How many times have you wondered if marketing your charitable causes actually leads to donations and new donors? I’ve often thought that I’m simply wasting my time asking for this and that on social media, despite receiving responses on and off. Fortunately, even if I am doing this wrong, I’m the kind of person who will NEVER STOP asking.
All this is good and fine, but what about the future? I am sure we are all pouring over our year planner, discussing scheduling, time tables, appointments, events and campaigns. Question is: what is your strategy going to be? Keep in mind that we are now moving into a new generation of donors. I cannot rely on donations from my loyal contributors at the old age home anymore, they may not even be with us anymore! Neither can we rely on those up and coming entrepeneurs and business owners who supported us throughout the years, many of them are retiring, handing over management to younger people. We are in unchartered waters, people!! And we need to GET WITH THE NEW GENERATION’S PROGRAM or we will do like the dinosaurs…..NonProfits will become extinct!!
Zach Shefska is Product Manager at Fundraising Report Card, a division of MarketSmart. The Fundraising Report Card is a free analytics and visualization tool made just for nonprofits…..AND HE IS A MILLENIAL!! But NOT only THAT, he is a millennial with INSIGHT! He wrote the article: How to get Millenials to give to your NonProfit as told by a Millenial [Shefska:2016] for re.charity and shares his ideas on how we can involve the new generation in our efforts to market our NPO’s and NGO’s. His pointers are invaluable and a MUST READ.
You remember a while back people were in a frenzy about SnapChat? Well, millennials live on ShapChat, but that is not necessarily the place to engage them in charity. Shefska says it so well in his article: “If I (the 21 year old millennial) received a “selfie” from a representative of any organization, for-profit or nonprofit, I would immediately be “creeped out.” The saying “any publicity is good publicity” generally holds true, but you don’t really want some 20-something-year-old taking a screenshot your snapchat selfie and reposting it on Twitter with the hashtag “#omgwhy.” That just isn’t where your time, money or energy should be spent.” [Shefska:2016]
I had to smile, isn’t he brilliant? He also holds that millennials are so busy that they simply don’t have time to read long e-mails and will much rather skim over their Twitter account than settle down in front of the old laptop and strain their eyes for half an hour to read a pleading mail from a charity. These ‘skimming’ moments should be used effectively and NonProfits will do well to work on the visual presentation of their posts and campaigns. Their tweets and instragram posts need to POP, so that the young people can take note.
Three important things need to be remembered about millennials:
- They want to SEE where there contributions are going
- They like to donate when it’s CONVENIENT for them
- You will need to ASK them to donate [Shefska:2016]
I know most of the organizations I work with already do this type of follow-through; keeping the donor involved until the donation reached its destination. But the way we present our campaigns, the way we ASK must change. Social media is here to stay, people, and we can do but one thing – use it and USE IT CONSTRUCTIVELY!
In the end it is simply common sense; the world changed, the people changed, and we have to adapt our strategies if we want to stay in business.
I urge you to read Zach Shefska’s article in full. If you don’t, you will miss a wonderful opportunity of getting to know your younger audience. He gives very important pointers at how to approach the millennials. Click here to read the article.
SHEFSKA, Zach. 2016. How to get Millenials to give to your NonProfit as told by a Millenial. [Web:] www.recharity.ca [Date of Access:] November 23, 2016.