Changes in our lifestyle and advances in technology are forcing nonprofit organizations to communicate differently. Traditionally, many organizations have used a blast of letters and/or emails to regularly solicit support. I believe these methods will still be effective in the future, but only for a portion of the population that needs to be reached. Now and in the future it is going to be critical that nonprofit organizations use multiple channels of communication to reach their target audience.
The need to use multichannel communication was a topic addressed by many of the speakers at the Converging Campaigns panel discussion.
The following list discusses just a few of the things panelists mentioned during the event:
- E-mail has been the workhorse of the industry for some time according to Vinay Bhagat, Chief Strategy Officer and Founder at Convio. However, the trend is now "one size doesn't fit all." Multiple methods of communication will be required In the future to be effective.
- Adam Conner, Associate for Privacy and Global Public Policy at Facebook, said organizations need to start repurposing their content. Repurposing content is the practice of modifying and reformatting the same basic information to publish it in a variety of ways. For example, a nonprofit organization might write a story to distribute through email. That same story could be posted on social networking sites and used to create a video.
- According to Nicco Mele, Progressive Online Strategist at EchoDitto, video technology is an area where the most innovation will happen in the near future. Vinay Bhagat made a point during this discussion that very few nonprofits have embraced the use of video as a means of communication.
Advances in technology have brought many communication channels within reach of even the smallest nonprofit organization. What are some of the communication channels that should be considered today? The following are just a few to consider:
- Books and reports
- Photos and slide shows
- Online video
- Social networking sites
- Forum discussions
- Corporate web sites
- Text messages
- Press releases
- Television/radio advertising and interviews
- Speaking engagements
There are many people who are not hearing about your cause and organization because the message is not reaching them. Consider expanding your marketing to include some additional channels of communication that you are not using today.
Can you think of additional communication channels that should be considered? Let me know by submitting it in a comment below.