Did you know that 66 percent of Americans check their phones about 160 times per day and 46 percent check their phones before getting out of bed? People regularly keep their phones nearby, which is why text message marketing can be an excellent tool for nonprofit organizations to communicate with their supporters and increase donations.
With more than 10 million nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) globally, it can be challenging to stand out in the crowd and attract more supporters. When budgets are tight, competition is strong, and every dollar matters, text message marketing is the strategy that makes all the difference for nonprofit organizations. In this blog post, you’ll learn the top strategies your nonprofit organization can use to make the most out of its SMS marketing campaigns.
What Is Text Message Marketing?
Text message marketing, also known as SMS marketing or text-to-give, is a broad term used for commercial text messaging-related practices. On a basic level, it’s a mobile marketing strategy that uses short messages service (SMS) and multimedia messaging services (MMS) to send mass text messages to a specific audience. For non-profits, that’s typically to loyal supporters and passionate donors.
In today’s fast-paced environment, digital marketing tools are constantly evolving, and it’s important to keep up with the latest, most profitable tools to help you stay top of mind and nurture your leads. Text message marketing is one of the most effective ways for nonprofit organizations to drive new supporters, recruit and coordinate volunteers, and share important cause updates.
Top Text Marketing Strategies for Nonprofit Organizations
Below are a few strategies to help your nonprofit organization grow awareness, triple donations, and engage with supporters in real-time.
1. Include Eye-Catching Multimedia to Increase Engagement
Text message marketing is commonly underutilized although nonprofit marketers have it at their disposal. It boasts one of the highest engagement rates of all marketing channels, as 90 percent of text messages are opened within three minutes. SMS marketing for nonprofit organizations also has an open rate of 99 percent, compared to email, which has a 20 percent open rate. These stats practically guarantee that any text message you send will reach your audience and they will read it. Even better, MMS messages increase engagement by 300 percent compared to text-only messages.
What are MMS messages? Unlike SMS or text-only messages, multimedia (MMS) messages allow you to add media content such as images, GIFs, audio files, QR codes, videos, and a subject line. Additionally, with Tatango’s MMS marketing functionality, you can include up to 5,000 characters in a single message.
According to research from Wharton School of Business, “donors tend to act more on emotion than rationality when choosing organizations to support.” The key to increasing supporters is appealing to their heart instead of their head. Sending captivating messages with softhearted images can get your subscribers’ attention and move them to take action. Check out how The Humane Society applies this strategy with these nonprofit text message marketing examples.
2. Add a Clear Call to Action and a Sense of Urgency
Text message marketing is the perfect way for your nonprofit organization to execute donation campaigns and get people to engage with your cause, such as signing a petition.
Every message you send needs to be strategic and should always add value to your audience. When creating a text message, make sure your copy is easy to read and has a specific call to action (CTA). In other words, your recipients should clearly understand what you want them to do next. The best CTAs center around your SMS marketing campaign goals.
For example, you can make it easy for supporters to help you reach those goals by using action verbs and phrases such as:
- Donate now
- Attend the event
- Sign our petition
- Register through this link
- Volunteer now
- Call to give
One of the biggest advantages of SMS text messaging is the short time between you sending the message and your subscribers opening it. Some nonprofit SMS marketing campaign goals, such as mobile fundraising, are time sensitive. Creating a sense of urgency and including deadlines in your messages will encourage your subscribers to act quickly and help you achieve your goals. You can add phrases like limited time, expires soon, and today only to reach (and surpass) your mobile fundraising goals.
3. Keep It Personal by Segmenting Your Audience
We all like to feel special and your supporters are no exception. Especially in a nonprofit setting, supporters want to feel a special connection to the causes and organizations they care about.
Craft tailored text messages (and offers or promotions) to ensure that every subscriber receives valuable and relevant content. Personalization can help you get your supporters’ attention and gain their trust more effectively and conveniently. In fact, 54 percent of consumers say they are more likely to take action if a text message is personalized.
You can achieve personalization with audience segmentation. Segmenting your text messages is essential to help you optimize your sms campaigns and avoid fatiguing your subscribers. When building your opt-in method, consider all the information you need to collect to segment your audience, such as zip code, first name, email, and even interests.
Data shows that the top benefits of personalization are a better customer experience, increased visitor engagement, improved brand perception, increased conversion rates, and increased lead generation and customer acquisition.
Use your subscribers’ profile information to send volunteer opportunities, birthday greetings, and location-based sms campaigns. Knowing your audience and measuring how they engage with your nonprofit organization will help you generate more responses, donations, and signatures.
With Tatango’s SMS marketing merge tags, you can dynamically insert your supporters’ first names into text messages. Make them feel special by sharing exclusive and important updates about your nonprofit organization.
Getting Started with Nonprofit SMS and MMS Marketing
Nonprofit supporters are passionate people who are willing to help the causes they love. Text message marketing helps you build strong relationships with your supporters, stay top of mind, and raise donations to forward your mission. Currently, only 15 percent of nonprofit organizations send text messages to potential donors and supporters. Talk to one of our SMS marketing experts to learn how Tatango can help your nonprofit organization can raise awareness, donations, and positive change.