Build Donor Loyalty Through Simple Local Marketing Efforts
Does your nonprofit organization struggle when it comes to executing cohesive campaigns at a local level? If so, it’s time to undertake a major shift in marketing processes and content creation.
Local marketing is a struggle for many large nonprofit organizations with distributed affiliates. But building trust in your organization – a key factor in maintaining donor loyalty – depends on strengthening local presence. Here are some strategies to support local nonprofit marketing, followed by a discussion of how distributed marketing software can help.
- Assess Processes Related to Campaign Execution
Start at the beginning by taking a close look at workflow practices. Are there significant time lags due to multiple sign-off requirements? Does the corporate team spend excess time recreating content to fulfill requests from local chapters? Are local marketers able to customize branded campaign materials, or do they end up creating their own (off-brand) versions? Once you’ve identified weak spots, you can start course correction.
- Enable Local Chapters to Access Branded Campaign Content
When planning a global or national fundraising campaign, make sure that local chapters have access to branded content and materials. For example, Dress for Success, an international not-for-profit dedicated to helping women succeed in the workplace, has seen a 400% year-over-year increase in shoe donations as a result of their Giving Tuesday campaigns. The organization has affiliates in 25 countries and most U.S. states. Corporate marketing created resources that help affiliates seamlessly activate the campaign at the local level, according to npENGAGE – a big factor in the campaign’s success.
- Perform Targeted, Personalized Outreach
Taking it a step further, enable local affiliates to customize content to better reach and engage target audiences. Tie in relevant content to nurture the donor relationship. For example, sharing region-specific statistics on the local impact of past fundraising campaigns is the type of information that can motivate increased giving at the local level. Donors – similar to today’s consumer – want to be treated as individuals, not lumped in with the masses.
- Maintain a Strong Relationship with Local Media Outlets
Are you hosting a fundraising event (e.g., 5k, festival, cocktail gala)? Did a local affiliate have notably high fundraising results? Is there a local human-interest angle, e.g., a family whose circumstances have improved as a direct result of your organization’s work? Encourage local marketing leaders and volunteers to maintain regular contact with local broadcast stations and newspapers. Local media outlets are typically happy to cover goodwill-generating news. Don’t forget to share coverage through social media, email alerts and newsletters.
- Consider Distributed Marketing Software to Tie It All Together
In a perfect world, affiliates take corporate campaigns, tailor the message and content to fit their local audience, and execute quickly without a hitch. Rarely is that perfect world a reality, however.
That’s why many large nonprofits with geographically dispersed chapters have embraced marketing resource management (MRM) technologies such as distributed marketing (DM) software. MRM provides centralized control over brand and marketing assets. Distributed marketing platforms with functionality that betters align local marketing efforts with corporate standards and goals are also referred to as local marketing automation (LMA) solutions.
While budget constraints are a fact of life for most nonprofits, benefits tied to reduced waste, enhanced brand recognition and improved fundraising performance can end up providing significant ROI. Plus, there are plenty of cost-effective software solutions on the market that are ideal for nonprofit budgets.
Here are ways that marketing management systems can support the strategies discussed above:
- Gain speed and scalability: LMA/DM software helps distributed organizations roll out campaigns with speed and agility not possible with traditional manual processes. Campaigns can be developed and then scaled to meet the demand of multiple local marketers.
- Provide central access: You can provide instant access to everything from brand guidelines and best practices to customizable templates to data lists and media contacts.
- Build brand awareness: With better access to customizable content, local chapters are far less likely to resort to creating their own off-brand materials.
- Nurture donor relationships: Communicate with donors on a more personal level with highly targeted messaging based on local donor data profiles.
Supporting local marketing efforts is a challenge for many nonprofits. Start by evaluating current practices, and consider whether marketing technology has a place in your local strategy. If you struggle with lagging time-to-market when it comes to implementing local fundraising campaigns, “rogue” content creation by regional affiliates, poor brand recognition, or any of these other signs that local marketing is a problem, you might benefit from LMA.
Strata Company, a Greater Philadelphia area marketing and technology firm, has been helping nonprofits reach, connect and engage with donors for nearly 25 years. Our technology platforms better align corporate goals with local marketing efforts, allowing nonprofits to increase their donor base and giving amounts. Contact us today to discuss your organization’s goals and challenges.
About Katrina Denk
Possessing over 10 years of experience leading strategic and tactical marketing efforts of some of the area’s most respected businesses, Marketing Director Katrina Denk brings a wide breadth of knowledge to every initiative she oversees. Whether it’s a product launch or a multi-touch email campaign, she understands all the ins and outs of the marketing mix. In her free time, Katrina is an enthusiastic world traveler and animal lover.