5-Step Marketing Plan to Boost Donations

As they say, a goal without a plan is just a wish. Use this five-step marketing plan to make that wish come true.

Dedicate 20 minutes every morning to review and make note of your organization’s marketing and fundraising priorities. By the end of the week, you’ll have the building blocks of your marketing plan.

5-Step Nonprofit Marketing Plan

Step 1: Define your marketing goal

You already have the source to find the right place for your organization to begin. Your marketing goals are what you want to accomplish through donor engagement.

  • What are your three main fundraising goals for the next six months, in priority order?
  • What is the one marketing tactic that contributes most to meeting your fundraising goals? In other words, what is the most productive way you can use marketing to meet your fundraising goals?

Step 2:  Determine your target audience

Which of your donors would be most interested in your message? Who is most likely to respond and take action? Once you determine your target audience, segment your list further to prioritize the “low-hanging fruit” within that larger group.

Step 3: Plan your approach

Prioritize one or two methods to get you to your marketing goal. Whether your message is about a fundraising event, an ongoing program or new initiative, or your organization’s story; it’s not just what you say, it’s how you say it. Consider:

  • Who are you targeting?
  • How are you communicating?
  • When are you contacting them?

Step 4: Craft your message

Communicate back to your donors first and foremost with what connects them with your organization; what they care about most. You have a sense of what matters to your audience and what their habits are. Take your core messages and look at them objectively. Do they align with what you know about your prospects and donors?

Step 5: Analyze Your Results

Agree on what success looks like during the planning process. Regularly review your results, in order to adjust tactics and strategies to achieve your goals. To round out your marketing plan, including the following:

  • Timeline: How often will you review your plan—monthly, quarterly, annually?
  • Metrics: How will you measure your success? Consider website analytics, e-newsletter subscriptions, and the number of donors who gave or volunteers who signed up. These metrics will be defined by what you want to accomplish.
  • Evaluation: Review how your marketing activities have changed and/or improved your organization’s situation. Analyze what worked and why to identify what you want to do differently, and revise your plan as you move forward.

Ready, Set, Go

Block out your 20-minute chunks first thing every morning, beginning Monday of next week. Read and reread this white paper, How Marketing Drives Donor Engagement, to learn more ways to use marketing to achieve your fundraising goals. Share it with your colleagues, and enlist their input and assistance as you work through the five steps to a game-changing marketing plan.

Your investment of time and energy will be well worth it.

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