E Fundraising Through Innovative Technology

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Fundraising Through Innovative Technology from Caster Family Center for Nonprofit Research event on June 5, 2009. The event was sponsored by U.S. Bank.

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E Fundraising Through Innovative Technology

  1. 1. Shakespeare Santa Cruz: 10 Days & The Internet A Tale of New Media Dana Werdmuller, Director of Marketing & PR
  2. 2. Who we are: <ul><li>Shakespeare Santa Cruz is a professional theatre company in residence at the University of California, Santa Cruz. </li></ul><ul><li>Structured to be a financially self-sustaining independent unit on campus. </li></ul>
  3. 3. What our situation was: <ul><li>UCSC had been willing to absorb our short-term deficits and work with us on long-term solutions. </li></ul><ul><li>With recent state cuts, UCSC could no longer support any absorption of potential deficit. </li></ul><ul><li>SSC was at risk of being shut down. </li></ul>
  4. 4. What we needed to do: <ul><li>Reach out to the community and our supporters to see if they were willing to step up and support SSC. </li></ul><ul><li>If we could raise funds in advance of approving our proposed budget, they could confidently green light us for the 2009 season. </li></ul><ul><li>The goal of $300,000 was announced to staff on Friday, December 12, 2008 at 7pm. </li></ul><ul><li>Our deadline was Monday, December 22, 2008 at 12 noon. </li></ul>We had 10 days.
  5. 5. What we did: <ul><li>Challenge was expected, preliminary press releases were drafted </li></ul><ul><li>We chose to hold the announcement until the our holiday show closed Sunday evening. </li></ul><ul><li>Preparation was key. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Day 1: Saturday, December 13 <ul><li>Finalized press release for mass email distribution </li></ul><ul><li>Created list of FAQs and answers </li></ul><ul><li>Drafted letter from Artistic Director </li></ul><ul><li>Created talking points for staff and board </li></ul><ul><li>Advance contact with select media </li></ul><ul><li>Town hall meeting planned </li></ul>Tally: $0. We had 9 days.
  7. 7. Day 2: Sunday, December 14 (part 1) <ul><li>Uploaded press release, FAQs , etc. to website (private pages) </li></ul><ul><li>Prepared email communication in Constant Contact </li></ul><ul><li>Prepared email to media with press release </li></ul>Tally: $0. We had 8-1/2 days.
  8. 8. Email Message
  9. 9. Day 2: Sunday, December 14 (part 2, 11:00 pm) <ul><li>Switched website postings from private to public pages </li></ul><ul><li>Added a “Give to SSC” button on website announcement </li></ul><ul><li>Sent email to media with press release and links </li></ul><ul><li>Sent email communication via Constant Contact (7700 names) </li></ul>Tally: $5. We had 8 days.
  10. 10. Tracking Results
  11. 11. Day 3: Monday, December 15 <ul><li>News article runs in local paper </li></ul><ul><li>Website receives record traffic </li></ul><ul><li>Email communication receives record click-throughs </li></ul><ul><li>Media inquiries are received, interviews coordinated </li></ul><ul><li>Create a “ticker” on home page with running total </li></ul><ul><li>Add donor list to web site </li></ul><ul><li>Add message board to web site, invite visitors to “talk to us” </li></ul><ul><li>Hold town-hall style meeting with key stakeholders </li></ul><ul><li>Film remarks by board and Artistic Director </li></ul><ul><li>Independent Facebook groups begin to pop up </li></ul>Tally: $45,590. We had 7 days.
  12. 12. Day 4: Tuesday, December 16 <ul><li>Continue to coordinate media inquiries </li></ul><ul><li>Update website tally, donor lists, messages </li></ul><ul><li>Add news articles to online press room </li></ul><ul><li>Post video on YouTube (Artistic Director comments) </li></ul><ul><li>Link video to website: YouTube </li></ul>Tally: $88,061. We had 6 days.
  13. 13. Day 5: Wednesday, December 17 <ul><li>Continue to coordinate media inquiries </li></ul><ul><li>Update website tally, donor lists, messages </li></ul><ul><li>Add news articles to online press room </li></ul><ul><li>Send email update via Constant Contact with video link </li></ul>Tally: $165,605. We had 5 days.
  14. 14. Email Message #2
  15. 15. Day 6: Thursday, December 18 <ul><li>Continue to coordinate media inquiries </li></ul><ul><li>Update website tally, donor lists, messages </li></ul><ul><li>Add news articles to online press room </li></ul>Tally: $213,866. We had 4 days.
  16. 16. Day 7: Friday, December 19 <ul><li>Continue to coordinate media inquiries </li></ul><ul><li>Update website tally, donor lists, messages </li></ul><ul><li>Add news articles to online press room </li></ul>Tally: $249,651. We had 3 days.
  17. 17. Day 8-9: Sat-Sun, December 20-21 <ul><li>Update website tally, donor lists, messages </li></ul><ul><li>Add news articles to online press room </li></ul><ul><li>UCSC offices closed </li></ul><ul><li>Tallies could not be updated until Monday, 12/22 </li></ul><ul><li>Draft press release with final outcome (various scenarios) </li></ul>Tally: $249,651. We had 1 day.
  18. 18. Day 10: Monday, December 22 <ul><li>Update website tally, donor lists, messages </li></ul><ul><li>Add news articles to online press room </li></ul><ul><li>Wait for UCSC donor processing office to catch up </li></ul><ul><li>Wait for official final tally from Chancellor’s office </li></ul><ul><li>Post final count to website home page </li></ul><ul><li>Send out email announcement via Constant Contact </li></ul><ul><li>Send out press release to media </li></ul>Tally: $416,417. We had done it.
  19. 19. Email Message #3
  20. 20. By the numbers…
  21. 21. Tools Used, Lessons Learned: We had minimal experience with social networking tools but were successful because we followed these basic guidelines: <ul><li>Be prepared. </li></ul><ul><li>Keep it simple. </li></ul><ul><li>Use the tools you already have. </li></ul><ul><li>Let others extend your reach. </li></ul><ul><li>Create content. </li></ul><ul><li>Engage. </li></ul><ul><li>Update, Update, Update. </li></ul>
  22. 22. What’s Next? We are now focusing on leveraging these lessons and tools for ongoing marketing and communications: <ul><li>Be strategic. </li></ul><ul><li>Being prepared is more important than reacting quickly. </li></ul><ul><li>Even if the message is complex, keep the initial </li></ul><ul><li>communication simple and invite the receiver to dig </li></ul><ul><li>deeper if they chose. </li></ul><ul><li>Develop your tools well in advance of communications. </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t take on too many new tools at once. </li></ul><ul><li>Create content at every opportunity. </li></ul><ul><li>Commit to activities that are sustainable. </li></ul>
  23. 23. Thank You. For more information on Shakespeare Santa Cruz and its 2008 fundraising challenge, visit: www.shakespearesantacruz.org

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