is bombarded by communication… so how have you made yours unique? You can do this by setting up tracks and triggers in your email communication, sending handwritten notes rather than a typed one, or by communicating what you know to be close to your audience’s heart. Know your audience and engage their interests. By understanding how your audience feels and connecting with that, you are building a personal connection that grows into deeper loyalties and commitments.
In a magical world where everything goes as planned sure you follow through perfectly on your campaign from start to finish, but inevitably, life happens and you’ve already jumped off the project in the most crucial and vulnerable spot. You spend months thinking up your angle, perhaps thousands of dollars to secure your booth and print everything up, but return home, maybe send out an email, call it a day, then wonder why it wasn’t successful this year. Don’t let the pressure and business keep you from following through. Similar to saying no, this is a routine of saying yes to follow through on a committed project. If you’re interested in a more specific application, check out the post: 10 Tips for Attending Conferences
Instead of focusing on the entirety of the universe of your nonprofit, make a difference through simple effective routines that will strategically drive giving through the roof without the panic attacks.
Have you found an amazing routine? Don’t keep it to yourself! Tweet @VirtuousCRM with the hashtag #routine.