This week, I stumbled onto United Way of the National Capital Area. Take a look at how its website inspires support by putting community needs and measurable goals right out there where we can see them.
And take a look at what you see when you google news of UWNCA:
I’m sure UWNCA hosts a lot of program events and throws a lot of fundraising parties. But when you look at how it represents itself online, it is with laser focus on how it is improving the lives of real people. If your nonprofit’s communications are stalled, endlessly publicizing events and requests for donations, here are three tips from the UWNCA playbook:
Specific Results – not just Broad Mission.
Instead of stories about “Bringing History to Our Community’s Children,” how about “11-year-old discovers her ancestry thanks to summer camp.” Instead of proclamations about “Ending Homelessness,” why not also showcase “Family moves from shelter to its first home, thanks to affordable housing initiative.” Instead of “Volunteers Needed,” maybe first tell a story like “Recent retiree discovers the beauty of dance – and a passion for volunteering.”
Make it measurable.
Set a goal that puts down a mark. And talk about that goal whenever you talk about the program. Do this to improve your program results, and do it to create excitement about achieving the goal.
Ask for action.
When you talk about the impact of your work, that’s the perfect time to ask for a volunteer mentor. Ask for a donation. Ask for a social-media share. Ask for all three, when it makes sense.
You are changing the lives of real people in your community. Tell their stories. And use their successes to inspire support for MORE change. The United Way of National Capital Area is figuring it out. So can you.
Bonus: I found UWNCA thanks to this tweet, which highlights another tip about asking for action: Do it any time you have their attention!