An example plan for marketing an NGO website and drive donations
Santosh Lakshman a.k.a LuckyMurari
This document aims to create a plan to improve the user activity and the social
media buzz and in turn improve the percentage of cyberactivists willing to donate
to the organization.
a. Creating an active user community who help in creating the public pressure to
win the campaigns.
b. Increasing the amount of financial support to the organization received via
c. Try to get the cyberactivists emotionally attached to the organization and help
in the functioning and spreading the word.
The following images illustrate the simple classification of different aspects.
3.1 User Classification:
Cyber-Activists/Users are classified as in the following image. Every cyber-
activist will fall into atleast one division but may also fall into multiple divisions.
3.2 Work classification:
The work to be done by the team is broadly classified as in the following picture:
The work is classified as two types work done by the team and work done by
the cyberactivists. The team works in such a way as to push the cyber-activists
into performing their functions and in acquisition on new cyberactivists. The
cyber-activists help in growth of the cyber presence of the organization.
4.1 Works by Team:
The works by team has been broadly divided as shown in the previous image. A
detailed explanation and directives have been explained in here:
All the web properties can be broadly classified into two:
1. Central Site
2. Landing Pages
The central site should be redesigned in such a way that it possesses the
Focus on Usability and should be fast loading
Links are highlighted and use of big buttons etc has to be made to catch
User should not be overwhelmed with information.
Donation page should be more optimized and with simple but clear
Donations in the form of coupons, merchandise etc need to be accepted.
Social Media properties need to be linked.
Previous Campaigns should be archived
Feeds for blog and updates need to be provided
Make Feedback, Contact Us, Publicize us (with banners and widgets ) etc
Enable comments and Social Bookmarking.
Do onsite SEO.
Allow users to subscribe with their interests.
Ask users to tell their story, volunteer to create buzz etc.
Enable cyberactivists to make profiles and give titles, incentives to them
based on their contribution.
All landing pages are designed keeping the following points in mind:
Give incentives to the cyberactivists they may not always be monetary.
You can also give incentives like some titles like green champion etc.
Sell Merchandise. Use sites like cafepress that provide commission for the
Quick optimize the page with usability testing, A/B testing etc. Also do
Always link back to the central site and social profiles.
Enable feeds and updates.
Always add social bookmarking widgets.
Enable users to publicize via Banners, Widgets etc.
Do minimal and targeted SEM.
Donations in the form of coupons, merchandise etc need to be accepted.
Once the campaign is concluded always redesign the site to redirect the
users to the Central site or on-going campaign.
Tools to use:
Google Website Optimizer http://bit.ly/JpGXW
Google Analytics http://google.com/analytics
SEO Tools from SEOMoz http://www.seomoz.org/tools
Widgetslab.com / Springwidget.com /other widget generators
Google Grants http://www.google.co.in/grants/details.html
Myntra.com , Picsquare.com , Pringoo.com , iTasveer.com etc
Mailing Lists need to be categorized in different ways. A simple approach could
be categorization based on
Time since joined to send automated messages after first x days of
User level like content generator, affiliate etc.
This may be accomplished by asking users for their preferences while signing up
for mailing list. Make it easier for user to unsubscribe. While unsubscribing, allow
them to unsubscribe from specific campaign/interest etc.
The mailing lists should try to make cyberactivists curious and persuade to go to
the site. The rate of people considering the mails as spam need to be very low
and users should not be overwhelmed or flooded. We need also drive donations
via Mail. This can be achieved by following the simple rules (not guidelines!)
Subject line is the gateway to the mails. It needs to contain as much info
in as much less space as possible (<50 letters)
Subject line should provide proper info about the topic. No abstract
phrases like What do you do? etc should be used. Stating the
campaign/topic something like [Green Turtles] before the subject line
The mails need to provide short and sweet updates/content etc., with an
attached readmore... link redirecting to the original article on the
Add links to donate, social profiles, volunteer, unsubscribe in the footer.
Highlight some top cyberactivists in mails. Link to their profile and a small
intro about them in the mails.
Provide users with coupons and incentives frequently.
Mailing List Services http://mashable.com/2007/08/10/email-newsletters/
4.1.3 Incentives / Coupons:
The incentives and coupons can be used to attract cyberactivists and make
them remain active. This way the major problem of dormant cyberactivists can be
reduced. This work can be divided into two based on the difference in the type of
The incentives can be in two forms merchandise and Online Recognition. The
merchandise part of incentive needs and budget and has to be used in very
miserly manner. The Online recognition to the users can be given in the form of
User Titles and Awards
Access to some information
Highlighting users via social media organs.
The merchandise can be from sponsors and separate budget allocated. In
metros, some other gifts like a visit to Green Peace office etc, can be given.
The coupons can be acquired by requesting the companies to help with the
activity. This can be done via:
Pitching for the sponsors on the social media properties like twitter, social
Mailing relevant companies to provide with coupons. The companies
database is prepared with contacts to be mailed. The mails need to be
personalized to the company with a standard template.
May be asking the companies to sponsor some campaigns (Does it affect
the company policy??)
The microblogs organ currently consists of only twitter as the major player.
Friendfeed may be added to the list but it is not worth the pain yet. The simple
guides regarding twitter can be as follows:
Use a single account for all the campaigns. No separate twitter accounts
for each campaign
The website of the profile has to redirect to one of the current landing
pages and has to be updated frequently.
Follow users interested in the topic. Most of them follow back. The
accounts may not be Indian, because this account is mostly used for
Post updates from user generated content
Highlight profiles some activists
Post latest updates with images and links. Tweeps love images and links
Ask for donations, sponsors etc in some tweets
Publicize other media properties
Retweet relevant tweets.
Give out goodwill tweets like thanks for the tweet etc.
Monitor the brand using Twitter Search and reply for the issues.
Ask for social bookmarking of some interesting links.
Brand Monitoring tools http://mashable.com/2008/12/24/free-brand-monitoring-
The blogosphere includes both the internal and external blogs, and Social
Bookmarks. Each of them has its own way to deal
Internal Bloggers blog on central site and may be on campaign sites depending
on the campaign. The blogs are made by cyberactivists and the employees at
GPI. There need to be a page instructing the bloggers with the guidelines while
blogging. The guidelines should include:
Instructions to write SEO optimized titles, good content etc
Instructions on Social Bookmarking, commenting etc
Information about incentives.
External Bloggers blog about the campaigns on their blog, linking back to the
central site and the campaign pages. The action can be performed by performing
the following steps:
Create a database of top bloggers and send out requests to them to post
about campaigns. The mail sent to them need not be a personalized one
and a standard mail can be used for that.
Drive the already registered volunteers to make posts on their blogs and
Enable them to display Widgets, banners and blogroll links
Windows Live Writer http://windowslivewriter.spaces.live.com
Blog Commenter www.thefreeblogcommenter.com
4.1.6 Social Networks:
Social Networks Activity may be divided into Apps and Groups. These have to be
Apps should have inbuilt monetization model.
They need to viral features like post to wall.
Apps may be fun-oriented with green theme (like http://bit.ly/LF0mt ) or
information-oriented (like electricity usage calculator).
The monetization method by app will be asking users to buy credits to
advance levels or directly asking for donation.
Enable to add application on the profile
Involve people via fan pages, event updates, causes etc
Enable users to donate
Post all the updates and increase activity
Link to websites and social profiles.
Facebook Causes ttp://www.facebook.com/apps/application.php?id=2318966938
Facebook API http:// developers.facebook.com
4.1.7 Video Networks:
Use tools to blast the videos on all the video sites.
Comment on the network.
Use tools and functionality provided by video sites to help social
Optimize the video titles and tags
Use description to promote the relevant links
Youtube's Call-To-Action tool http://bit.ly/tL5fw
Share twitter updates to the mobiles using Google SMS Channels
Advertise the SMS Channel
Google SMS Channels http://labs.google.co.in/smschannels
4.2 Works by Cyberactivists:
The contributions by cyberactivists can be depicted by the following picture:
4.2.1 Donors: Donors are the ones who have donated/ are donating to the
4.2.2 Social Buzzers: These are the people who retweet, comment, put status
messages, add apps and blog about the organization
4.2.3 Employees (Volunteers): They provide support to cyberactivists by
responding their simple queries etc. They take part in building the good will of
company and they monitor the buzz on the brand and respond to it.
4.2.4 Affiliates: These are the ones who refer the organization and drive traffic.
Their activities include referring friends via TYF, FWDed mails etc, display
banners, widgets etc.
4.2.5 Mobile Activists: They support the organization by forwarding messages,
mobile payments, registering for SMS etc
4.2.6 Content Generators: They generate content on our platforms. Their
activities include blogging, social bookmarking, commenting, replying on forum
4.2.7 Other: These are the activists who don t fall into any other categories.
Examples include users registered for email updates.
By functioning in those activities the cyberactivists get the below benefits from