Give Good to Good – Our Gift this Holiday Season

 

After any new administration comes into the White House, everyone begins to wonder what will change.

As a consulting firm that services many in the government sector, we also provide consultancy to myriad non-profits.

We say what we mean on our website- that we love and are passionate about non-profits. Non-profits help the disadvantaged, they work to make a better life for at-risk youths.  Non-profits work behind the scenes to create and persuade policy that impacts the poor and the homeless. They fundraise to improve the quality of life and find cures for those faced with life-threatening and/or life-altering diseases.

Non-profits work to clean up and sustain the vital resources that our planet provides. And they identify ways to provide nourishment to the 842 million people around the world who don’t have enough to eat.

We could not be more proud of the work we do for our clients such as the Center for Law & Social Policy, LeadingAge, and the Childhood League Center. Nor could we be more inspired by the missions they strive to fulfill every day.

And we could not be more proud to work with our amazingly creative as well as genuinely good-hearted partners at Kardia Design Studio.  We shine all year round because of our work with them.

With the new presidency, we know that numerous government programs could be impacted through budget cuts and downsizing.  We also know that this means that many Americans will need to rely on non-profits to obtain the vital services they need.

With the new presidency, we know that numerous government programs could be impacted through budget cuts and downsizing.  We also know that this means that many Americans will need to rely on non-profits to obtain the vital services they need. The ability for a non-profit to make positive change only occurs when they are able to inspire supporters to give their time and money.

Our hope is that in response to the election, many will give to deserving, honest charities that make positive, tangible impact in our world. Those that care about creating a fun diversion for children with cancer, those that help ensure equal rights for individuals – no matter the sexual orientation of who they love or want to marry.

But we also know that some may be reluctant to give because they don’t know what will happen to the economy.

We also realize that some non-profits may be fearful of spending precious donor dollars on necessary materials such as a robust website, wireframes to plan the direction of their site, or the necessary digital strategy to bring in donations and inspire potential volunteers.

And that’s where we may be able to help.

We offer a program called Give Good 2 Good.  Through Give Good 2 Good, we provide pro bono web/digital strategy consultancy to deserving non-profits.

Interested? Submit your non-profit for consideration using our contact form

Black Lives Matter, White Lives Matter, All Lives Matter. Latino Lives and Asian Lives Matter. The lives of Jews, the Lives of Muslims, the Lives of Christians, Matter. Again, All Lives Matter. All people, regardless of skin color, their wealth or lack of, their disabilities and abilities- have a meaningful life

Caught in the Web Consulting would like to wish EVERYONE Joy and Peace at the Holidays and throughout the New Year.

10 Things Your Non-Profit Can Learn from the 2016 Presidential Campaign

No matter what side of the aisle your political views are on, we can all agree that this year’s election has been full of shocking surprises as well as excitement. The 2008 Presidential campaign marked a profound change to the way that political campaigns were run. It was all about the emergence of Web 2.0, email marketing, and analytics.

In 2008, the Obama campaign ushered in a new, fresh way of communicating to audiences-especially those that had never voted before.  

While much has changed (see what we did there?) since 2008, the politics of campaigning remain the same. However, the platforms to run a strong campaign in continue to evolve.

Here are 10 things your non-profit can learn from the 2016 Presidential Campaign.

1.) Free press is good press.

Just like presidential candidates, many organizations spend a ton of money on paid media. This year’s election has proven that earned media is out there. For free. Just see the below screen capture. While we wouldn’t suggest being as controversial as some candidates have been in this election, we do encourage making appropriately-trained spokespersons available to the media. In addition, comment on blogs or social media to encourage more attention to your work. Campaigns and candidates make news when they propose change, make a statement, and call for action.

Earned Media

2.) Get a text buddy.

While many non-profits have begun to implement texting programs, they seem to be limited to fundraising or a response to a specific event (for ex: The Red Cross’ CTA to donate blood or money after the horrific tragedy at the Pulse Nightclub). One thing that we’ve seen that we love is the way that some of the presidential candidates have been using text to carry on a ‘conversation’ with a supporter. By texting with ‘Jess’– subscribers are able to see candid photos, see exclusive YouTube videos, share clever quotes and stories with friends, and of course- give money too.

jess

3.) Strong UX means everything.

One of the things I love best about political campaigns is to check out the candidate’s online donation form. An online donation typically happens as an immediate response to an appeal someone receives via email that they see through a commercial or today—in a text message they receive. As mobile technology has improved, more people have become comfortable donating money online. Because giving is generally an immediate reaction to an appeal, it is imperative that your donation page is optimized for a prompt transaction with clear calls to action, minimal distractions and a simple form that only requires you to enter as little information as possible. As a reminder, here are some best practices that we recommend.

4.) Tell a good story.

Did you see Michelle Obama’s speech to kick off the 2016 Democratic Convention?  That amazing speech. Again, no matter what your political affiliation, everyone can agree that the story she shared was compelling, passionate, and most importantly, genuine. Authenticity of a candidate is what can determine who current and prospect voters will fix in the circle for on their election ballot. Take time to craft out meaningful stories to truly express who you are as an organization, and why your mission matters. That being said – your stories should not just be about your organization. Tell the stories of those you serve and those that help you serve.  Having and displaying empathy will resonate with your target audience and improve your brand image.

5.) More than just a tweet.

There are some candidates out there that just can’t seem to get enough of Twitter. They post day and night. Retweet without hesitation. They ask for congratulations when they think they predicted a tragedy that has occurred.  But there is one way that candidates are using Twitter that should be considered by your non-profit.  Twitter and CBS formed a partnership to stream CBSN’s live coverage from the Republican and Democratic National Conventions on Twitter. So far, the audiences have been HUUUUGE (see what we did there?). Consider live streaming of your organization’s gala, walk, or other ceremonies that are of interest to your constituents. And, don’t forget to release your late-breaking news through Twitter. Remember when everyone would scramble to ESPN to read the Breaking News ticker? Well, no one does that anymore. They can read their favorite sports journalists’ Twitter feed to get the latest news on LeBron James, or on the next player to be released or traded in the NFL.

6.) Got a platform?

One of the biggest complaints of one of the top candidates in the 2016 presidential election cycle has been a lot of talk with no substance. Your non-profit cannot underestimate the power of substance through content. A non-profit’s messaging should be robust, thoughtful content that clearly differentiates your mission from others. It should educate those interested in learning more about your work, and why your current and prospective members should support your efforts. The more polished content you can distribute through your blog, frequent but strategic posts on social media, or effective newsletters; the more opportunities you give current and potential supporters to engage with your cause.

7.) Join Us. OK. How?

We often see non-profits offer call to actions such as Join Us. Typically, this means joining an email list. Political campaigns take this a step further by offering prospective and current supporters myriad options for truly joining their campaign efforts. This is done by providing options to volunteer on election day, to sign a pledge, to attend a local event, rally, or fundraiser, or- to just stay connected through social media. Make sure that your non-profit clearly outlines all of the ways your audience can truly join you and your mission.

Join Us. OK. How

8.) Tag. You’re it.

A clever tagline makes campaigns memorable. When considering a tagline for your non-profit, make sure that the concept works with your organization’s key messaging. Consistency is key. If the tagline doesn’t relate to your overall mission, scrap it. Or, make sure that it is truly geared to a specific campaign or fundraising effort, and not your organization as a whole.  A clever tagline should evoke emotion as well as action. Think verbs. Not only nouns: Explore, Empower, Save.

9.) Small dollars add up to big ones.

We call this the Bernie Sanders effect. By now, you’re probably well aware that the average donation given to the Bernie Sanders campaign online was $27.00. Back to our point about taglines for just a minute…The Bernie Sanders campaign was all built on the concept of paid for by Bernie, not the billionaires. As someone who positioned himself as not one of the typical, wealthy politicians, not someone funded by super PACs, or corporations—the small dollar ask worked and was authentic to his stance. This effort created a profound message to small donors that earned Sanders tremendous loyalty and audience engagement. Non profits, take note.

10.) Analytics Matter.

During our work with the USO, we had the amazing honor of working with Dan Siroker. If you don’t know him, he was the analytics guru behind the Obama 2008 convention. A Google alum, Dan’s data found that a picture of Obama’s family with a button that said “Learn More” had a 40% higher chance of increasing the number of sign ups than buttons reading “sign up” or “join us now.And for all of you data wonks, be sure to check this out!

Don’t overeducate. Like politics, people seek out organizations because of their already held passions or beliefs. And while education is key for allowing individuals to learn about your cause, it takes motivation to get them to act in response to their passion. A truly powerful campaign reduces barriers against taking tangible action, and increases the incentive to take action. People expect a non-profit to need help. Give them a way to provide it.

Let’s be stronger together and make
campaigns great again. Contact us today!

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