A handy guide to evaluating your comms strategy

With the new year underway it’s important to begin on the right foot in what will probably be a 12-month marathon to catch up on lost opportunities for most nonprofits. Like every dedicated athlete, social sector superstars need to take stock of their current communications health before lacing up their shoes to begin the run of a lifetime!

Phil, the consummate coach for mission minded folks, has drawn up a checklist to help you evaluate the current strategy you have in place and take your communications pulse to improve your success. Take it one step further and get a personalized diagnosis from our in-house specialists – click here to get your free comms check-up now!

Communications Strategy Checklist

  • Audit: Take a full audit of your current assets. Make a list that includes internal and external communications, digital and paper formats, in house and 3rd party productions, yearly, monthly, weekly, and occasionally created items. This is the time to channel Marie Kondo and see how well you know where everything is.
  • Age: Now that you have the lists of lists created time to see the expiry date on everything. Ask yourself some questions like – is this still relevant to our mission? Does this date our organization? Do we really still need a fax number on this form?! If it still serves its purpose like that classic black skirt in your closet, put it in the keep pile.
  • Stakeholders: This is an important one, think of it like stretching before the big run – when was the last time you checked with your stakeholders about how your messaging is being received? By surveying and regularly polling your stakeholders on the intention of your messaging you can gauge how effective your current strategy is. Without this crucial feedback you have no way of knowing what to tweak to make things better. Bonus: donors love it when you ask them for their opinion, not just for their money!
  • Digital Tools:
  1. Your website is the most important digital tool you have, bar none! Is it maximized and optimized to help your organization achieve its social mission? How easy is it to make a donation online? Have you ever counted the steps from finding your website on Google to the thank you message after the donation transaction has been completed? A positive and simple user experience in the digital realm is often overlooked but the truth is, if it’s too clunky of a process you will lose donors fast!
  2. Your email marketing is next under the microscope. Are you taking advantage of the connectedness of digital mail by using many different calls to action within the pieces you are creating to redirect your reader to your website where donations can be made? Is it fun to read and interact with? Are you using a perfect combination of images, colours, and space to engage your audience? Pdf or Word attachments are relics of the past.
  3. Social Media – SM needs to be a two-way conversation in order to be really effective. Do you currently consistently respond quickly to SM comments and questions? Do you actively engage with others that are aligned with your mission. How are you managing your posting calendar? Don’t forget that just because someone is a millennial doesn’t mean they automatically understand how to best use platforms to raise the profile of your organization.
  • Donor Database (CRM) – Having a donor database that is updated, detailed, and easily searchable allows you to better segment and personalize your communications strategy. Is your digital workhorse being used to track the different ways donors have interacted with your organization and made donations? Do you regularly use the information in your CRM to know your donors better, carefully segment, and modify the voice used to communicate with them?

Now that you have all the items to check in one place you are ready to get down to business and start off the New Year full of vim and vigor. If you want to take it one step further and get a personalized evaluation on your current state of health, just click here to get your free communications strategy check-up sent to your inbox! No strings attached.

Wishing you a healthy 2021…