Integrated Multichannel Marketing
Give Your Supporters Something to Respond to
If you’re a fundraising professional who’s looking for new donors, better retention rates, and strong revenue growth (really, what self-respecting development officer isn’t these days?), it’s time to learn about using multichannel tactics to keep your relationships growing.
Multichannel marketing refers to the practice of interacting with customers using a combination of indirect and direct communication channels—websites, social media, email, printed pieces, mailings, events, and more that enable customers to take action—using the channel of their choice.
Sounds complicated, but the underlying principle is simple: Tell a unified story that your donors actually care about, tell it in the places where they will see it, and tell it often.
Here are three concepts to remember when strategizing your donor outreach methods.
Too often, organizations create messages based on ideas and agendas that they want to promote, using media they want to use to talk to their supporters.
Multichannel marketing flips this around to put donors first. What ideas do your constituents care about, what stories do they want to hear, and what medium do they actually use? You’ll need to tailor your content, message, and media choices to suit them, not yourself.
For every message you want to send, consider using multiple (if not all) communications channels available to you. If your healthcare organization received an award for outstanding community service, for example, tell your audience through direct mail, press releases, TV, email, social media, text message, and on your website.
The goal is to reach people where and how they want to be reached, and for those who see the announcement on multiple channels, your message is amplified and strengthened.
This is where things get interesting. Your marketing and communications team should work across the company to create integrated systems.
- Theme Integration. Every outreach piece, and every person in the organization, should use a consistent look and messaging that tells the same story and uses reinforcing images across multiple formats to strengthen your brand.
- Processes. Work to create a seamless sequence of constituent interactions. For example, if a supporter calls in response to an appeal, how should the team respond, and what sort of follow-up is appropriate?
- Measurement. How will you measure success? Decide on this before you even launch your outreach strategy, and be sure to focus on net return as opposed to immediate donations.
Ready to Try?
When you tell your story consistently across a variety of channels, you allow your audience to get to know you and your key messages. Your nonprofit becomes easily recognized. Your voice becomes stronger. Your presence becomes familiar.