Amid the hustle and bustle of the holidays, don’t forget to keep the work hustle going. There are only 14 days left in 2017, and here are five things you can easily do in the next two weeks to ensure 2018 starts strong!
Order your save the dates. Spring is the big fundraising season for many nonprofits filled with galas, charity walks and golf tournaments. Although the event may be months away, NOW is the time to start marketing for it. Get your save the dates and invitations ordered. If you work with a mailing house, like One Step, you can also schedule those mailings for the future. Now is also the time to start working on programs, signage, emails, social media posts, and ads.
Clean your contact lists. Every direct mail piece, every email, every phone call, every door knock costs time and money. Stop wasting money on emails sent to bad addresses, postcards sent to people who no longer live at that address, or cold calling people who are not part of your target audience. Now is a great time to go through your lists and get rid of bad contacts, as well as add new ones you’ve made over the years.
Write new case studies or gather testimonials. What big projects did your organization accomplish in 2017? What were your significant impacts? Write those up as stories or case studies while they are fresh in your mind, and then you have impactful content ready for 2018. Now is also a great time to reach out to individual people who were impacted by your organization…recipients, employees, community members, donors, volunteers…and ask them for testimonials about your organization. Consider getting written and video testimonials.
Consider your brand. Take at a look at your visual brand and your messaging. Does it still reflect the values and goals of your organization? Does it convey the message you strive to live out in the day to day? If not, now is a great time to tweak it, or revamp it altogether.
Schedule your January marketing pieces. Order your direct mail postcards, write your email newsletter, schedule your social media posts and get that newspaper ad submitted. When everyone else is scrambling to get their stuff out that first week of January, you’ll already be done and strategizing for the next month.
The Challenge: The Chanje Movement needed help promoting their first ever golf classic and gala. Previously, their big fundraising event had been a charity run which required very different promotional materials. They came to us with a vague idea of what they wanted, but didn’t know the details. Specifically, they needed guidance on their invitations, programs and signage.
The Solution: At One Step, we’ve created and printed marketing materials for several charity galas, including American Heart Association, so we had several different ideas for Chanje. We pulled out our stack of samples and discussed content ideas, design ideas, paper types and budget. Once we narrowed down the details, we brought in a designer who created a look for the event by expanding on the logo they had already created.
The Surprise: Two weeks before the event, we were discussing signage and the founder, Dave, expressed a desire for a sign that encouraged people to participate in child sponsorships. Their One Step account rep, Brianna, suggested printing on a white board sign so that the team could use markers to track progress.
The Result: The whiteboard sign was a huge hit. One Step printed a simple thermometer design on white board material, and the Chanje team wrote their goal and tracked their progress with erasable marker. They’ll be able to reuse this sign to future events. In addition, One Step created elegant invitations, event programs, sponsorship banners and signs for each golf hole. The Chanje Movement was incredibly pleased with the result.
The Testimonial: “Working with Brianna at One Step Services makes it easy for our small organization to increase our impact. When we need help with graphics & design or fresh ideas for our content or marketing, she is available – and they’re affordable and fast! We planned our first ever golf & gala fundraiser and their support made it possible to focus on sharing our vision and connecting with people. Knowing they are there for us gives me a confidence we have the support we need.” – Dave Brodksy