Essential reading for charities – 5 digital marketing tips worth every penny…
Digital marketing is an area where the third sector are beginning to get smart with their strategy, fundraising, and communications, making it fundamental to how they operate right across their organisations. They have started to recognise that without digital marketing, charities struggle to compete for visibility, remain sustainable and stay relevant to its audience.
Whilst this is good news for the great causes they were set up to help and support, many charities are struggling to identify the digital marketing essentials that will generate the best engagement and financial rewards.
If your Oxfordshire charity or voluntary organisation needs increased exposure to help achieve its strategic and fundraising goals, start to benefit from digital marketing with these 5 essential digital marketing tips
Digital marketing tips #1 – use a Google Ad Grant to maximise your charity’s online exposure
Many Oxfordshire charities don’t have the budget to spend on paid search advertising such as Google AdWords, but that doesn’t mean that they couldn’t benefit hugely from the increased exposure this marketing strategy can deliver. Google runs a scheme for charitable organisations called Google Ad Grants by offering up to $10,000 per month (approx £7,500) free advertising on the Google AdWords platform. This means that you can run your charity advertising on Google without needing to pay anything.
A Google Ad Grant is an ideal opportunity for your charity to spread the word and raise awareness about anything related to your charity including donations, events, volunteers, fundraising and fundraisers. It seems petty to mention limitations with such a large budget available each month, but you have to spread the £7,500 budget evenly throughout the month. This means a maximum daily spend of about £250. The Google Grant can only be used for text ads, so no images allowed, and there is an upper limit of £2 per click.
Digital marketing tips #2 – understand your audience and where they hang out
Essential to any digital marketing campaign is getting a solid understanding of your audience, particularly if your Oxfordshire charity is working within very tight budgets.
Having a thorough grasp of how people interact with your charity will enable you to identify and create the most appropriate content compelling enough to get them to open their wallets, volunteer or get involved with one of your fundraising events.
Initially you should analyse your existing data on your own website to understand who is visiting and what they are looking for. Consider metrics within Google Search Console such as keyword performance to identify a visitor’s intent. If you have Google Analytics set up geographic locations to see where most of your visitors come from, and look at specifics like internal search which may provide clues about persona behaviour or missed content opportunities.
Social media also provides good clues about your audience. If you have a Facebook page, Facebook Insights will give you demographic data about your existing community, and they are also likely to be visitors of your website. Despite recent headlines about data protection, people are still freely providing this information and even at the most basic level you can learn about their age, gender, location and language. Tools for other social networks are also available including Instagram and Twitter. Instagram Insights allows you to see impressions, engagement, reach, top posts and other important metrics, and Demographics Pro offers great demographic data about followers of your Twitter account.
Digital marketing tips #3 – have an effective online donation feature on your charity website and social media
Fundraising is getting increasingly harder for charities and there is greater competition with so many battling it out for the attention of donors. But digital has provided charities with a whole new way to spread the word about their causes and online donations.
People’s giving habits are changing and your Oxfordshire charity needs to make sure they are staying ahead of the times and making it as easy as possible for their supporters to donate online. To start with, optimise your potential donor’s online journey by clearly signposting them to your donation page. Not only should donation buttons be positioned high up the page, they must stand out. Often donate buttons can be crowded with a busy page which means they become less visible to visitors. By keeping the surrounding area of the donate button uncluttered it’s easier for possible donors to navigate to.
When they arrive at your donate page don’t give too many messages and options. A great tip to overcome lazy visitor behaviours is to offer visitors a selection of donation amounts, e.g. £10, £20, £50, but always have one of them pre-selected.
Digital marketing tips #4 – promote your charity to a local audience via OxfordCity.co.uk
You’ve built an eye-catching website for your charity, established good content to promote your key messages and events, and have set up strong donate buttons high up the pages. Although you may now be getting some website traffic, how do you get more local visitors and potential donors onto your website.
Visitors who live locally are more likely to empathise with your cause, so these visitors need to be attracted in large quantities. One great opportunity to achieve this is advertising your Oxfordshire charity on OxfordCity.co.uk, the leading accommodation and business directory site for the City of Oxford and surrounding area. With over 150,000 website visitors each year, it can direct a steady flow of visitors and potential donors to your website.
An Enhanced Entry on oxfordcity.co.uk gives you priority listing within the Charities and Voluntary Organisations category and provides you with a full detail page to help you promote your cause, tell compelling stories and include those all important links to your own website and donations page.
Digital marketing tips #5 – get storytelling on social media
Donating to charity is an emotional action, and the best way to appeal to this is through empathy. And the best way to appeal to this empathy is through narrative storytelling. Over 50% of those who support charities on social media state that compelling storytelling is what motivates them to take a charitable action.
For your Oxfordshire charity, possibly the most powerful marketing tool are your stories. Whatever your cause, you will have a story which will arrest someone, potentially create a connection with a donor and inspire them to engage with you.
If you need help with your digital marketing or creating online awareness for your charity contact Oxfinder at firstname.lastname@example.org