Why Integrating Fundraising and Awareness-Generating Media is Essential
Awareness and branding
In the introductory phase of a donor relationship, visibility for your organization is the first logical step. This is the phase of the relationship when potential donors are forming their first impressions of your organization and beginning to get to know you by collecting information. And as the old adage goes, you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression.
That’s why you should take a long, hard look at your “brand.” And by that I mean your reputation and donors’ current perceptions of your organization. If you’re not sure how your organization is perceived by donors, you might want to conduct some research. The best means to do this would be to ask your current agency to help you, if you have one, or to contact a research firm to help you gain deeper and more objective insights.
Depending on the results, you might need to take a good look at your mission. Have you drifted off track or has your mission become diluted over time? If so, then donors won’t fully know who you really are today or what you stand for, which will in turn affect donations. It’s amazing how many organizations have an outdated mission statement. As the organization has evolved over time, the existing statement no longer reflects reality. Updating this most vital component of both internal and external communications should be a top priority and completed before doing anything else.
If your organization’s mission statement is still germane, you might need to look at some of the other aspects of your brand identity: your logo, tag line, the images, typefaces and colors you use. These elements of your brand are your organization’s “face.” And, in this case, looks do matter. These components of your brand are the first things people see when they meet you. It’s also your organization’s personality — the way you present yourself to, and interact with, the world.