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Mix marketing and fundraising for ‘perfect storm’

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Michele Savoldi

Michele Savoldi

Michele Savoldi

In today’s competitive and stretched economy, nonprofit organizations need more than just a good mission to stand out above the rest.

To support the cause, organizations must be top-of-mind with potential donors to strongly compete for limited dollars or even survival. Successful nonprofits accomplish this by creating a “perfect storm,” integrating their mission with the art of personal connection.

The perfect storm begins with defining the donor. Identifying a specific donor demographic will keep all efforts focused delivering the best rate of return.

Once a donor group has been established, in-depth market research should be performed. Learn everything possible about the donor group, such as their giving profile and reasons they give, their key influences, their lifestyles and media behaviors.

Use these findings to target donors through well-defined marketing and public-relations strategies.

Understand the donor’s perspective. Look at your organization and your marketing efforts from the point of view of your audiences.

Modern donors educate themselves on causes and are extremely savvy with their giving choices. They need to see their donation at work and want to make sure they are making a difference.

Because of this, a personal connection between the donor and the mission is essential to nonprofit success. Personal connection opportunities should concentrate on the essence of the mission, making it tangible to everyone.

Make it personal. By enabling personal connection opportunities, donors are touched by seeing the mission bring the cause to life, creating satisfaction and loyalty.

They will not only want to re-experience the connection, but will want to introduce others to the cause, thereby becoming the biggest advocate and assisting with awareness.

Through word of mouth, a virtuous cycle begins – generating continuous movement, attracting more donors, initiating more introductions and so on.

Crafting a perfect storm should produce successful results. Inviting donors to develop a personal connection with the mission should form a virtuous cycle. Constantly building awareness, loyalty and funding, the perfect storm should make nonprofits top of mind in any competitive economy.


Michele Savoldi is a nonprofit marketing consultant based in Columbus, Ohio and an Affiliate with Shoestring Creative Group (http://www.shoestringgroup.com/). Michele can be reached at affiliates@shoestringgroup.com or 1-888-835-6236.

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