RED is committed to helping non-profit organizations reach the world through their presence on the web. To that end, we are posting this series of articles aimed at demystifying website creation for non-profits. If you have any questions as you read along, please write a comment, or get in touch with us directly.
Planning your non-profit’s content strategy
In the previous post, we discussed the importance of defining your organization’s goals and identifying your audience. The next step is planning your non-profit’s content strategy around your audience and goals.
As you start planning your non-profit’s content strategy, keep in mind who your target audience(s) are. For example, if you’re targeting potential donors, what types of content will inspire them to contribute? If you’re recruiting volunteers, what do they need to know to get involved? If you’re appealing to funding agencies, how can you impress them with your organization’s good deeds?
We tend to think of content as written copy. But it’s important to remember that the web supports a diversity of content types. So your content might additionally include photos, videos, and infographics. Images catch a reader’s eye and make them interested in reading the information. Using these various media types, think about how to craft your content in a way that appeals to your target audience. Since humans are natural storytellers, it can often be effective to share your content as a story.
Depending on your organization’s resources, your content strategy might also include regular blog posts, social media posts, and email newsletters. Publishing fresh content through one or more of these channels will show that your organization is vibrant and active. However, also be realistic and keep in mind your organization’s resources for generating new content. It’s better to start with a modest plan and only expand your content as you feel comfortable and capable of doing so, rather than starting out strong and failing to maintain the flow of content.
Whether you’re planning to generate your web content in-house or hire a professional, these questions will help you get started planning your non-profit’s content strategy:
Part I: Gathering your organization’s basic info
- In a brief statement, describe what your organization is and what it does.
- In a few short paragraphs, describe your organization’s history and mission. (This content would be placed on your website’s About page.)
- If you have a staff and/or board of directors who you want to include on your website, do you have high-quality headshots and a brief bio for each member?
Part II: Planning content for your target audience(s)
- Who is your primary target audience? (This will come from the main goal of your non-profit’s web strategy.)
- Who is/are your secondary target audience(s)?
- What types of information will those audiences be looking for when they visit your site?
- What pages should your website include to share this content with your target audience(s)?
Part III: Logistical planning for content
- Do you already have content that will serve your goals, or do you need to create new content?
- Do you have high-quality images that will help reach your audience and tell the story of your organization?
- What are the resources that your organization currently has to dedicate to an ongoing content strategy? For example, who will write blog posts, how frequently, etc.?
Did you miss Part I? Catch up here!
Part I: Planning your non-profit organization’s web strategy
Coming up next:
Part III: Website design for non-profits
Part IV: Building and hosting your non-profit’s site
Part V: WordPress plugins for non-profits
Part VI: Security, SEO, and Accessibility
Part VII: Leveraging social media to expand your influence
Do you have any questions we didn’t address in this series? Tips and tricks to share with other non-profit organizations like yours? Get in touch with us, or comment below!