Today, in our series of questions you need to ask your agency or consultant, we poke around about integration. Just ask them: “How do you integrate fundraising and marketing: online/offline; analytics/strategy; traditional media/social media for me?”
Gone are the days when you could risk having separate messaging or branding. Big or small, you must have unified messaging and a central focus to all of your efforts.
Imagine you are doing direct mail acquisition. Your agency “sells” you on a great acquisition kit. It’s a winner. But nearly half of the people who receive a direct mail appeal report going online for more information (NP Times July 2008). So when your prospects get your acquisition mailing and half of them go online to check you out will your organization look and sound like what they received in the mail? If not, you better integrate.
Do the analytics you receive help you make decisions about your strategy? (You are making strategic decisions based on analytics right?) Numbers on a page or cool graphics aren’t the name of the game. Numbers without context are meaningless. Finding strategies that work and that you can replicate is what you have to have. Testing, measuring and reporting drive strategy.
Social media is here to stay. No one is completely sure how it will shake out for fundraising BUT you need to be experimenting and testing. It seems that social media alone is far from being a sustainable marketing strategy for most of us. But if you think of it as a PR/relationship tool, social media becomes a strong supporting player in an overall campaign. As you think about 4th Quarter (you are, right?), be sure to consider how your website, social-media platforms, direct mail, newsletters and personal contacts will work together.
Bottom line, you can’t afford a “one-trick pony.” Integrate, integrate, integrate.
What do you think? If you’re curious or want an outside on perspective on your program, email us and we’ll talk.
Here’s the list of our “Ask Your Agency/Consultant” questions so far:
Question 1: (not announced yet)
Question 2: (not announced yet)
Question 3: Have you disclosed all commissions?
Question 4: How do you integrate fundraising and marketing?
Question 5: Have you worked in a ministry?
Question 6: (not announced yet)
Question 7: (not announced yet)
Question 8: How will the new 990 requirements effect me?
Question 9: (not announced yet)
Question 10: Are you a real expert?
(photo credits: charlottel)