Business as Unusual for Nonprofits

This week marks the third of “work from home.” While our lives changed dramatically during the first two, it seems that people are finally settling in and adjusting to the new normal.

Of course, more has changed than simply where we work from. The economy has taken a hit and the curve of the virus hasn’t peaked yet. But organizations can’t stand still. They must move forward, in a way that makes sense.

So what to do now? 

Don’t go dark. Timing and tone matter.

If you haven’t already, send an email to your constituents and let them know how your organization is conducting activities during this time. People need to know you’re up and running, even if operations have shifted. How are those you serve doing? How is your team handling the situation? Perhaps there’s a compelling story you can share (also via social media).

If your organization’s mission is being impacted by the virus (perhaps the people you serve are particularly at risk), then an ask may be appropriate. But be mindful of the challenges everyone is facing—tone and timing matter. And while your ask may be sent as an email now, in the weeks ahead, a mailing might be appropriate.

Look back and think ahead.

Certain projects you’ve been working on may be on hold or canceled (such as your gala). As a result, you might find time to fill during working hours.

Overall

  • If you postponed or canceled your 2020 gala, how can you still connect with donors and fundraise?
  • Now that your audience is spending much more time at home, how can you best reach them?
    • Social Media
    • Direct Mail
    • Electronic and/or print newsletter
    • Paid Advertising
    • Search Engine Marketing
  • Take time and assess your fundraising and marketing efforts during the past year. Did they drive the results you want? What worked and what can be improved?
  • Which fundraising and marketing efforts have been on the back burner? Can you move forward with any of them now? 
  • What content and campaigns can you begin working on now to ensure you’re able to leap forward once the economy begins to gain traction? 

Social Media

  • What can you post to reassure supporters that service recipients are ok?
  • What can you share that shows your team in action, even during this challenging time?
  • Do you have a plan in place for the months ahead?
  • Do you have content in place and ready to go once the current crisis passes?

E-Newsletter

  • Is your list up to date and segmented in a way that’s beneficial?
  • Do you have an outline or schedule for upcoming content?
  • Do you have content in place and ready to go once the current crisis passes?
  • Do you have a plan in place for the months ahead?

Website

  • Is the information on your site up to date? 
  • What changes will make it easier for donors and supporters to understand what you do and why they should care?
  • Are the plugins and your security certificate up to date?

Annual Report

  • How will the current crisis impact your theme and content?
  • Which stories will you want to share?

Here’s how we are helping our clients during this time:

  • Writing COVID-19 emails, posts, and letters.
  • Promoting COVID-19 response webinars.
  • Serving as their outsourced marketing and creative department.
  • Updating websites with pop-up banners and information pertaining to the pandemic.
  • Brainstorming new ways to connect with donors and constituents.
  • Moving forward with back-burner campaigns and projects.
  • Getting a head start on post-crisis projects and campaigns.

Resources to help with any need.

Besides fundraising and marketing, what other challenges or needs do you have? Our vast network includes great resources that can help solve just about any problem. 

If we can be of service to you during this time, please reach out.